Solar Power

Some say 'Green' or 'Sustainable' or 'Self Sufficient' how we try to ensure we live to put a smaller footprint on our earth.
Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Sun Mar 08, 2009 8:30 am

We have applied for Solar Power, a grid-connect unit and not as comprehensive a unit as we would like in that we will still be dependent on the main power source for awhile; so if the power goes out then we still lose our power too but it is a start. Any solar power at all is better than not having any particularly if it helps to offset the cost of our increasing regular energy bills. Once the unit is up and running it is quite a simple thing to add to, so we have been assured.

The increased Government rebates (which end on the 13th March) are the reason we decided to apply for it right now rather than later. Like most Government works it takes 4 to 6 months for them to come and assess your place so we decided to go ahead with it. In the end we can always so no.

Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

rdtj04
Posts: 333
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:58 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Re: Solar Power

Postby rdtj04 » Sun Mar 08, 2009 10:33 am

How did you get onto that Kathleen. I have been looking into it for ages but all is on trial here in Qld. How much will it end up costing as well? is that the one where excess electricity that you produce goes back into the grid? Therefore in effect giving you money back? Can't wait to hear more as I want it too.... Badly......
Cheers

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Sun Mar 08, 2009 12:15 pm

Hi Damaris,

I read about it in the newspaper a couple of weeks ago (although had heard something about it awhile previously and the newspaper report reminded me of that). Go to http://www.ecosmart.net.au

Yes it is the one where you are also grid connected. It is Government organized and a govt. deptment person comes out to look at your house to do the assessment (takes approx 4 months). Is a 1KW unit $2.695 after all rebates. The retturn on your excess solar power from the electricity company is different in the various states at this time. The WA government is in the process of legislating a buy paymyment amount of 60c per unit (I think it said in the ecosmart report)
On discussing this with the chap at the SolarShop down in Albany he told us that once the unit was installed it was quite an easy job to install further solar panels and increase your wattage. The bulk of the cost is apparently installation and electrics etc meaning the cost of extra solar panels in the future wont be as great .

My friend who has already applied and had her paperwork told me that once the paperwork goes through you have to supply a $500 deposit.

Cheers
Kathleen

PS Oh by the way, was thinking about your post re the solar oven and saw one for sale through GreenHarvest only today.
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

rdtj04
Posts: 333
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:58 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Re: Solar Power

Postby rdtj04 » Sun Mar 08, 2009 3:26 pm

SOLAR SMART PROGRAM

Act now!

$8,000 Solar Power Rebate ends June 30, 2009.

SolarSmart Package starts at $2,990.00 to $3,490.00.

EcoSmart have the experience, knowledge and quality of product to ensure you systems will work best for you.

Solar Smart Package:

- 6 x 170W Solar Panels
- 1 kW Inverter
- Installation
- Full BCSE Approval
- EcoSmart Home Assessment

Why so cheap?

This offer is possible because the government is providing an $8,000 rebate to put a solar power system on your roof.

EcoSmart is also committed to assist communities to take action for a sustainable future. EcoSmart have over 5 years experience in delivering large scale installation programs.

*Conditions Apply





Kathleen is this the one???? I am putting my name down but not in Qld as yet. Shame at least my interest is there that is the main thing.... Will start saving now....

Thanks for your help really appreciate you getting this info on the net so quickly. :D
Cheers

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Sun Mar 08, 2009 5:12 pm

Yes Damaris, that is the one. I am surprised it isn't in Qld as I had thought that it was a national project.

The full address for anyone else who is interested is - http://www.ecosmart.net.au/solarsmart.htm

Good Luck Damaris
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

minnie
Posts: 2700
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:23 am
Location: Alice, West of Casino, NSW
Contact:

Re: Solar Power

Postby minnie » Mon Mar 09, 2009 8:30 am

Hi Damaris,

The QLD government did a 'thing' last year where people put in for exactly the same thing and they only had to pay $500. So many applied they made it like a lottery, I know someone outside of Brisbane that won one, hasn't been installed yet though.

There's another scheme where people buy in together and then when they pool their money they buy at a cheaper cost...
:D
Vicki

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Mon Mar 09, 2009 11:26 am

I seem to remember something about another scheme being overwhelmed over East somewhere. Maybe that was the one.
Not likely to happen over here in the West I should think (not yet anyway) Most people I have spoken to still say it is too dear. Maybe once the power price starts hiking they will change their mind?

Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

minnie
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Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:23 am
Location: Alice, West of Casino, NSW
Contact:

Re: Solar Power

Postby minnie » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:30 pm

Hi Kathleen,

I saw Loris on the aussie forum saying about the numbers of people putting in for it.

And then a client told me he won and was getting it installed.
:D
Vicki

Mojojo
Posts: 501
Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2008 8:01 pm
Location: Perth and Donnybrook, WA

Re: Solar Power

Postby Mojojo » Mon Mar 09, 2009 2:42 pm

Hi all, don't know if any of this is any use to anyone or if I am (typically) sticking in my 2 cents worth where its not required!

