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End Of Solar Subsidies


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#41 SteamyTea

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 02:47 PM

I am not sure how an individual will get on dealing with their local DNO regarding grid connection. One thing that the MCS did was make this simple.
Quite a bit of paperwork has to be sent off to them (not hard).

I suggested when the FITs started that people that already had PV should flog their old modules and replace them with ones from the list and get it MCS signed off.
Trouble was there was no local market for modules below 50 kW installations at the time. The other problem was that some existing system had already benefited from some grants.

Quite simply, you decide if the technology is worth while and anyone that bases their business on a government backed scheme really is living in cloud cuckoo land.

#42 lifemoveon

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 09:34 PM

View PostProDave, on 01 September 2015 - 09:42 AM, said:

So the new UK model will be:

Buy up all the nearly new, now unwanted, PV panels from Spain, very cheap, and install them as a non subsidised non FIT system in the UK.

the cheap price of nearly new but second hand panels will make it viable?

Hey!!! That was my idea!! :P

I'm seriously considering this for my new build. Any Spanish speaking folks here willing to go over to buy up some units? I'm starting to really think this could be a new venture - sunnyebuild.co.uk

Cheers.

#43 NSS

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 10:58 PM

Have been reading this and the related threads with interest and have to admit to still having a degree of confusion. To put things in context, last week I ordered 14 x 285w panels, optimisers and inverter (as I have access to these items at attractive prices). I had also agreed a price with an MCS approved installer (though not yet ordered) for the installation of said panels in a GSE in-roof mounting kit and to connect.

Whilst, in theory at least, it would be possible to physically mount ready for connection by late October/early November, I understand that you can't apply for the FIT payments until you're connected to the grid (and have an MPAN number), and you can't connect to the grid until you have a certificate of completion for the build. Can anyone confirm or contradict this, please?

#44 declan52

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 06:46 AM

As soon as your electric company fit your Meter you will have your mpan number. I got mine fitted as soon as 2nd fix electrics where done. Might get you in a couple of weeks earlier which might be all the difference.

#45 Fallingditch

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 06:49 AM

View PostProDave, on 01 September 2015 - 10:09 AM, said:

There's a guy selling NEW 4KW pv systems on ebay with everything except the roof mounting brackets
At the risk of going slightly OT, that eBayer has highlighted the fact that he has two different options - one for a grid-connected setup and the other for off-grid. If the direction of this thread has become "planning for a solar implementation without FITS subsidies" - then can somebody explain if the revenue offered to microgenerators is minimal (one or two pence per kwH) and the costs of connecting to the grid substantial, then why bother connecting at all? (as ProDave has suggested)

A Worked Example
Its a sunny day. The PV array is producing energy. It happens to coincide with the day that the Electricity Board have planned to dig up the road and disconnected me from the grid for a period of 12 hours (or more). What happens to all that energy I am generating?

#46 ProDave

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 07:30 AM

To Nss, you can get a grid connection and MPAN even before you have a building. My site has had power for over a year now. but if you are hoping to get that before the end of the year you may be out of luck, it took me a few months to fight through the bureaucracy to get the services installed.

To Declan:

That ebayer's 2 systems, the off grid one uses batteries to store your power (note batteries not included in his price). With an off grid system you have to store a LOT of power for use in the evenings.

The far simpler system is the grid tied system where you import or export power to the grid depending on usage and generation. That model works in a FIT system where you are paid for what you generate, and pay for what you import.

That model has a major problem if there's no payment. You don't want to be exporting and giving away your excess power for free. you want to find some way to use it instead of benefit to you that will reduce your usage bill.

The obvious thing is use all high power appliances in the daytime (if you are out at work, set them on a timer). next is a dump controller to put excess power into a hot water tank. Lastly is battery storage, but since you are not trying to store a whole days production you won't need anything like as much battery capacity as an off grid system.

This will probably also change the design of my heating and hot water system that are based on an ASHP. It will probably mean the heating buffer tank and hot water tank are larger, to ensure I never have to run the ASHP over night and it only ever runs in the daytime when it can be using (at least partly) self generated power.

Regarding a power cut. A grid tie system will just shut down so you won't get any power from it.

Edited by ProDave, 02 September 2015 - 07:33 AM.


