Home Solar

Joined
Dec 21, 2009
Messages
745
Location
WPB, FL
Just seeing how many of you have solar power for your home? Are you happy with it, and was it worth the cost, and has it eliminated your electrical bill other than “staying connected” cost?

I have a quote for a 9.5kW system for my home, 28 panels (jinko) with a single string solar edge inverter with power optimizers on the back of each solar panel. 25 year warranty on everything. I am not leasing, the cost is about 46,000 and I will pay the same as my electric bill for 25 years @2.99%. Federal incentive is $11,750 and state is $3,220 for this, which I could just put right back on the loan. Biggest reason for going Solar now is there is going to be a 40-50% increase in electric rates this winter in my area.

Look forward to your experiences.
Where do you live?

I am doing a 24 Panel Qcell 395, 9.48Kws with IQ8 Microinverters for $24500 pre gov incentive(no state incentive) on concrete tile roof (cost adder) with no exposed conduit.

You are almost at $5/watt imo is high no matter where you live, check with project solar as thats who I am going with.

Edit for RI see the avg cost here: https://www.energysage.com/local-data/solar-panel-cost/ri/
 

mattd

Thread starter
Joined
Oct 3, 2010
Messages
2,363
Location
RI
Where do you live?

I am doing a 24 Panel Qcell 395, 9.48Kws with IQ8 Microinverters for $24500 pre gov incentive(no state incentive) on concrete tile roof (cost adder) with no exposed conduit.

You are almost at $5/watt imo is high no matter where you live, check with project solar as thats who I am going with.

Edit for RI see the avg cost here: https://www.energysage.com/local-data/solar-panel-cost/ri/

I’m in northeast. RI.

Where are they based out of? Quick google search doesn’t show them local.
 
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Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
12,824
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Los Gatos, CA
Because it is a deduction from your total taxable income, not an actual 11.9K so the lower tax bracket you're in, the smaller the uncharged tax will be. The tax brackets are stepped depending on taxable income, so the real figure could be anywhere from 11 to 38% of the 11.9k depending on your bracket.
No. The Federal Tax Credit is a dollar for dollar credit. If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny.
If the solar credit is $10K and your tax burden is $5K you get $5K.
If your tax burden is zero then the solar credit is worthless.
It has nothing to do with tax bracket.
 
Joined
Dec 21, 2009
Messages
745
Location
WPB, FL
I’m in northeast. RI.

Where are they based out of? Quick google search doesn’t show them local.
I'm in WPB, with Project Solars full install option they source their own installer for your area. They are very transparent feel free to inquire. I had quotes as high as yours when I first started looking.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Joined
Dec 14, 2002
Messages
48,979
Location
New Jersey
I’d like to have solar. But these solar companies charge ridiculous prices for the jobs. The subsidies have resulted in solar installers with fancy souped up pickup trucks instead of lower and lower prices.

Inverter technology has gotten smart enough that there really isn’t major risk of back feeding. So these electrical companies want to sell all sorts of isolation switches and whatnot because they got it in “code” (don’t get me wrong, the NEC was written in blood), and charge thousands upon thousands of dollars to install a system.

I think so many folks would be much better served avoiding these silly $0 electric bill prospects that are achieved with $40k systems, and instead install simple, super cheap 300w-1.2kW systems (1-4 panels) with grid tie micro inverters, that can be installed strategically at bright spots on a property. Enough to offset the refrigerator and some peak day AC loading, but not a giant system.

Around here the utility ties single panels with microinverters directly to the utility lines. No isolation switches, no controls or smarts. Just a microinverter that does not feed the grid if it loses 60Hz. Every telephone pole has a panel at the right angle to get the sun, and pushes 250W back to the grid most daylight hours.

I actually want a carport that has solar panels for the roof.

10649178-BCD0-43FF-AD70-9D4E59C9DBA9.jpg
 
Joined
Aug 5, 2021
Messages
242
Location
Kingman, Arizona
Because it is a deduction from your total taxable income, not an actual 11.9K so the lower tax bracket you're in, the smaller the uncharged tax will be. The tax brackets are stepped depending on taxable income, so the real figure could be anywhere from 11 to 38% of the 11.9k depending on your bracket.
I am a certified public accountant and I sincerely hope you are not in the income tax preparation business since you have no idea what you are talking about. A $ 11,900 tax credit is a reduction in tax owed, not a deduction from income.
 

Al

Joined
Jun 8, 2002
Messages
19,609
Location
Elizabethtown, Pa
1. You take the risks. The contracting company gets the benefits. When if/the company folds see #1.

Think it through carefully. It will likely not turn out well. Make sure you understand who pays for damage and what if you sell the house. I looked at it carefully. Hope you guys do the same.
 
Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Messages
43,686
Location
'Stralia
Yep, November 2019....
6.6KW panels, a 5KW single phase inverter (remember Oz is 240V AC, 50Hz.)....my house has two phases, three to the eaves, and onlytwo entering the premesis.
We don't bank power, and with fiance here as well, my daily draw has risen from 3-4KW to 6-7, can export 40+Kw on a good summer's day.
We dn't bank, but get 8.69c/Kwh leaving the house, and 26.36c/KWh coming in....there's pressure to lower the sale price
, even have to pay to generate like the solar farms have to when they push the price negative...and obviously upward pressure on peak pricing, with the average wholesale price having increase nearly 4 fold in recent times.

System cost just under 4 grand installed and commissioned...signed over the g......house credits to the installer, they can claim them forward for the life of the installation up front. Have been nett zero billing since, with some surplus to pay my gas bills.

If the market goes where it is likely over the next few years, will install heat pumps to heat/cool the place with my electricity during the day, get the thermal mass of the house...gas is $30-$50/GJ wholesale, wholesale electricity is $200/MWh avge at present...that's the only reasonable move if they transfer to retail bills...and given Saturday, they are only going to be more expensive.


solar.jpg
 
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Joined
Jun 9, 2005
Messages
597
Location
Vermont
At the risk of sounding like a complete idiot...

I’ve been trying to follow this thread. I’m the person that friends and acquaintances come to for solar information as I educated myself and built my first system many years ago.

Yet I can hardly follow much of the discussion here.

My formula is simple and works and as recently as two weeks ago has well-served those I know. And that is to set up panels, wire, charge controller, wire, and finally the battery bank. That’s it.

I see people here discussing hiring people to do that work (trust me, if a certain friend of mine with no prior electronics knowledge can do it, anyone can do it), getting government incentives (I’d love to learn about that— a quick online search shows nothing but advertisements), and all sorts of acronyms and terminology that I don’t know.

I’m no fool, but I am getting old, and haven’t changed from what I initially learned about setting up solar systems. The reason I still do the same things is because they’ve worked for years for me and many others that I’ve assisted.

Is my knowledge so old and out-of-date that I need to do more research? I can still buy all the parts I need that I’ve been using for years so I didn’t think anything changed. I’ve conceptualized and assembled many systems successfully. Mainly for power outages at residences in remote rural areas, but also three full-time systems for homes that are far “off of the grid”.
 

mattd

Thread starter
Joined
Oct 3, 2010
Messages
2,363
Location
RI
Second quote I received is 38,387 with 8.8 kW system with Panasonic 400W panels with Enphase IQ8 micro inverters. Some mixed reviews on the company that quoted me this. Still have an appointment on 6/6 for a in person consult with another company. $4.36 per watt @1.99% financed. All before any federal or state credits. Projected payback is about 10 years.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
7,992
Location
South Carolina
No. The Federal Tax Credit is a dollar for dollar credit. If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny.
If the solar credit is $10K and your tax burden is $5K you get $5K.
If your tax burden is zero then the solar credit is worthless.
It has nothing to do with tax bracket.
" If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny."
I can only presume I am reading this wrong.
If the solar credit is 10k and my tax burden is 17k I only get 10k not 17k
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
7,992
Location
South Carolina
I’d like to have solar. But these solar companies charge ridiculous prices for the jobs. The subsidies have resulted in solar installers with fancy souped up pickup trucks instead of lower and lower prices.

Inverter technology has gotten smart enough that there really isn’t major risk of back feeding. So these electrical companies want to sell all sorts of isolation switches and whatnot because they got it in “code” (don’t get me wrong, the NEC was written in blood), and charge thousands upon thousands of dollars to install a system.

I think so many folks would be much better served avoiding these silly $0 electric bill prospects that are achieved with $40k systems, and instead install simple, super cheap 300w-1.2kW systems (1-4 panels) with grid tie micro inverters, that can be installed strategically at bright spots on a property. Enough to offset the refrigerator and some peak day AC loading, but not a giant system.

Around here the utility ties single panels with microinverters directly to the utility lines. No isolation switches, no controls or smarts. Just a microinverter that does not feed the grid if it loses 60Hz. Every telephone pole has a panel at the right angle to get the sun, and pushes 250W back to the grid most daylight hours.

I actually want a carport that has solar panels for the roof.

View attachment 100721
I didnt know this exists, but reading these posts I do see the option to pick just a small system to do as you posted and still get some kind of credit.
The reason I always was curious is power is dirt cheap here 5 cents kWh except for a 3 hour period during the day in my part of SC but I could imagine an attractive alternative for fun almost of something like this, even more so to keep something off the roof and low enough cost because I doubt I will ever live in one place long enough to make a full system pay off.
I absolutely love this idea more I think about it. IN fact if it was just a few months previous I might consider it for our present house, have the perfect place, almost like the photo shows and large area if need be... but now, we are seriously thinking of moving more south! *LOL*

Already contacted our first builder, just getting feet wet, still have to go down there and look. No decision made, yet.
But even in a new house, love the idea of this over an outdoor patio.
 
