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12Bore

New Solar/PV challenge

About 2 years ago we opened our new Chapel and Community Centre.
Well, we are now debt free on our build (final cost approx £1.4M  ), and are looking at the next stage of development. One of the thing we wanted for the new building was to make it a green, and economical as possible. We couldn't afford everything at initial build but some things are now markedly cheaper than they were 2 years ago
I have now been given the task of investigating the installation of solar PV, initially on the single storey roof at the SSE end of the building, (possibly with an extension later to the WSW facing portion of the 2 storey centre section as a separate project).
The roof section I'm looking at is approx 6m across the top ridge, 9m at the side ridge and 16m along the lower edge, am I right in thinking that there should be room enough for an approx 4Kw/h array?
I know I need to look for MCS certification, and that Chinese built panels now attract a Euro duty of approx 11% (and that this will rise come August), but online prices seem to be anywhere between £5k and £14k for very similar looking systems, which is why I contacted 3 installers this morning to ask them to quote.
Tips, help and suggestions welcome...
sod

Great going   would love to hear how you get on. Many years ago we looked at doing it here and going off grid but far to dear then all the best
escape

A good Forum I have found in the past is one at Navitron.
They cover all sorts of alternative energies and a few are home made solutions.
But for a general idea on costs etc, and getting a better understanding on what is involved, what you can do, then its a good forum.

They also sell "DIY Kits" so if you know a good electrician  
12Bore

escape wrote:
A good Forum I have found in the past is one at Navitron.
They cover all sorts of alternative energies and a few are home made solutions.
But for a general idea on costs etc, and getting a better understanding on what is involved, what you can do, then its a good forum.

They also sell "DIY Kits" so if you know a good electrician  

Yup, I was mooching around the Navitron Forum last night, you are right, there is loads of info on there, trouble is it a bit like walking into a library because you've heard about books... I'll mooch some more this evening.
I can't use kits/diy because it's not my property, shame because access is a doddle
Of course, the fun bit is that if all goes well "WE" will have done a great job, but, if there's ever a problem, guess who's fault it will be.
sod

  yep evert time
12Bore

I had a meeting with an installer yesterday, 1.5 hours of surveying, measuring, talking  and checking. Quite impressed with the chap, sensible and down to earth, lots of good advice and suggestions.
Full tender and specs have arrived, price £7k, inc a premium for using all black panels, VAT and scaffolding hire costs and price is fixed, they will also handle all the paperwork and registrations and give us a tutorial lesson on handover (yes, this should be standard, but they have put it on paper), overall it seems reasonable.  
I ended up contacting 4 companies, this company came out and did the job properly, 1 gave me a telephone call and a price based on a "survey" they had done on Google Earth, I asked them to e-mail me prices and specs, they have not done so and two have failed to respond, there must be plenty of work out there for them...  
Now all I have to do is to convince the rest of the Church Council to agree to the proposal...
12Bore

Well, I got the quote and took it to the rest of the Church Council.
At best it was 50/50 as to whether they would agree, then I did my presentation and, ... unanimous agreement from all 14 members (I abstained from the vote).
Upshot: scaffolding went up today and the installation of x16 250w panels and associated gubbims starts 09:00 tomorrow morning, with a formal handover on Friday and we get the higher rate FIT rather than the new, lower rate that will apply from Monday.

To say that I'm chuffed is an understatement  
horace

Well done you  
sod

great to hear you did a great job there
12Bore

All in and running, I'll post a pic when the rain stops
12Bore

Completed installation, 16 panel, 4Kwp now up and running - and it's stopped raining!  
horace

Looks smart  
Digindeep

Pat on the back that man....  
sod

Gee the elders/committee did a great job    
12Bore

sod wrote:
Gee the elders/committee did a great job    

 
Mari wen

Every time the sun shines you'll be counting the pennies saved (and earned). Since I had mine installed, I've spent a lot of time reading the sky and cloud patterns!
confused

The best thing i ever did , i still have one more payment to come then i will have had them in 2 years my payments so far are £2180, plus what i have saved on my power bills ,
Woodburner

Am looking into this for Mum atm, just had a verbal quote for 10 panels, £7,500 all in.  

12bore, who did you go with?

confused, are you saying that you won't be getting any more payments after that one?

What is the status of govt. subsidies/ payments etc. now?
12Bore

Hi Woodburner
I went with a small, family, company from Wigan, so not ideal for you, £7.5k sounds pricey for a 2.5kw/P system, I/we paid less than that for 4kw/P.
Our rates are 15.4p/kWh for generation and 4.64p/kWh for export, these figures are guaranteed for 20 years from date of registration. We also have a commercial grade kitchen on the premises, so I had the input from the panels fed into the kitchen circuit, that way they feed the circuit with the heaviest constant demand, so we use as much of what we generate as possible.
I found this website useful, http://www.solarguide.co.uk/solar-pv-calculator#bestresult enter your details and it gives a reasonable indication of what you can expect, there is also a useful guide to prices and a link to local installers.
confused

Woodburner wrote:
Am looking into this for Mum atm, just had a verbal quote for 10 panels, £7,500 all in.  

12bore, who did you go with?

confused, are you saying that you won't be getting any more payments after that one?

What is the status of govt. subsidies/ payments etc. now?

No we will be getting regular payments , the best thing to do is google it , you will find an easy explanation of the rates , etc , on the website , all the best . go for it .
Woodburner

Thanks both. I've given solarguide Mum's details so will hopefully get some better quotes, but we're cooling off massively of the idea because most of Mum's consumption is at the times when there will be little to no production (evening and winter) so she'll be totally reliant on payments to recoup costs.
We'd both rather have something that actually cuts our bills. Thinking about heat pumps atm.  
12Bore

Woodburner wrote:
Thanks both. I've given solarguide Mum's details so will hopefully get some better quotes, but we're cooling off massively of the idea because most of Mum's consumption is at the times when there will be little to no production (evening and winter) so she'll be totally reliant on payments to recoup costs.
[b]We'd both rather have something that actually cuts our bills[/b]. Thinking about heat pumps atm.  

Insulation, insulation, insulation, insulation, insulation, insulation, insulation, insulation etc...
sapphire


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