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Thinking about solar.

Questions and answers about financing the dream, budgets, insurance, investments, taxes, and all things money related.
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tex
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Thinking about solar.

Unread postby tex » Sun Mar 17, 2019 10:05 pm

We bought our boat already equipped with two 84 watt solar panels, but I cleaned and reskinned the pilothouse roof of all devices with the intention of installing 1200 watts of new solar. I may have waited too long. Trumphs new tarrifs on China built solar panels have really boosted the price again. Anybody know of any deals?
When life is hard, eat marshmallows!

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tex
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Re: Thinking about solar.

Unread postby tex » Sat Apr 20, 2019 12:01 am

Apparently, even in spite of the heavy tarrifs put on China solar panels, there are some deals out there. FL is giving some credits toward solar purchase on perminant living residences. I wonder if live-aboard boats qualify.

I thought I’d heard the best of deals until a boat buddy of mine secured two new, high quality 300 watt panels for $150 each. I told him that something had to be wrong with the deal, but we got them mounted on the roof of his Island Packet motor-sailer and they are actually putting out more than they are rated for in direct FL sun. The guy he got them from is a residential installer who often has panels left over from commercial jobs. One might have to wait a few weeks, but he comes up with them. Total cost of the installed system including two of the best controllers (one for each panel), wire, connectors and panel mounting system was still $1000. A 600 watt system for 1K isn’t a bad deal, but condider that if it were four panels instead of two, the wattage would double and the cost per watt would not.

I think I’ll try it.
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scallywag
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Re: Thinking about solar.

Unread postby scallywag » Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:34 pm

I checked my links last week and found the websites are no longer in valid. I wondered what happened. You just told me. Import taxes. Just got around to dreaming again and was shocked to find the sites closed. FPL is still building large arrays to power Florida. Talked to an installer and he said they did not lose one panel during the past two hurricanes. Did a web search and found some suppliers. Guess I will start looking again. :D
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tex
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Re: Thinking about solar.

Unread postby tex » Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:16 pm

Scal: What do you have in mind for wattage. Where would you mount them?
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scallywag
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Re: Thinking about solar.

Unread postby scallywag » Sun Apr 21, 2019 2:59 pm

My thoughts were limited to refrigeration. Cruising, my engine heats the water and charges the starting batteries. When at dockside, everything is charged. I have to mount the solar cells on the dingy hoists. There is not enough room on the top of the cabin and I did not want to put brackets on the side to handle the panels. I am still in the analyzing and thinking mode. With your vessel I would be looking at the top. The number of panels and batteries would be dependent on the draw of the refrigerator. I would not consider an air conditioner or heater.

Dot and John

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