Instructables

Step 8: In Production

Picture of In Production
If I see that voltage wise the maximum output has been reached, I can say that the panels are working fine and do the give so far an average of 500Wh per week. Now the critics among us will say that this is nothing, but given that the panels have the potential to produce more as if I only change the facing/angle, the panels are smaller than a standard panel plus it are only 3 panels they do fine. Plus my aim was to overcome the standby appliances in the house so you can say that I succeeded. Apart from the durability (this test is currently on going), I can say that a home made panel is working just as good as a panel bought in a shop.
breunor2 years ago
Definitely per day, as he was saying about 65w per panel times 3 panels is 195w, times X hours of sun per day on average. Where I live it's 14 cents per KWh, so he saves 7 cents a day (optimally set up maybe 10 cents), and $25.55 a year, so about a 25 year payback on the $600+ cost to set up, not including the interest which could be earned if you invested that $600 up front. Add the fact that cell performance degrades over time (warranties on commercial ones allow for performance loss over time) and it'll more likely be 30-35 years, or never if you allow 2-3% interest earned on say a $600 CD investment.

I'd love to use such a system if it were viable, but that's only true if you start off the grid and would have to pay up front to get tied to the grid, matching the cost of a PV install. If you're already on the grid, conserving power and being more efficient is the best money saving option.

Attach those phantom load appliances to power strips that you can switch off, or to outlets which are controlled by a wall switch, to eliminate that load.
dome_head3 years ago
Good information. I am motivated to build my own system now. Thanks!
bahi3 years ago
I think 500Wh per week is a mistake, maybe 500Wh per day (500Whx7=3500Wh).
Very good and useful instructable anyway. Thanks