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House With Solar Panels

Irma Said:

I have a house with solar panels that were used to heat water.

We Answered:

An air handler, hydronic fan coil, pumps, safety controls, thermostat.

I recommend American Standard for an air handler.

Clayton Said:

When you power a house with solar panels.....?

We Answered:

Unless you live in a remote location there is no need to have a storage system. I have a system that is tied to the grid, I generate about 75% of my own energy. During the day when I'm generating more than I need I sell it back to my utility, basically my meter runs backwards, then at night I use what I need. This type of system is much less expensive than an off grid system. With my state rebate and fed. tax credit, I will break even no later than my 6th year.

Todd Said:

How do you get electricity in a rainy day if you have solar panels?

We Answered:

Solar panels convert light energy into electrical energy with the photovoltaic process. They work best when perpendicular to the incoming sunlight and with no clouds in bright sunlight. They will work at reduced efficiency if there are clouds or rain, but as long as its not dark, they will still produce "some" electricity.

That is one of the real problems with solar energy, as we expect to have electricity available on demand, regardless of day/night cycles and atmospheric conditions. Storing electricity is very inefficient, so we need hydro, nuclear,or fossil fuel energy to provide firm "on demand" energy as a base load.

Wesley Said:

Can I build a house with solar panels in Northern Kentucky / it be economically worth it?

We Answered:

I researched that when I lived in campbell co.

the usable solar exposier was real low.... something like 30-35%

Erin Said:

Out House Toilet with Solar Panels?

We Answered:

They slowly cook the crap until it is ash.

Adrian Said:

what can you tell me about solar panels?

We Answered:

Really depends on how much power they generate. Find out the voltage output and the amperage on an average day. I would be very much surprised if the output was anything to crow about.
Each square meter of earth only gets about 1hp (750W) worth of power from the sun. Then you take the efficiency of the solar panels (you'll be lucky if you get more than 10%) and it won't make a dent in your power usage unless your whole roof is covered.
As far as maintenance is concerned, you got to keep them clean

Josephine Said:

Powering my house with solar panels?

We Answered:

I had a survey of my home and it was estimated at $30K with a 30% rebate from the government. It would take about 15 years to pay back the cost. I elected to go solar water heating instead. 2 panels with piping installed to an 80 gallon electric water heater with an internal heat exchanger. One small photo voltaic panel to run the pump. There is ethylene glycol inside the pipe and it circulates and heats the water. Works excellent. I live in Nor-Cal and we get a lot of sun.

I need to comment on another statement that photo voltaic cells cost more energy to produce they generate. Maybe once but not true any longer.

{Solar cells and energy payback
In the 1990s, when silicon cells were twice as thick, efficiencies 30% lower than today and lifetimes shorter, it may well have cost more energy to make a cell than it could generate in a lifetime. The energy payback time of a modern photovoltaic module is anywhere from 1 to 20 years (usually under five)[9] depending on the type and where it is used (see net energy gain). This means solar cells can be net energy producers, meaning they generate more energy over their lifetime than the energy expended in producing them}

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