As described in a previous post we installed 5 x 250watt panels in an area of scrub land to the back of the villa. Last year the performance and therefore return was hampered slightly by connection delays, communication faults etc but for the last year it has been pretty much 100% trouble free.
We have no battery so its a use it or lose it scenario…..meaning you buy enough panels to cover a background level of useage in your residence such that you consume all the electricity you make.
A quick glance show the blue bar is thicker in the summer months….meaning the amount generated and then consumed is at its highest during this period. The total saving is reported to be 313 euro which will creep up another few euro before the end of the year. The 5 panels cost 3500 euro from EDP and we are paying them off at 60€ / month over 5 years. ie 720 euro per annum. The cool thing is that the panels are paying a good chunk of the 720 as time passes which reduces the sting a little from paying everything up front.
Ultimately the break even point will occur after approx 12 years…though this may reduce or increase depending on how the price of electricity fluctuates and the occupation level of the villa.
A side-benefit of the solar panels is this reporting system called Redy which sends out monthly summaries but also gives you access to all of the data above and a lot more. You can even switch on/off smart devices remotely and track the power useage of these devices. As well as the solar panel info you also get to see the effects of pool heating, electric kettle….in fact any significant power useage can be seen instantly on a live readout.
I don’t….but you could spend hours working out where all the power is going…..(maybe a job for a bored teenager)
So…has it been worthwhile. Well the panels are supposed to have a lifetime of 20-25 years so over their lifetime they certainly will. Do I feel better sleeping at night …doing a bit for the environment. Yes I do and if the cost of panels falls substantially …I’ll try and do a bit more particularly if an electric car begins to make a little more sense.
Go for it!