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Case Study: battery storage to use solar power - at night

Problem

Until now, the electricity generated from the sun by solar PV installations could only be used during daylight hours. Any excess was fed to the national grid in return for a payment called the Feed-in Tariff (FiT).

 

Starting from mid-February 2016, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) proposes drastic cuts to the FiT.

 

Situation

Our long time client, Harry Alston, was very pleased with the solar panels we installed in 2011 on the south-facing roof of his house in Sussex. Friends had told him that solar panels would be profitable, and Which? magazine suggested Solar4us as a supplier.

 

He said: “In the past year, the panels have earned us £2,100. They’ve probably paid for themselves already and that’s a good return. Solar4us were thoroughly straightforward and honest, and they organised it all.”

 

Knowing there is now a way to store the electricity generated by solar panels for overnight use, Harry asked us to install a new system on his property in Norfolk.

 

Solution

On Harry’s behalf, we researched a German system that combines Panasonic solar panels with Lithium-Ion batteries.

 

Harry’s system comprises two 2.4kwh Li-Ion batteries, with the option of adding another two later. If there is not enough energy stored in the batteries, power can be topped up from the National Grid.

 

Results

As with any new system, it will take a while to achieve return on investment, but Harry’s annual energy bills should see a significant reduction overall.

 

Harry said: “Even on the first day, when there was only an hour or two of sunlight, the meter showed 5 kwh credit. The system already seems to be working quite nicely, and Solar4us were very professional, friendly and helpful.”

 

In future, Harry plans to invite us to connect the system to the immersion heater. Before charging the batteries, he will then achieve constant hot water as well as heating, without needing any plumbing, pipes or tubes on the roof. He has asked Solar4us to install a similar system at his home in Heathfield, Sussex. There’s no better recommendation than a repeat customer, and we’re happy to be able to help.

Late News:  Dec 2015

On Harry's recommendation we installed a two battery system at the Welcome Baptist Church in Heathfield, Sussex

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