Thursday, February 24, 2011

Solar Panels 3 months later

Well, it's been over 3 months since I first tied the inverter to the grid and our solar panels started producing electricity.

With the net-meter, we get a 1 for 1 credit for all excess electricity that the solar panels collect. It has not been sunny enough to roll the meter all the way back to zero. Over the past 3 months, we have used 524 kWh more than the solar panels produced.

In December (the darkest month of the year), our usage exceeded production by 310 kWh.
In January, it exceeded by 110 kWh.
In February, we had our first surplus ever.  67 kWh.
The city power meter got as high as 590 kWh but over the past 4 weeks is making its way back down. And the days are only getting longer.  

Though I am months away from actually breaking net zero, it's looking like we will have an excess of nearly 100 kWh/month on average.  This will come in handy to reduce gasoline consumption when my number comes up on the Nissan Leaf electric car waiting list. 

Imagine, powering your whole house and driving to work all for free using just energy from the sun.  No pollution, no foreign oil, just clean, sexy, solar power made in your own backyard.