Forum Home» Green & Ethical MoneySaving

The Great 'Get Paid To Generate Energy' Hunt - Page 4

New Post Advanced Search

The Great 'Get Paid To Generate Energy' Hunt

edited 20 April 2010 at 9:21PM in Green & Ethical MoneySaving
651 replies 108.3K views
1246766

Replies

  • RMoleRMole Forumite
    1 posts
    Why do you disregard heat pumps ? You can take heat from the ground, water or just the air. They are a proven generating method in use in Canada and Sweden and the air pump in particular can be quite easy to install. You also get the rebate on the amount of power you produce.
  • CardewCardew Forumite
    28.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Rampant Recycler
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    I am in the process of planning for a new house and looking to have about the same amount of solar PV,
    Dave

    Do you appreciate that the high rate of FIT only applies when(retro) fitting to an existing house.

    For solar PV incorporated into a new build the rate is less.
  • m_burnsm_burns Forumite
    2 posts
    I'm curretly looking at micro CHP. Has anyone got any idea how long payback is on this
  • edited 21 April 2010 at 5:59PM
    CardewCardew Forumite
    28.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Rampant Recycler
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited 21 April 2010 at 5:59PM
    StreetHawk wrote: »
    It is a bit dangerous to compare a money-saving purchase with savings and investments as it can mislead people, but it is more like this:
    If you were asked to pay a lump sum into a savings account that you were told you couldn't withdraw from, but you'd get a small income from it each month you might shy away from it.
    Not many people would commit themselves to it once they were also told it would be at least 10 years before you had received all that money back and started to see any return on it.
    Remember that this is VERY illiquid, meaning it is very difficult to turn it in to cash again . You would probably have to sell your home!

    Finally, let's not forget the effects of Inflation on the value of the money over the long-term and the lost opportunity cost of investing in a compound-interest growth investment in the meantime (interst rates and inflation vary considerably over time)!...

    This is exactly the point that I have been making above and in the other thread.

    To talk of a 5%, 8% or 10% return on your investment in PV is a nonsense.

    If I bought a car for £20k for use as a Taxi and made £2k a year profit, would I be able to claim that I was making a 10% pa return on my investment? or that payback was 10 years?

    I think on the financial forums on MSE I would be a figure of fun!!

    For a start by £20k in a bank @4% would be worth £29,600 after 10 years and the car would be on the scrap heap.

    Much is made of the PV panels being guaranteed for 10 years or 20 years, but the system itself? The standard guarantee is 2 years; if the system is that reliable, why only 2 years?

    Take the quotes above for £15K for a 3.8kW installation and do some simple maths assuming that the output will average 3.5kW over its life(a very generous assumption)

    In round figures the FIT will produce £1450 pa. Using 50%(again generous) in the house @10p/kWh another £175 and 3p/kWh for the exported juice is another £50.

    So at the very most initially you will get an income of £1,675. Subsequently that sum will increase in value with inflation/fuel inlation.

    The only sensible way to work out cost effectiveness is to put your £15k in a long term investment at whatever interest rate you wish to assume.

    You then take your £1675(with the £175/£225 inflated at whatever rate you wish to assume) and invest that in the same long term investment each year.

    It is only when your annual invested savings total reaches the same total as the £15k + compounded interest, that you have broken even.

    You will of course take into account any repairs, replacements you may have to make over the years and deduct those expenses from your annual savings.

    Much as some people avoid the issue it is necessary to clean the panels of grime and bird poo etc(anyone who thinks the rain will wash it off hasn't owned a conservatory with a glass roof) and that might be a problem for some people.

    It obviously is impossible to give an exact figure for the 'Break Even' point as there are too many unknowns - interest rates/inflation/repairs etc.

    However anyone want to hazard a guess on the true 'break even' point. 15 years? do I hear 20 years?
  • edited 21 April 2010 at 6:01PM
    Streethawk_2Streethawk_2 Forumite
    27 posts
    edited 21 April 2010 at 6:01PM
    And I was expecting to flamed!

    I'd expect break-even to come beyond 15 years, closer to 20. Having spent most of the day getting my head around amortisation of a future drop in value I'm not working it out - someone else can...

    I fear that until costs drop considerably and efficiency increases, the only ones making money from home-energy schemes are at the top-end: suppliers, manufacturers, installers. The people buying them are at best getting their money back over a long period whilst the providers enjoy the healthy profits whilst conning people to think they're making a difference to the global environment. Really, they're selling a dream not a tangible solution.

    If you as an individual want to make an investment and save some carbon, spend your £15k on a field and turn it into mixed woodland preserved under trust for perpetuity. You can get a grant for that AND it'll more than likely still be worth what you paid for it in 25 years, rather than getting "recycled" as used parts which is all you can expect from a PV installation.
    AND you'll get free camping holidays, firewood, fruit, nuts, peace, fresh air & exercise, time with your children, something for them to inherit and enjoy with their children, whilst giving lots of creatures and plants somewhere to live.
    Firewood - now THERE's a renewable energy source...

    Rant over. I'm off home. 'Night all :)
    I thought I was a Money Saving Expert - then someone pointed me at Martin Lewis! Now THERE's an expert!!!
  • CardewCardew Forumite
    28.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Rampant Recycler
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    The price bracket I gave isn't necessarily ours ;) but would apply to a decent small to medium sized installer.

