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selling power to the grid

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by tuppy, Aug 9, 2007.

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  1. tuppy

    tuppy Guest

    Is anybody actually selling power back to the grid? I know there are
    green power credit schemes but this appears to only wind back the
    meter or give you credit. I am trying to figure out which company
    actually gives you hard cash for electricity sold to the grid. Im
    wondering If I can make even a small income from it?
  2. Phil Allison

    Phil Allison Guest


    ** If YOU can make 240 VAC electricity, at home, for under 12 cents per
    kWh - the world wants to hear from YOU.

    Seriously - in some countries, legislation forces energy suppliers to pay
    around double the retail cost of AC power to folk who have solar panels
    installed and feed back their excess capacity.

    Helps with peak demand on hot days I suppose.

    Very politically correct move.

    ....... Phil
  3. kreed

    kreed Guest

    I think you would make a lot more by being careful with your usage,
    dont leave unused lights on,
    use lower wattages if practical, use the line not the clothes dryer

    Another problem is that if you sell power, you probably have to pay
    tax on that income,
    whereas what you use (for domestic purposes) wouldn't be a tax
    deduction against it.

    How do you plan to generate the electricity ?
  4. Mauried

    Mauried Guest

    Most of the Power Companies in Australia that do give you credit for
    buying back your power pay you about 1/2 for it than what they charge
    you for it.
    In Germany things are a lot better, you get the equiv of 75C per Kwh
    for what you sell back.

    As for making an income , good luck.
  5. Mr.T

    Mr.T Guest

    Thank god we don't pay that much for electricity here just yet!

  6. Poxy

    Poxy Guest

    I've claims of people with solar installations selling excess power back
    into the grid, but this tends to be in articles or promotional material, and
    seems more of an implication that it *could* be done rather than actually
    happening. I guess the inverter would have to be synchronised to the mains
    frequency, but to actually get power to flow into the grid it'd have to
    output a voltage marginally higher than the grid voltage?

    I also wonder what happens if the power authority needs to isolate a
    circuit, or a power line goes down, or there's a blackout? Would the lack of
    grid voltage cause the inverter to shut down or would there be voltages in
    the grid where linesman wouldn't be expecting to find it?
  7. gcd

    gcd Guest

    No probs,
    you can when we go nuclear with no subsidies!

  8. Forget it, unless you do it for the love of it. You will never get
    your money back, well, not for say 20 years.

    Michael mobs does it, I've been to his place and seen his
    installation, and he mentioned that he actually got a cash return. No
    idea who he is (or was) with though.

    Plenty of others feed back to the grid as well, but now that you can
    simply buy 100% accredited solar or wind power (at a premium), it's
    far far cheaper to simply do that than have your own local power
    generation system. If you are in a windy rural area then perhaps you
    could feed back wind power, the installation costs would be less than
    solar, as wind generators are getting cheaper and popular. But forget
    trying to make any sort of income from it.

  9. **Well, yes, but you are neglecting several facts and probabilities:

    * Solar cells are falling (slowly) in price and increasing (slowly) in
    * Electricity is VERY cheap in Australia, by world standards. The price
    will go up, as the cost of generating one's own power falls.
    * The upcoming carbon trading will push up the cost of coal generated power.

    Of course, all these things will reduce the cost of large scale
    renewable energy too.

    I've done the sums for my place. For around $18k, I can generate around
    33% of all my power needs. If I fill the pool in, that balance becomes
    around 50%. That, allowing for the $8k grant form the gummint, means a
    20 year payback. If electricity was the same price as it is in (say)
    California, then payback would be less than 15 years. In Germany,
    payback would occur in less than 10 years. In Italy, around 7 years. In
    Denmark, around 5 years. The one, certain thing is that electricity
    prices will rise in the near future. If Australia is dumb enough to go
    the nuclear route, then prices will rise even more dramatically.

    If I could expect a 5 year payback, I would jump in right now. And, I
    suspect, so would a lot of other people.

    Further: A friend's girlfriend works for BP Solar. They can't keep up
    with the present demand for cells.

    Trevor Wilson
  10. Mauried

    Mauried Guest

    This is a good utility for working out the payback.
    Use version 1 and use your closest locality.
  11. tuppy

    tuppy Guest

    I am hoping the labor party gets in, then increases the solar rebate
    as promised.
    then Ill buy 20K worth of panels with inbuilt mini inverters on the
    back of them.
    ie no batteries at all. Then get a rebate back of $8- $10k.

    So I would be looking at getting back $10-$12K generating as much
    power as possible and not actually using it myself. This
    installation would be on my weekender house which is mostly
    unoccupied. Thus I dont want credit, just hard cash to pay off these
    panels asap!! Problem is integral only give you credit (yes at 1/2
    rate u buy it) but better than nothing. Goal is to get these panels
    paid off in record time..
  12. Phil Allison

    Phil Allison Guest


    ** Knew you had some crackpot scheme like this in mind.

    ....... Phil
  13. Mr.T

    Mr.T Guest

    I'm sure of it, that's why I said "just yet" :)

  14. Ross Herbert

    Ross Herbert Guest

    I doubt that even in Victoria they will pay you a higher rate for
    power you put into the grid compared to what they charge you for power
    you take from the grid. Power utilities (Australian) don't usually
    work that way.

    I had a look over the Origin Energy website to see if I could find
    anything regarding solar energy buy back rates but this information is
    not obvious anywhere. In contrast, Synergy in WA, are completely open
    about it
  15. Terryc

    Terryc Guest

    I think those two statements are contradictory. My 2c is that until the
    world gets another large scale solar panel fabrication plant, then solar
    panels are going to stay expensive. Prices jumped a few years back due
    to the serious under supply of panels.
  16. Yep, I'd love to put solar cells on my roof and have a grid inverter,
    but because I can now simply buy 100% solar or wind power from the
    grid (albeit at a 50% increase in price over coal), it's a no-brainer
    at present. Things will eventually change though.
    They haven't been able to for many years now.
    And they like the keep the prices artificially high as well, but that
    will eventually change as well.

  17. NL

    NL Guest

    ok so anybody have any idea on how much would it cost to power a home 24/7
    via solar?

    i would imagine i would need the usual stuff like 12v lighting, 12v
    appliances, inverters for 240 volt.

    i am looking at doing a green project as i just got a block of land out at
    mudgee and i stuck one of those shed type homes on it.
  18. **How long is a piece of string? There are too many variables to take
    into account.
    **Budget for at least $20k, less the gummint rebate ($8k), if you are
    VERY frugal with electricity and you don't use any of the following:

    * Electric heating and cooling.
    * Electric ovens (microwaves are OK).
    * A pool filter.

    If you want all that stuff too, then you'd better bump your budget up to
    at least $40k. Plus batteries. Add another (say) $5k for them.

    Trevor Wilson
  19. Do you have any idea of your likely consumption?
    There can be a 10 to 1 difference in power consumption between homes
    depending on a whole host of factors.
    You have to know *exactly* what stuff you need a before you can price
    a suitable solar system.
    Do you have access to the grid?
    Did you consider any of this before you bought the block of land and
    plonked your shed down?
    Is it windy out at Mudgee?

  20. swanny

    swanny Guest

    If they did we could just sell them back the power we buy from them and make a
    nice profit for doing absolutely nothing.
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