I was at the home show thing in Perth last weekend, and made a point of talking to all the solar power people there. I have not had time to sit down and research and figure it all out for myself yet, but this is what I was told from two of the solar power stalls there:

One of them said they are not even trying to sell any new systems until after July, as the changes that are happening make it better to install then. I might not get these details perfect and have not looked anyting up yet - but in a nutshell he said that 1) While the $8000 rebate is gone, there's going to be a $7500 one and the means test on the rebate is being removed 2) the tariffs/credits you get paid for your power for feeding back into the grid are increasing substantially (which agrees with the 60c/unit rate that Kathleen mentioned) 3) there will be low or no-interest loans on offer (govt, and bendigo bank) to help people take advantage of it. And that 4) with the new tariffs and the loans, a mid sized system would pay itself off in about 5 years.

Another stall told me that if you have solar and are grid connected, if there is a power outage you will be out also, because you are in reality feeding all the solar from your house into the grid and drawing it and more or less back from the grid, none of the solar goes directly to power your place. And that there is a device in use in other parts of the world, that is basically a switch, so you can flick it over and run on your own solar, when there is an outage. That device is currently halfway through the approvals process to be used here in Aust. It is basically necessary because of the way the grid connect system works - if there is an outage they can't have any power feeding back down the lines if people are working on them. They were hopeful that this device would be available here towards the end of this year.

And then you see the stories on the TV about how they are taking the solar generated and on selling it at (substantial) profit as green power and also trading it as carbon credits to big business. So :roll: who really knows what is going on.

All very confusing, and I gues the info you get can be largely dependant on whether the person you are talking to is trying to sell you something or not

Its such an important thing to change the way we generate power, and with the fantastic big yellow power resource in the sky we have here, it needs to be a simple, accessible thing to do.
~ Jo
_________________
Two roads diverged in a wood and I -
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.
~ Robert Frost

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Mon Mar 09, 2009 5:30 pm

You lucky lass Jo, we considered staying up in Perth so we could go to the home show but in the end decided we had too much to do here at home.

Thank you for giving us your 5cents worth (inflation you know) ;) One isn't really sure what to beleive these days as often the information is confusing. While I have no idea what is really going on I am quite sure that someone somewhere will be making an handsome profit from those of us who do go into solar power.

I had a call from the Ecosmart office today and it seems I may not be able to get solar power through them at all, same reason as Damaris - not living in the metro area. Same old same old, if one chooses to live in the country then one can forget any or most of the services that are either available or become available to those in the city.
The chap who called is looking into it as I pointed out to him that it did not say anywhere on the site or in the paper that it was not available to county people. Not that I expect this to change anything.

Oh well, we still want solar power so I guess I will go into the solar shop down in Albany and have a talk to the chap down there then make a decision as to what to do. Nothing gained nothing ventured as they say. :D

Kathleen
Last edited by Shadowgirlau on Thu May 13, 2010 7:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

minnie
Posts: 2700
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:23 am
Location: Alice, West of Casino, NSW
Contact:

Re: Solar Power

Postby minnie » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:59 am

Hi Jo,

That's some good information, even for us over here in NSW... not that our state government will do anything other than close everything down.

Most of the good solar work is coming out of China and California, by the people from Sydney Uni who the last government wouldn't fund at all!

The switch thing, would really make things better a bit like solar hot water where you can through the switch (we had it like that in Lismore, turned off the electric backup in summer, and sometimes didn't notice until a cold wet week in winter that we forgot to turn it on again).

It will be interesting to see how it all pans out, in my opinion it's the way to go and more the merrier.

Hi Kathleen, yes rural living misses out on an amazing number of things... we have a water tank deal here but only for town, so if out of town it up to you to pay full price. I sometimes wonder what we pay rates for with, no water, no sewerage, no garbage collection (and pay at the tip), road only given a scrape about every 1-2 years, don't cut the grass on the road side, don't like peoples cattle eating it, don't get rid of the weeds... I could go on... :evil:
:D
Vicki

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:05 pm

You know Vicki I often wonder what would happen if everyone in a given rural area refused to pay their rates unless they were given access to similar schemes ie, solar and rebates on items such as water tanks etc.

Where my Mum lives they have dirt roads, they were the only people on that road initially though over the years others eventually took up the land behind (as they do). Well once all the blocks were taken and being used and the roads started deteriorating people began to get upset because their council was always saying they didn't have enough money in the budget to take the grader out there and grade the road this year sort of thing. Must have been about 5 yrs worth of griping to the council before the community association sent the council a letter on behalf of the community and signed by everyone in the streets that had dirt roads, saying that no one would be paying their rates until they were accorded the same services as people who lived closer to town.

The council were out there with in month.One can only assume that there were too many ratepayers refusing to pay for the council to seek restitution from them all. :)

There are some things that I am not fussed about on the whole although there are others which cause some angst such as the solar deal and so on.

Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

minnie
Posts: 2700
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:23 am
Location: Alice, West of Casino, NSW
Contact:

Re: Solar Power

Postby minnie » Tue Mar 10, 2009 3:33 pm

Hi Kathleen,

Yes I never underestimate the power of one, it's just getting everyone to stand together on an issue.

So often country people don't want to 'rock the boat' and although they gripe they won't stand up and be counted at all.

Something that often annoys me no end is when people complain about government and say this one or other is hopeless not doing the job etc when you ask who are you voting for next election 'oh that person' and when asked why, 'I always vote that way'... go figger eh... sheeple!
:roll:
Vicki

rdtj04
Posts: 333
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:58 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Re: Solar Power

Postby rdtj04 » Tue Mar 10, 2009 4:35 pm

Don't want to put a damper on the wander of conversation, back to solar ladies. :lol: :D

I just got a call from the same people, Kathleen. She checked and said that i would be able to get it but at an extra cost due to extra traveling. My 1kW unit would cost $2790.00. It is six panels. I said I wanted an inverter that was upgradable. Extra panels worked out to $1500.00 each. With an upgradable inverter it now costs $3140.00. Doable I think. You can then add up to another six apparently. Every two gets you another KW. Apparently the rebate is active currently till 30.6.09 but the govt is able to pull the plug any time. Nothing in stone. Apparently those people over in WA :D , have just come on line and the rebates are going through the roof so govt is a little overwhelmed at the moment....

Anyway just thought I would write down all the details before I forget. She is emailing me everything this arvo and then I can talk to Russell about it but looks a goer at this stage.

Jo can you please tell me if the switch has to be amongst the initial installation or can be added later????

Thanks
Cheers

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:26 pm

Thanks for the added info Damaris, the Ecosmart people still haven't called me back yet so I am none the wiser for myself at the moment.

Most things seem to cost less over in the Eastern States so by our prices here you have a good price including the travel.
Ours under the same company start at $2695. I would also like everything to be upgradeable when/if we get it installed.
When I spoke to the person from Ecosmart yesterday he said the average price was $34...? - $3600.
From what he said another 6 panels will upgrade you to a 2KW unit. He took great pains to tell me it wont power my whole house all the time but I am not worried about that at this time, rather just off setting the cost of the power that I do use now.
Thanks Again Damaris, sorry but you know me, I am apt to go off topic from time to time. :lol:

Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

Mojojo
Posts: 501
Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2008 8:01 pm
Location: Perth and Donnybrook, WA

Re: Solar Power

Postby Mojojo » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:09 pm

I think from memory they said that the switch could be added later, but not 100% on that.

It is good to hear stories of people actually succeeding in getting the services they pay for - the road grading story!

The rest of the home show was not great - unless you are building or renovating a house with no expense spared.
I went with Mum cos she had 2 free tickets from somewhere, but didn't think it would have been worth the entrance fee otherwise.

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:53 pm

Jo, I have been to several home shows over the years and would have to say that on the whole we have not really been that impressed with what was on offer. Mainly because as you say it is often a case of - plenty to take on board if money is no object. :)

We have from time to time taken some of the ideas onboard and adapted them to what we can afford with varying results.

It would be great if they did a home show for DIY'ers or renavating on a budget.

Kathleen
Last edited by Shadowgirlau on Tue May 05, 2009 9:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Mon May 04, 2009 10:06 pm

Well today was a good day on more than one front but particularly on the solar power front. We received confirmation of our rebate acceptance. Shall receive the full rebate which means solar power is now a definate possibility.
Shall have to start a budget for it as it must be installed by the 21st of Jan 2010.



Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

minnie
Posts: 2700
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:23 am
Location: Alice, West of Casino, NSW
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Re: Solar Power

Postby minnie » Tue May 05, 2009 8:38 am

Great news Kathleen,

Look forward to hearing how it all goes.
:D
Vicki

Shadowgirlau
Posts: 2281
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Re: Solar Power

Postby Shadowgirlau » Tue May 05, 2009 9:22 am

Thankyou Vicki,

Sorting a budget out for it today (hopefully). We have gone for the 2Kw as it is upgradeable further so although it wont provide all our power needs at the moment it will hopefully lesson our cost some with the increases about to come online.
Have been keeping an eye on our usage and we use on average 12Kw per day with all our pumps and such. Each Kw unit will provide 5 units per day so with 2 Kw we should only have to pay for for the remaining 2 units of power per day in theroy.

One of my friends is waiting until the new solar power rebate comes in on July 1st as she is in the over $100,000 a year bracket now so won't be means tested I think she said. She also said that the 2 units like mine will cost her over $4,000 but she will be able to apply for a REC credit from tax each year of up to $840 per year for 5 years which means the units will have cost her nothing by the end of this time. I am yet to look into this for myself (a lack of time at the moment) although i shall be doing so.

When talking to my visitor yesterday I learned that her friend who lives over behind us (we can't see them from here) has solar and also added wind power which goes to the batteries. Something else to look into I think.

Gosh where will it all stop?

Kathleen
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon


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