In fact, there was one house in the subdivision right next door and another about a mile away. At the first residence the owner had installed his panels over a two year period with the first installation in 2008. He saved $913.70 on electricity between August 2009 and August 2010. Well that got our attention! He also told us about the incentives offered by CPS and the federal government, a rebate for 50% of the cost up to $30,000 from CPS for the installation and a 30% tax credit on the remaining balance from the Feds. What's really cool about the CPS rebate is you don't even have to worry about it, your solar contractor will deal with the paper work and CPS directly.
So how much would it cost you to install a solar system? Well, here is a handy dandy Solar power energy calculator that estimates the impact of a solar energy system on your electricity bill and your pocket book. Plug in your zip code, select your utility company and your average kilowatt hour usage per month, or your average monthly electrical bill. Here's my calculation
Not exactly cheap, but definitely doable. You can also get Solar Financing from San Antonio Credit Union for as low as 5.75%.System specifications for: San Antonio, TX
Utility: CPS Energy
Solar Radiance: Solar radiance (insolation) is the amount
of solar energy received on a given
surface area in a given time. Commonly
expressed in kilowatt-hours per square
meter per day (kWh/sq m/day). This
measurement varies based on weather
and latitude of the given location.
5.28 kWh/sq m/day Avg. Monthly Usage: This is the amount of electricity you
consume on average every month. It is
either determined by your input or
approximated by your electricity bill
divided by the cost per kilowatt hour
in your area ($0.07886/kWh).
1,620 kWh/month System Size: This approximation is for a system to
produce enough electricity to offset
50% of your yearly usage.
It is determined by taking your avg.
daily usage, and dividing that by your
(solar radiance x 80%). The 80% is used
for the inherent inefficiencies in solar
power systems (95% inverter inefficiency,
89% weather impact, 95% inefficiency due
to soiling, utility, and module
6.37 kW Roof Size: Approximate roof size needed to
accomodate your solar power system
can be deteremined by taking the
size of the system and dividing by
10 to get the square footage
(10 watts/sq ft).
637 sq ft Estimated Cost: The approximate cost is an estimation
based on a price of $7.00/watt. This is
the average rate, including parts and
installation, for systems above 2kW.
$44,598.45 Post Incentive Cost: The post incentive cost is an estimation
based on the available credits/rebates for
your area. This may include kWh
production incentives for up to 25 years
if applicable in your area. This provides
an approximation of the local/state
incentives, and should only be used as
|From Solar San Antonio|
Here's another cool calculator that estimates your roof's solar potential by using Google satellite maps and your average monthly electricity bill. This calculator tells you how much of your roof is usable to collect solar energy and gives you an average electrical bill per month after a solar installation. The part of your roof that is on the southern exposure is the place you want to put solar panels. Why south, you may ask? Well it has to do with our latitude, or the angle that San Antonio faces the sun. The southern exposure gets the most rays during the day as the sun moves overhead.
Now you may wonder why you would still have an electricity bill if you have a solar array. Unfortunately, the sun doesn't shine 24/7 so during the times when the panels aren't being charged you have to have another source of energy. You could go completely off the grid by installing a generator, but the homeowners we spoke to said that was a lot of hassle and rather expensive. Instead they opted for Windtricity during solar down time. That way all of the energy they use is renewable and doesn't produce CO2 emissions.
list. Also, solar panels aren't the only way to go, you can opt to install solar powered appliances, like water heaters, pool heaters and attic fans.
|Solar Water Heater System|