How Long Should Panels Last?

Discussion in 'Solar Power' started by Yorick, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. Yorick

    Yorick Funster

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    Thinking of installing solar power to run the house. Gonna be a big initial expenditure so want them to last a few years.

    Anybody done it for a house?

    Cheers
     
  2. Khizzie

    Khizzie Funster

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    Nope but had a large one on my narrowboat.had it fitted in 2000 ,sold boat in 2012 ,and have seen boat since with the owner saying he has had no problem with it .so that's 16yrs so far . ..Roy
     
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  3. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    20-25 years is about the expected life
     
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  4. Baileysbus

    Baileysbus Funster

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    Yup. We have them but that's when the FIT payment was up at about 22p/kWh. Had them 4 years now and just about got my initial outlay back already. Watch out for cheapo inverters. Ours failed and wasn't repairable.
    Panels do deteriorate over time but ours are still chucking power out so all good so far (y)
    Went for the full 4kw allocation. Not cos I'm any particular eco warrior or anything, just that it makes ££ ........ the FIT payment lasts 25 years (or did for us). So after the middle of next year or thereabouts, we're bringing in about £1k in a good year and of course reducing our energy bills. Better than having it sat in the bank.
    Not sure if I'd do it again with the current payment rates though .......(n)
     
  5. Langtoftlad

    Langtoftlad Funster Life Member

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    When I was in Oz, people were complaining that the FIT payments were to be reduced... their Energy Minister responded that as the cost of installing solar had fallen dramatically so should the FIT, as it was a subsidy paid by everyone.
    Yes some early adopters would benefit, but relatively few, they were encouraged to take the gamble especially when the costs were very much higher - and now everyone benefits, lower installation costs, more installations, more green energy at lower subsidies.

    Made sense to me.
    Seems various Governments thinks the FIT should be related to installation prices.
     
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  6. Baileysbus

    Baileysbus Funster

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    Yup, I agree. Even though I'm going to benefit in the long run, it is everyone else who's paying for my privilege and benefit so I'm very lucky in that sense.
    When the FIT rate was up over 40p at the beginning, I knew folk who were shelling out over £12k to get the 4kw panel array installed. The rate dropped to 22p and so did the capital cost strangely enough......I bought at just under £6k
    It's the same with all these govt grant deals,.......the supplier wins and so do I, but it's everyone else that's paying for it.
     
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  7. Langtoftlad

    Langtoftlad Funster Life Member

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    The grants & subsidies are a political decision, to "promote green energy for the sake of the planet at the expense of the cheaper alternatives"
    It's a balancing act, some winners some losers - I recall some suppliers feeling they had been cutoff at the knees when the FIT was reduced.
    I don't think it's well understood that the FIT payments are compensation for the extra costs of installation, so that when the price of panels fall so will the subsidy so that the time to recover those costs remains broadly the same.
     
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  8. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    i bought some seconhand in morocco 14 yrs ago . they are still working on my trailer . dont know the full age of them. .i also have some new ones on the trailer and they do put a little more power in . but hardly noticeable. the first panels were 200 quid each for 80wt panels secon hand . 4 years ago i paid 150 quid each for some new ones . same size . today its about 60 quid new for same size . but thats life .
    in a house its fitting the inverter etc thats the problem specially if you want to feed the grid .
    in summer i power fridge and freezer plus odd items from a lead i bring in off the trailers inverter ,saves a few shilling . over the years i reckon an under counter fridge costs 20p a day to use . the freezer about 12p. hardly going to make me rich.
     
  9. Yorick

    Yorick Funster

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    Thanks for all the help. As we're in Lanzarote we won't have a lot of the problems mentioned above. Just lots and lots of sunshine :)
     
  10. Baileysbus

    Baileysbus Funster

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    Tickety boo.......a no brainer then (y)
     
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