DIY solar: Looking for information?
Is there a similar forum to GBA or JLC that has good discussions about solar?
Now that the four 1:1 mini-splits are installed and we’ve upgraded to 200A service, my next project is to add Solar (PV) to our house. We’ve gotten quotes from a few big name companies, and the mark-up is insane (seems to be 100% above mail order hardware cost), so I’m considering doing it myself. I’m very comfortable with design, engineering, and construction. It’ll take many lunch breaks and evenings to learn about the local utility (Eversource in Connecticut) installation requirements, as well as getting familiar with the different products out there.
I’m looking at a 7.5 kw grid-tied system, likely with 315+ watt panels since we’re limited to the less shaded roof over the garage. Hardware cost seems to be about $11k online for systems like this.
The install looks similar enough to other electrical and construction work, and doesn’t seem intimidating, and I’m having a hard time seeing the value of a 100% mark-up (quotes all came in at $25k+, but they justified it based on the fed and state tax credits). I’ll likely do the bulk of the work, and have an E1 electrician friend of mine do the final review/connection for the utility.
Connecticut’s net metering law that grand-fathers us for 20 years expires at the end of this year, so there is a bit of urgency.
Energize CT has a page here that discusses small solar, and even a spreadsheet with $/kw install costs… Some are down to $2/kw, but those seem to be leases where the companies don’t charge as much to their customers.
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