    The panels (evac tube) I have on my own house (3 bed, 1 bath) have a predicted yield of 651 kWh each per annum (I have two panels). My house is directly south facing, so two panels is enough, but if you're a bit more west or east you may need 3 panels. So that should give you a rough idea and is probably quite typically of an installation using a reputable installer with fairly decent panels. If your house is bigger, or lots more hot water needs, you may need more panels.

    So you have a predicted yield of 1,302kWh - so that is not far away from the average 1,000kWh in the Government trials - they of course deducted the electrical consumption of the pump needed on the installation. - not cheap as it is daytime @10p/kWh

    So even if your south facing panels did produce the full 1,302kWh you are talking about savings of about £35 to £130 per year.

    Now your figure was £3000 to £6000 for an installation(and if I understand you correctly - yours cost more?)

    So please try and persuade us readers how such an 'investment' £3000 to £6000+ to give an income of £35 to £130 a year makes sense.
  • poohbear59poohbear59 Forumite
    4.8K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭✭
    m_burns wrote: »
    I'm curretly looking at micro CHP. Has anyone got any idea how long payback is on this

    Do you have a price for a boiler yet?
    I haven't been able to get any costs for an initial install. We are not on mains gas so are awaiting the production of a plg version in the next couple of months. I was researching the possibility of installing CHP in our barn conversion but haven't got costs for mains gas either.
    Grocery challenge £35/£200 business mortgage £13798))''(+ Barclay's business kitchen loan £7116=Total of £20914, 69% paid off was £68105 Weight to lose [STRIKE]42lbs[/STRIKE] 0 to go!! :D PPI claimed and received £13527 Save 12k in 2017no 116. £0/5000
    'I had a black dog, his name was depression".
  • Cardew wrote: »
    There are other threads on this subject but I really can't let that go unchallenged.

    .....

    So please let us see the calculations you made.

    No problem, the spreadsheet is at home and I won't be back there until next week. If I am wrong (and it is possible, anyone can make a mistake) I'll happily admit it!

    A lot of it did hinge on the hideously inefficient system for heating water that I had previously, including an uninsulated leaking hot water cylinder (which had to be changed anyway). If I had a more efficient boiler/cylinder set up I doubt it would have been worth it.

    Anyway, I'll post back next week with the figures, I've no problem with "putting up or shutting up"!:D
  • edited 21 April 2010 at 7:42PM
    alph250alph250 Forumite
    18 posts
    edited 21 April 2010 at 7:42PM
    Double Post sorry!
  • Cardew wrote: »
    So you have a predicted yield of 1,302kWh - so that is not far away from the average 1,000kWh in the Government trials - they of course deducted the electrical consumption of the pump needed on the installation. - not cheap as it is daytime @10p/kWh

    So even if your south facing panels did produce the full 1,302kWh you are talking about savings of about £35 to £130 per year.

    Now your figure was £3000 to £6000 for an installation(and if I understand you correctly - yours cost more?)

    So please try and persuade us readers how such an 'investment' £3000 to £6000+ to give an income of £35 to £130 a year makes sense.

    Our installations, as described in the example for our own house, don't cost more than £6000, I was trying to extricate myself from 'advertising' on the thread after being told that it wasn't allowed :o:D. My own house's installation would probably cost around £4000-£4500, though that cost included a new hot water cylinder as part of that.

    And for solar thermal, when currently doing site surveys we tell our customers it is an ethical choice and don't try to persuade people that it is for financial investment reasons only. Saying that, you do save money on your hot water bills and the system lifetimes for solar thermal are 25+ years. The exception on 'ethical' only reasons is for householders with their own swimming pool (a small group of people, I know), where the heating costs of the pool make solar thermal a very worthwhile financial investment.

    Going forward the payback period will change as the Renewable Heat Incentive (the FIT tariff for thermal) comes in next year and will provide an income. Previously, before the FIT was introduced for PV, the payback period for PV was longer than that of thermal. The FIT has now made PV a much more attractive option and reduces the payback period considerably. This will hopefully mean more PV systems will be purchased, generating a larger market and therefore hopefully reducing the material and component costs, driving down installation prices and perpetuating the entire industry. When the RHI comes in for thermal a similar model should apply.

    An additional point to all of this is the concept of energy security. With the possibility of brown-outs in the future and the UK's heavy reliability on imported energy (e.g. gas from Russia), and the diminishing supplies of fossil fuels, plus the looming issue of power stations reaching their 'sell-by' dates, domestic renewable energy will help put a dent in the energy deficit that may well be occurring in the not too distant future.

    So to answer your question, no I won't try to persuade you how sound a solar thermal investment is, I don't do hard sell :p:) but I will say that it will, fingers crossed, become more financially viable in the future. Until then I'm grateful for the people who can afford to make the ethical choice, because the more customers there are the cheaper the installations will become, making the technology more affordable for the folks that want to make an ethical choice for good financial reasons also. That is the point of the FITs - to drive down the cost of the technology and therefore installation costs, to make it more accessible to Joe Public, which in turn drives down costs further.
    Saving money and energy seem to be the only things on my mind these days! :p
    ...installing solar energy!
Sign In or Register to comment.

Quick links

Essential Money | Who & Where are you? | Work & Benefits | Household and travel | Shopping & Freebies | About MSE | The MoneySavers Arms | Covid-19 & Coronavirus Support