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mattd

Thread starter
Joined
Oct 3, 2010
Messages
2,363
Location
RI
Supposedly there has been a 40% increase in solar costs across the board due to “Covid” supply chain issues. 🙄
 
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Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
12,824
Location
Los Gatos, CA
" If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny."
I can only presume I am reading this wrong.
If the solar credit is 10k and my tax burden is 17k I only get 10k not 17k
Tax burden is the Federal Income Tax you owe for a year.
Solar credit is a percentage of your solar project cost, in my case it is 30%. So if my project was $30K my credit is ($30K * .3) = $9k.

You are entitled to a dollar for dollar credit of the smaller of your tax burden or solar credit.
Burden - Credit = tax owed; If tax owed less then 0 then tax owed = 0
$20K - $9K = $11K
$9k - $9k = 0
$8K - $9K = 0

You do not get full credit if your claculation is less than $0.
 

mattd

Thread starter
Joined
Oct 3, 2010
Messages
2,363
Location
RI
Tax burden is the Federal Income Tax you owe for a year.
Solar credit is a percentage of your solar project cost, in my case it is 30%. So if my project was $30K my credit is ($30K * .3) = $9k.

You are entitled to a dollar for dollar credit of the smaller of your tax burden or solar credit.
Burden - Credit = tax owed; If tax owed less then 0 then tax owed = 0
$20K - $9K = $11K
$9k - $9k = 0
$8K - $9K = 0

You do not get full credit if your claculation is less than $0.

Out of curiosity, do you know if the tax credit is applied before or after all deductions/other tax credits (child)? Or do they apply all applicable credits the calculate what you owe from what you paid throughout the year?
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
7,992
Location
South Carolina
Tax burden is the Federal Income Tax you owe for a year.
Solar credit is a percentage of your solar project cost, in my case it is 30%. So if my project was $30K my credit is ($30K * .3) = $9k.

You are entitled to a dollar for dollar credit of the smaller of your tax burden or solar credit.
Burden - Credit = tax owed; If tax owed less then 0 then tax owed = 0
$20K - $9K = $11K
$9k - $9k = 0
$8K - $9K = 0

You do not get full credit if your claculation is less than $0.
AHhhh.. I have re-read your original post like 7 times and finally understand the words = " If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny."
It was the "every penny" part. That my mind was thinking you were implying every penny of what, taxes you owe? *LOL*
Every Penny of the Solar Tax Credit, got it now. BUT I think your posts are more clear to people who have bought panels.

1. Such as "$9k - $9K = 0"
Zero what? I assume if the tax burden, taxes owed was 9k you would get a 9k credit for your panels and not owe anything.

2. Also, did you ever hear of companies on the West coast doing what another posted in here, like limited amount of panels on things like a covered patio, stuff like that?
I like that idea for low cost electric southern areas of the country, also in a home that you may not occupy for more than a decade or so.
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
12,824
Location
Los Gatos, CA
AHhhh.. I have re-read your original post like 7 times and finally understand the words = " If your tax burden exceeds the solar credit you get every penny."
It was the "every penny" part. That my mind was thinking you were implying every penny of what, taxes you owe? *LOL*
Every Penny of the Solar Tax Credit, got it now. BUT I think your posts are more clear to people who have bought panels.

1. Such as "$9k - $9K = 0"
Zero what? I assume if the tax burden, taxes owed was 9k you would get a 9k credit for your panels and not owe anything.

2. Also, did you ever hear of companies on the West coast doing what another posted in here, like limited amount of panels on things like a covered patio, stuff like that?
I like that idea for low cost electric southern areas of the country, also in a home that you may not occupy for more than a decade or so.
A better way to explain it is:
($30K solar project price) * (30% factor) = $9K maximum tax credit.

Tax Credit = smaller of Maximum Tax Credit or Yearly Tax Burden.
Taxes owed = Yearly Tax Burden - Tax Credit

My goal was to minimize recurring cost going forward. The solar project has proven to be a great investment. Once I hit break even, which has to bee soon, my ROI is realized. Energy in CA is expensive, so solar became a no brainer in my case.

I suggest doing the math and see what makes sense for you. Solar is expensive. See what is available to you in your area.
I am not sure why someone would go to the expense of installing an undersized solar energy system.
 
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Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
12,824
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Los Gatos, CA
Out of curiosity, do you know if the tax credit is applied before or after all deductions/other tax credits (child)? Or do they apply all applicable credits the calculate what you owe from what you paid throughout the year?
The credit is applied after deductions. Deductions reduce your taxable income. A tax credit is a dollar for dollar credit which is far better than a deduction.
 

mattd

Thread starter
Joined
Oct 3, 2010
Messages
2,363
Location
RI
The credit is applied after deductions. Deductions reduce your taxable income. A tax credit is a dollar for dollar credit which is far better than a deduction.
Interesting. I had a credit of around 1800$ last year from federal but still received the full tax credit for both of my kids (total credit of 8500$ or so after child credits). Does the solar credit work similarly? Just go on top of that even though I already have credit just from over payment, not including any credits?
 
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