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spainrico Sep 11th 2019 8:02 am

Solar Power
I was recently in Leroy Merlin and saw a solar system for 860€ as I have a large solarium that would make an ideal place to install I am starting to investigate what are the pros and cons - especially what is the total cost and how easy are they to have installed?

Has anyone had a system installed and can comment on what is involved, total costs, maintenance issue, payback period etc. Thanks

Mind you with this awful weather this week assume it would not have been much use at the moment!

bob_bob Sep 11th 2019 1:27 pm

Re: Solar Power
What power are the panels? whats included in the kit? What do you want to power?

In the UK I use a converted barn as a ham radio shack and its all solar powered, payback will take years but for me its been a fun project so the cost is not important,

Notdunroamin Sep 11th 2019 1:33 pm

Re: Solar Power
Depends what you want t do with it.

To run a house independent of mains electricity will cost you upwards of €20k and even ignoring maintenance with that sort of capital cost you may not live long enough to break even let alone show a profit.

I know someone who bought a property in the campo with no mains available and it's cost him €25k+ which is still less than the quote he had from Iberdrola to run a supply to the house.

Mark604 Sep 11th 2019 8:15 pm

Re: Solar Power
".... and it's cost him €25k+ which is still less than the quote he had from Iberdrola to run a supply to the house."
The quote for our house in the campo was 40k and up.
Ten years ago we spent about 15K and it's fine but obviously we have to take care with high power stuff, like hair dryers, but using gas for cooking, solar hot water and just a normal fire is also ok unless it is particularly cold/rainy. It's not a good winter house for sure, but for three quarters of the year it'll do. Hot water bottles in bed, that sort of thing.

The main advantage, is even if the cost for a supply would have been about the same as the cost of the solar installation, we'd still have gone for the solar as we then have no bills for it at all.
Maintenance consists of a weekly wash of the panels and check the battery water. That's it. There's no moving parts, obviously, so it is what it is and doesn't need anything doing to it to keep it going. I buy the distilled water from Carrefour (easiest local supply) to keep the batteries topped up and use quite a lot of litres of it over a year, especially in the summer.

We have six panels, I think they are 100W but don't quote me on that, and twelve large batteries as like the photo in the link, of 2V each, 800Ah and I'm struggling to lift one.
Payback period? Wouldn't have a clue. No idea what a normal bill would be.
I also have three other panels that feed two normal solar batteries of 12V and 150Ah each that run a half horse power swimming pool pump in the summer.

spainrico Sep 12th 2019 7:27 am

Re: Solar Power
I need to go back and talk to someone (usually Leroy merlin very helpful) I am connected to mains Iberdrola but I was just thinking about saving money and being green with a small system to supplement mains supply. With (normally!) so much sun and a large flat roof just seems an ideal opportunity but not interested in spending thousands,

Dxf Sep 12th 2019 8:34 am

Re: Solar Power
Whilst there is "no maintenance costs" for solar panels, there are replacement costs as the system will not last forever. The questions to ask are the life of the solar panel, the life of the batteries and the life of the inverter. All at some time will need replacement; the replacement costs have reduced over the years as panels last longer and give more power, batteries now last for up to 20 years etc.

bob_bob Sep 12th 2019 1:26 pm

Re: Solar Power
A good quality panel should last you twenty years so don't buy cheap its a false economy, same for inverters and batteries, don't buy cheap.

If you want your house to be 'off grid' you need to look at what is using the most power in your home, fridge/freezer/hair dryers/toasters/deep fat fryers/dish washers/clothes washers/dryers sort of thing use a lot of power when used, items you just take for granted normally.

bfg69bug Sep 15th 2019 4:58 pm

Re: Solar Power
Spainrico -

I´ve got a "solar shed" (look on youtube) - led lights in my shed, and all around the garden. We charge our fones when we are outside (via a 10m usb lead from the chinese shop!) and have a car stereo playing music through a couple of speakers while we have a bbq :) I can cut the grass with solar power.. its great :)

the deep cycle battery was 85€ delivered, the panel (260w 12v) was around €160 from ebay spain, the charge controller was about €6 from aliexpress, the inverter is a small 500w one from ali express for about €12 euro (!!) the Led lights are the €6 10w / 240v ones from bricomart. (but i want to change those to led strips on the 12v side.

its all been running for about a year without an issue so far. I´ve still got plenty of power that i can use, and it it starts running short i can always add another battery on to it.

ok i´m not going to run the house on it ever, but its great for a back up FREE power source.

rachelk Sep 17th 2019 5:20 pm

Re: Solar Power
Is it still the case that there are taxes/disincentives for those using solar power in spain or did that change?

bfg69bug Sep 20th 2019 6:33 am

Re: Solar Power
you mean people having to pay tax on the power that they were producing themselves?

as far as I know it only applies if you are producing over 10kw / are grid tied.

dont quote me on it tho...

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