Installing solar panels isn’t for the faint of heart. Glad these guys aren’t bothered by heights or uneven roof surfaces. It really does take all kinds of people to make the world go ’round.

Additional solar panels are being added to our 18 panel array currently provided by Sunpower. We are not producing enough energy to cover our demand and end up settling with Edison for over a thousand dollars annually. This is not a good thing.

We are using SUNRUN for this installation. 8 to 10 new panels will go up, and a Tesla Rechargeable Battery will be part of the arrangement. We have chosen not to purchase any equipment, but to pay for power generated. Our final cost is 21 cents per kilowatt hour. This undercuts Edison by 4 cents per hour. We locked in a long-term rate agreement, so even if Edison raises rates, we won’t be affected. And believe me when I tell you, Edison will NEVER lower rates. Contact me if you’re interested and I’ll share my SUNRUN rep’s contact info with you. His name is Aaron.

Edison uses what they call “net metering.” When there is ample sunlight, power is produced, and energy not being consumed flows into the grid. This unused power causes the meter to “turn backwards.”

When consumption is greater than production, the meter turns “forward,” meaning we are now paying Edison for power they are providing. We are always using Edison’s power at night and on cloudy days. Adding panels is one thing, adding a battery as a “sponge” to absorb and store energy for use “after dark” is another. Just as a sponge stores water and can be wrung out, so to can a battery store energy and be “wrung out” until depleted. The size of your sponge dictates the amount of water available in the sponge, as does the size and type of battery determine the amount of energy stored.

The addition of the extra panels and the battery should ensure that we are not dependent on Edison for anything more than the grid access. My desire is to pay Edison ZERO dollars for energy production. If I could go “off grid” entirely, I would like that.

The Tesla battery provides for entire house coverage for 12 hours in case of an Edison-created blackout. When the sun goes down, the battery supplies power to the inverter, giving us energy to power our lives. The battery will also provide energy on cloudy days, or when the sun just isn’t providing enough energy to meet our demands due to photons going on strike. Hey, you never know.


CONSULTATIONMonday, January 17: Met with Aaron from SUNRUN for intitial consultation. If you are considering solar for your home, I can give you Aaron’s contact info. Very professional, personable individual.

Below are the 7 steps of solar. We have completed the Consultation phase, and are entering the Site Survey phase next. Again, there have been ZERO dollars exchanged at this point in time. There will be ZERO dollars exchanged until power is actually generated.

SITE SURVEY — Thursday, January 20: Meet with SUNRUN site survey team to gather data on physical structure and panels, inverter, battery placement, electrical panel capability and more.