One Man's Case for Residential Solar


After crunching some numbers, running some tests and making some (fairly safe) assumptions, user SanDiegoDave100 over at Motley Fool is able to make a pretty good case for using a solar power system to provide electricity for his home and an all-electric car like the forthcoming Tesla Roadster or the company's more affordable second and third models. How does he figure? Dave figured his total energy bill for the month (600 kilowatt-hours [kWh] of electricity for his house + 60 gallons of gasoline for his car) to be $280 or so; Tesla estimates it'd take 375 kWh to make their car go 1,500 miles (Dave's monthly driving estimate), so he needs about 975 kWh per month. Based on his zipcode (in San Diego, CA), an 8 kilowatt system would provide about 950 kWh per month over the span of each year; after rebates, such a system would cost $37,800. He figures a home equity loan for $37,000 at 6.5% would cost $239/month, about $40 less than his current energy usage, without any carbon emissions or oil consumption. Sure, it isn't perfect and certainly wouldn't work for everyone, but it's encouraging to see that solar is becoming more and more viable for small-scale, residential projects. ::Motley Fool via ::AutoblogGreen


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