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DIY Design Review

jakepusateri

100K Ohm Resistor
Joined
Apr 21, 2023
Messages
28
Location
Indiana
Hi, after getting crazy quotes ($4/W without battery) for a solar system I decided to do it myself. Well, at least the design. I'm hiring an electrician to do the wiring and put the panels up due to a wife ban from roof work, but I'm buying everything, submitting permits, etc. I'm looking for an overall review before it gets too late to change things.

Basics
Location - Indiana, Roof Mount
Usage - ~18000 kWh/yr (AC, large house, EV, etc)
Production Estimate - 14.5 kW -> 19728 kWh/yr
Goal - Bill Reduction and some emergency backup (no net metering. 5c/kWh to grid, 15c/kWh from)

Materials
Inverter - EG4-18kPV
- The inverter is capable of passing through 200A, so I will route utility feed to it, then to the main panel. For the shutoff switch I need anyway, I'll use something like this (https://www.homedepot.com/p/Siemens...le-Safety-Switch-DTGNF224NR/205874580#overlay). That will be a way to select grid to main panel directly or grid to inverter then to main so I won't lose power if the inverter fails in a bad way.

Battery - EG4 Lifepower batteries x 6 in their rack

Panels - Bluesun 415W BSM415M10-54HPH x 35
I messaged Bluesun on alibaba directly and got what seems like a great price - $6304 for a pallet of 36, which is like 42c/W. They have a warehouse in Long Beach, so hopefully shipping isn't too bad, but my backup is the Solarever 410W panels. Since I need 35 and pallets are 31 it's a little awkward. If I do that should I still order an extra in case one breaks?

Rails - Mini Rails from Signature Solar
- In a 7x5 landscape layout. (https://signaturesolar.com/content/documents/RESCOM/1557001-manual.pdf). This seems way cheaper than using something like IronRidge ($1k vs $4k). The only downside I can see is with my rafters 24" OC and the panels 68" wide, their will be 4" gaps between each column. I can't imagine I'll care or even notice from the ground.

Cost Estimates
Inverter/Battery Combo - $14,500
Panels - $7000
Racking- $1000
Permitting - $500
Labor and BOS - (Not sure what's fair here, but using project solar's schedule https://projectsolar.com/pages/become-a-project-solar-installer 50c/W + 2k for battery)
$9k

Total - $32k pre tax credit

Seems like a lot better deal than $48k for 13kW no battery, yeah?
 
I prefer to get PV panels locally. There is a GreenTech Renewables location in Indianapolis. I used the office in Denver to get my panels and it worked great. Be sure you contact the local office, not the national number.
 
That's a fair point, looks like 35 URECO FBM400MFG-BB's would be $8300 from greentech. No shipping, no risk of damage, but quite a bit more expensive.
 
That's a fair point, looks like 35 URECO FBM400MFG-BB's would be $8300 from greentech. No shipping, no risk of damage, but quite a bit more expensive.

Dealing with an established local vendor is going to be a heck of a lot easier than some Alibaba entity should you need warranty assistance.
 
I know this thread is a little old, but to HRTKD's point, establish a relationship with someone local. It may save you in the long run, and for panels you bypass things like shipping damage claims and the like. It's never a problem unless its a problem.
 

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