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webwat

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#277032 22-Sep-2020 19:00
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Have been looking at Solar city due to having no up front costs. Apparently they get some subsidy so can charge $85+GST per month for their service over 20 years (extendable to 30) which is effectively a rental of solar panels, 6.4kWh battery/charger/inverter system manufactured by Link Data using Panasonic batteries that runs the fridge etc during a power cut. Battery charger and inverter both handle up to 3kW throughput so you want to turn off any hungry appliances during a power cut. They guarantee the system will continue to produce 80% of original capacity over its life and any replacement parts are their cost. Battery replacement expected after 10 years. Not sure what the $75 "eco bonus" and $45 "grid energy credit" are, but the fees are $200/month before those subsidies. Wouldn't be surprised if the contract gave them an out in case government cancels a subsidy.

 

The odd thing that has me questioning it is that they are pushing the whole power savings of their favoured power retailer, Ecotricity, on a power price guarantee of 8c/kWh "cost of energy" (plus the various lines charges) and they also buy back at 8c. I would have thought the generation costs would come down over time if generators can build capacity to keep up with demand, especially if large scale solar generation becomes cheaper over time. I understand that generators have sometimes tried to keep prices up but that shouldn't be a problem if I am generating at least some solar output at peak times. Apparently its "feasible" to switch power providers if you don't mind losing the price guarantee, but then you would have to find a retailer with a price for power-to-grid buy back.

 

Anyone know of a more transparent deal out there? The business case seems to be predicated on inflation pushing up average retail supply rates.

 

Just found the Panasonic battery is Lithium NCA cells (nickel cobalt aluminium), how safe are they? Are they as safe as LiFePO4 battery cells?





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richms
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  #2572341 22-Sep-2020 19:51
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I wont go with them for that deal because it is basically them seeing you as the source of the return on their investment. Better to get the gear yourself and have all the returns from it. Seems a very low risk investment and westpac and some other banks have no interest deals on solar and insulation stuff if you have a mortgage with them.

 

https://www.westpac.co.nz/home-loans/warm-up/

 

5 years of no interest on the solar gear may certainly change the prospects. Even with the rates being so low at the moment zero is less than almost zero.





Richard rich.ms

PJ48
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  #2572381 22-Sep-2020 20:50
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They do also offer a deal where you pay up front for a considerable discount over the 20 year cost, but it is still a lease arrangement, so they will maintain and replace as needed over the 20 years.


 
 
 
 


ren1316
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  #2572388 22-Sep-2020 21:05
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@webwat, There are a lot of negative comments with solar zero. I do not know if any of them have any personal experience.

 

I myself find the deal to be favorable. The saving with the power you paid more than offset the cost of the monthly cost of joining the system. I am paying 8c per unit for power (plus line cost etc bringing the unit price to 14cent). The grid credit $ is what Solar Zero will credit your account if the power provider charge you more than 8c per unit.

 

With Battery, the charging will be during daylight and off peak for use during peak hours, thus lowering the power bill further.

 

If you want to know more or have further questions, feel free to PM.

 

Jon.


webwat

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  #2572395 22-Sep-2020 21:25
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Sorry didn't realise you guys already replied, did a few edits... Looks like the controller/battery is the Australian Link Data system. Can't find it on the Australian list of safety approved battery systems.





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webwat

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  #2572411 22-Sep-2020 21:36
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ren1316:

 

@webwat, There are a lot of negative comments with solar zero. I do not know if any of them have any personal experience.

 

I myself find the deal to be favorable. The saving with the power you paid more than offset the cost of the monthly cost of joining the system. I am paying 8c per unit for power (plus line cost etc bringing the unit price to 14cent). The grid credit $ is what Solar Zero will credit your account if the power provider charge you more than 8c per unit.

 

With Battery, the charging will be during daylight and off peak for use during peak hours, thus lowering the power bill further.

 

If you want to know more or have further questions, feel free to PM.

 

Jon.

 

 

They said they also charge the battery overnight enough to power morning usage until the solar starts generating, so likely to average 50%. It won't discharge below 20% unless there's a power cut.

 

The grid credit is apparently a fixed monthly credit that brings the monthly fee down to $85, don't know where it comes from. They did mention Transpower is trying to spread power loads without saying anything about the subsidies.

 

I would like to see an contractual option to buy the system outright if the house is sold or we decide we no longer like paying the rental for whatever reason, have to ask them about that.





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ren1316
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  #2572415 22-Sep-2020 21:39
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Yes, you can pay off the remaining period at any time. 

 

 

 

 


webwat

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  #2572970 23-Sep-2020 16:31
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I'm pretty sure the battery/inverter system is the one made by Link Data in china, although they appear kind of related anyway.

 

If they don't discount the buyout option when you exit the rental agreement early then I don't think it will fly...





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Quinny
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  #2573319 24-Sep-2020 10:40
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I rejected this as it can affect the sale price of your home. You have to have a buyer willing to continue the payments or you have to pay it out. Yes instead cost upfront but with the Westpac 10k (zero interest 5 years) and rest at 2.5%) I have not looked back. I did go over the top with 6.6 system, 5k inverter and a Powerwall but 2 months in I am in love. High usage home mostly off grid all the time and obsessed with the tesla app. Quotable NZ are coming out but RV looks like will increase by system value as well. I designed my system around output in 10 years time and went top of the line so yeah was not cheap but I am very happy. 


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