Solar pannels and storage heaters

I was wondering if i got a couple of storage heaters, if i had solar pannels fitted (for free or cheap) and had them heating up during the day when the electric is free to give out heat at night.

Would this work or am i being optimistic?

Thanks
Is a Bipolar bear :p
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Replies

  • Depends how many watts are needed to 'charge' them.

    Don't forget that when you will need them most - i.e. winter - the sun will be at its weakest.

    Oh, and please have a good think (and read the arguments on this website against) about the free panel schemes.
  • I will look into storage heaters more, we have a log burner so if it gets really cold i would use this instead of using electric boiler.

    I will go find that thread against solar panels, i couldnt afford to have them without one of these schemes and we would be looking to have 6Kwh fitted.
    Is a Bipolar bear :p
  • dane-katie wrote: »
    I will look into storage heaters more, we have a log burner so if it gets really cold i would use this instead of using electric boiler.

    I will go find that thread against solar panels, i couldnt afford to have them without one of these schemes and we would be looking to have 6Kwh fitted.

    Unfortunately, you won't get 6kw/p fitted for free due to the FIT scheme which reduces the amounts paid after 4kw/p.

    Having solar panels myself, I really can't see the point of the 'free schemes' from the point of view of the consumer as, on a dull day, the panels only provide nominal power and on a sunny day it is nigh on impossible to actually consume the power yourself. Compared to the disadvantages, it makes it extremely unattractive to me.
  • edited 11 February 2011 at 7:14PM
    HappyMJHappyMJ Forumite
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    edited 11 February 2011 at 7:14PM
    dane-katie wrote: »
    I was wondering if i got a couple of storage heaters, if i had solar pannels fitted (for free or cheap) and had them heating up during the day when the electric is free to give out heat at night.

    Would this work or am i being optimistic?

    Thanks
    Why would you want heat at night? Night rate electricity is very cheap anyway at about 4p per kw. So just put the cheapo electric convector heater on then.

    Another thing the solar panels make free electricity mostly in the summer and you don't want the heating on in the summer.
    dane-katie wrote: »
    I will look into storage heaters more, we have a log burner so if it gets really cold i would use this instead of using electric boiler.

    I will go find that thread against solar panels, i couldnt afford to have them without one of these schemes and we would be looking to have 6Kwh fitted.
    6kw...that's a lot of electric to be using on a warm summers day. I doubt any house would be able to use that. What are your bills like now?

    The biggest system you'll get for free is 3kw. My base usage without heating is about 150W so I'd only use about 5% of the electric generated. Do you have an energy monitor to figure out your base usage?
    :footie:
    :p Regular savers earn 6% interest (HSBC, First Direct, M&S) :p Loans cost 2.9% per year (Nationwide) = FREE money. :p
  • edited 11 February 2011 at 8:19PM
    zeupaterzeupater Forumite
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    edited 11 February 2011 at 8:19PM
    dane-katie wrote: »
    I was wondering if i got a couple of storage heaters, if i had solar pannels fitted (for free or cheap) and had them heating up during the day when the electric is free to give out heat at night.

    Would this work or am i being optimistic?

    Thanks
    Hi

    Very, very, very optimistic ....

    The hardest part of what you would need to do is to stop the storage heater from utilising imported electricity at daytime (expensive) rates when there is not enough sun available to charge the heater .....

    Let's assume that this isn't a problem, and to ensure that it isn't let's look at a simple 'off grid' system, without batteries to see how large an array you would need in order to charge 'a couple' of heaters ...

    Firstly, let's assume that a full charge of a storage heater requires about 18kWh of electricity to be delivered over a standard 7 hours, so 2 heaters would require 36kWh.

    In December, you will be very lucky to generate an average of 0.7kWh/kWp per day, with the majority of this being within the two hours each side of solar noon, so 0.175kW average generation per hour per kWp installed.

    We now have a situation where storage heaters which are designed to fully charge over 7 hours cannot reach full charge because the solar array is only delivering power for 4 hours/day, so they would take a couple of days to fully charge ... but let's forget that and carry on ....

    Against the 0.175kW/kWp of average production we have a 36kWh requirement over the four hours (if they could fully charge in four hours), which is 9kW ... this would result in a system requirement of around 51.5kWp (9000/175) which would cover around 400sqm, weigh over 5 tonnes and cost well in excess of £150k ......

    It's simplistic I know, but the basics are correct without the complexity of describing the issues with trying to achieve this with a grid tied system. I therefore hope this helps to demonstrate that attempting to do this to provide Winter heat (when it's required) is a non-starter.

    HTH
    Z
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    B)
  • Unfortunately, you won't get 6kw/p fitted for free due to the FIT scheme which reduces the amounts paid after 4kw/p.

    Having solar panels myself, I really can't see the point of the 'free schemes' from the point of view of the consumer as, on a dull day, the panels only provide nominal power and on a sunny day it is nigh on impossible to actually consume the power yourself. Compared to the disadvantages, it makes it extremely unattractive to me.

    I would be paying £500 for the system and they are willing (space permitted) to fit a 6Kwh, which we have the space for as we have a huge roof.
    Is a Bipolar bear :p
  • HappyMJ wrote: »
    Why would you want heat at night? Night rate electricity is very cheap anyway at about 4p per kw. So just put the cheapo electric convector heater on then.

    Another thing the solar panels make free electricity mostly in the summer and you don't want the heating on in the summer.


    6kw...that's a lot of electric to be using on a warm summers day. I doubt any house would be able to use that. What are your bills like now?

    The biggest system you'll get for free is 3kw. My base usage without heating is about 150W so I'd only use about 5% of the electric generated. Do you have an energy monitor to figure out your base usage?

    Its cold all year round where i live, yes it might only be Sheffield but i live next to an open field and its horrible in summer always cold due to the wind :(

    I cant find a energy monitor that will work with my electric they all seem to be for single phase and mine is 3 phase, during summer time the use of our barns is usually when it is highest so a lot of electric is used (i live on a non working farm)

    I see where everyone is coming from, i understand its not as simple as i would like :p
    Is a Bipolar bear :p
  • HappyMJHappyMJ Forumite
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    The solar panels are single phase.
    :footie:
    :p Regular savers earn 6% interest (HSBC, First Direct, M&S) :p Loans cost 2.9% per year (Nationwide) = FREE money. :p
  • dane-katie wrote: »
    I cant find a energy monitor that will work with my electric they all seem to be for single phase and mine is 3 phase
    http://shop.diykyoto.com/

    I think all there are 3 phase compatible and one model is specifically for solar with appropriate software. Most other monitors cannot tell the difference between electricity used and electricity exported.
    Hi, we’ve had to remove your signature. If you’re not sure why please read the forum rules or email the forum team if you’re still unsure - MSE ForumTeam
  • HappyMJ wrote: »
    The solar panels are single phase.

    Not all of them are, but that can be sorted out we only use 2 of the 3 phases in our house at the moment, its a simple job getting it changed well is for me i just watch OH do it haha
    Is a Bipolar bear :p
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