Your Questions About Solar Panels For Home

William asks…

describe electricity generating potentials for home use parabolic solar collector into smaller solar panel?

I am trying to understand why a home made system of inexpensive parabolic mirrors linked into a smaller series of solar panels for home use is not available. I understand solar tracking issues but believe this could be overcome.

ssadmin answers:

Focusing too much light onto a photo voltaic cell will damage it beyond repair…They melt
Its the same as focusing the suns rays with a magnifying glass to set fire to things.

Robert asks…

DIY Solar panels for home?

Im interested in constructing my own solar panels out of individual photovoltaic cells, I m a resident in the UK and Id like to attatch them to my south facing shed roofs. After a bit of research ive found the cells for £400 for 300 pieces ( 6 x 6 polycrstalline) or £250 for 100 pieces ( 6 x 6 mono crystalline), each individual cell will generate a max output of just over 4W, so in theory I can generate over a KW on my shed roofs. What are the major advantages of mono over polycrystalline?

Will it be easy to connect these to the house's power and will it be possible to sell any excess back to the power companies?

Two of us live here but we're never in so we dont use much electricity, apparently between 3 and 4 KW is the household average usage so I doubt we use more than 2KW, Please let me know if this sounds about right for the amount Im planning to buy.

Are there any grants available for cost of materials? as the government usually pays 50% up to £8000 for domestic solar energy projects? although these are usually supplied and fitted by a registered firm.

Has anyone inititiated a similar idea themselves?

any feedback on any of these questions would be greatly appreciated!


ssadmin answers:

Most of the test on solar cells with MONO AND POLY is the volts most poly is around .50 to .55 volts and on test mono is around .58 to .60 volts per sell most of the time the amps seem to be the same
so per size you get a little more watts from mono but for DIY SOLAR PANELS i would go with poly
this is a link of the solar panel i have Made with two sheets of Glass

If you need solar cells we sell them on

Thanks David

Richard asks…

Can anyone talk me out of installing Solar Panels at home?

For an all up out of pocket cost of $2500 (incl. all rebates), I can install a $14,000 solar panel system. This will generate 8 kwh per day for feeding back into the grid and we get paid for it. When we are at home at night, we then purchase electricity as per normal. A quick calculation states we can save $216 per quarter, or 864 per annum. So this pays for itself in 3 years, then the savings begin. Am I missing anything? Are there other issues or problems I should know about? Thanks!
Thanks, yes it is a great deal. No problems with the rebates not coming through.
Great point, I've just seen that for an 8 kwh / day system, that is the peak and below, it says the average is 4 kwh…so payback is 6 years.
in response to Roderick,
we are in Australia…sorry, should have mentioned this previously.

the system has 6 panels (1020w), has a daily output of peak/avg of 8.0 / 4.0 kwh. It is also flexible so we can add on panels in the future.

the breakdown…
15000 unit, less 8000 from gov't, less 1450 to assign a REC (renewable energy certificate) to the retailer, less 1050 for what they call a strong Aussie dollar discount (they purchased this when AUD was almost on par with UDS), and less 2500 cashback if we pay upfront with a credit card. This gets us to 2000 out of pocket. then there are 500 extra for installing the inverter, brackets for the roof.

Clear Solar are the retailers…they give you an online quote.


ssadmin answers:

Sounds great BUT… That 8kw per day is pie in the sky, as it is probably based on 100% sunshine, and NO smog or smoke in the atmosphere. That's hard to achieve on a day to day basis anywhere in developed nations.

Also, a %14,000 system bottom lining at only $2500 sounds incredible. Sure would hate to see you end up after it's all over finding out that half or more of the discounts and rebates being DENIED, and supplemental billings for cost overruns not anticipated, etc., etc.

Good luck!!!!!

James asks…

What is the average cost to add solar panels for home electricity?

I live in a tri-level home approximately 1400 square feet. I use around 3000 kwh a month and spend 400-500 a month on my electric (only) bill. I figure If Im going to be spending that much anyway, I might as well help the environment and get the tax credit. If you can give me the average cost to add the panels to my home, how many panels I may need, and the average cost savings on an electric bill I would truly appreciate it.

ssadmin answers:

Go here first:

Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency®

They have state by state listings for renewable energy. Then contact your local electric provider and ask them who is licensed by them to do solar installs. You cannot legally do a solar grid-tie yourself.

It's a long term investment, but thin-film solar has come down to $1 a watt, so it's much quicker to get a payback than it was 2 years ago.

You cannot run a/c on solar, it takes too much power. Your 400-500/month bill it probably from heating/cooling cost.
Going direct solar water heating will save you money very quick. Most places encourage it now.

Your utility should also have state sponsored energy conservation programs like energy audits and free or cheap added insulation that would help you cut your bill.

Lizzie asks…

How solar panels work for home ?

ssadmin answers:

The sunlight comes down and hits a photovoltaic cell. Only some are absorbed by this cell and when it is absorbed it is converted into an electron that has energy. As you might know, electricity is the movement of electrons bumping into each other and passing their energy on through a conductor. So the electron produced from the photons in the light is just giving energy to pass around the circuit. The electron produced hits another electron (in the sea of delocalized electrons) and passes more energy on.

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