#47 declan52

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 07:46 AM

NIE wouldn't give me mine till they had the cable connected up and the Meter in. The rules don't really apply to them here as they own all the network so just make it up as they go.

#48 notnickclegg

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 07:56 AM

View PostNSS, on 01 September 2015 - 10:58 PM, said:

Whilst, in theory at least, it would be possible to physically mount ready for connection by late October/early November, I understand that you can't apply for the FIT payments until you're connected to the grid (and have an MPAN number), and you can't connect to the grid until you have a certificate of completion for the build. Can anyone confirm or contradict this, please?

As I understand it, you can connect your house to the grid as soon as you have at least one installed and tested circuit. In our case, we had our electrician wire up a handful of sockets in our plant room. SSE moved our external meter into the plant room at that point.

Our solar panels are set up and producing as well (over 1MWh so far), despite us being at least a couple of months from completion. Need to get our SAP calcs done so we can apply for the tariff.

Jack

#49 NSS

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 07:58 AM

Thanks Dave/Jack

A glimmer of hope!

#50 CC45

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 08:46 AM

Hi NSS,

I looked into getting panels up when our garage was completed but were told we needed completion certificate before FIT could be claimed.

CC

#51 notnickclegg

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 08:57 AM

I think you need an EPC rather than a completion certificate. I need to look into the details of that this week and will report back what I find (although I think Jeremy might be the guy to talk to, given that he's been through this process already).

Jack

#52 djh99

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 09:18 AM

Jack is right, it's the EPC that you need in order to get FIT at the full rate. The completion certificate is entirely separate. The EPC is supposed to be the 'final' one for the house, rather than a preliminary one, so in my case it was our final airtightness test that gated when I could apply for the FIT, because I needed its result to get the EPC completed.

I built our garage first and got our connection and meter installed to it several months before we started building the house, so that's not a problem. In our case the electricity connection was done pretty quickly so I suppose it depends on where you live.

#53 Leaway

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 09:19 AM

If you have a MPAN / electric supply / Meter on site would it be possible to install the panels on a temporary ground frame (installed by the appropriate installer) to beat the timescales and get the FiT? Not starting my timber frame until Oct / Nov at the earliest so time against me.

If floor space available (plenty of land) then ground frame an option.

#54 DavidWright

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 09:22 AM

View PostFallingditch, on 02 September 2015 - 06:49 AM, said:

A Worked Example
Its a sunny day. The PV array is producing energy. It happens to coincide with the day that the Electricity Board have planned to dig up the road and disconnected me from the grid for a period of 12 hours (or more). What happens to all that energy I am generating?
If you have a 'normal' grid connected system then by design & for safety reasons (i.e. to prevent electricity being pushed out to a grid that the people fixing the line expect to be dead...) it will shutdown as soon as the grid fails, so in the above scenario your panels will simply sit there soaking up the sunshine but not producing any useful electricity.

Edit: To corrected a typo & add that I now see ProDave answered too, but the above is a bit more comprehensive, so I'll let it stand...

Edited by DavidWright, 02 September 2015 - 09:27 AM.


#55 djh99

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 10:24 AM

View PostLeaway, on 02 September 2015 - 09:19 AM, said:

If you have a MPAN / electric supply / Meter on site would it be possible to install the panels on a temporary ground frame (installed by the appropriate installer) to beat the timescales and get the FiT?
That would be a stand-alone system and the FIT rate would be much less than for a roof-mounted system, (but more than it might be next year!). I'm not sure but I don't think you could then convert it to a roof-mounted system and still retain the FIT. I think if you move and reinstall it, it becomes a second-hand system, which is not eligible for the FIT.

#56 dellboy13

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 10:31 AM

I could be wrong but I dont think you can get on the FIT until you have a EPC of D or lower. I have been told that you can not get a EPC until the you are water and air tight, insulation and boiler in, etc etc I have asked!

#57 DavidWright

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 11:03 AM

View Postdjh99, on 02 September 2015 - 10:24 AM, said:

That would be a stand-alone system and the FIT rate would be much less than for a roof-mounted system
Isn't the issue one of stand-alone v building connected rather than stand-alone v roof mount.
There are plenty of examples of building connected systems that are ground mounted.

This useful page about what "stand-alone" means in this context

http://www.yougen.co...eed-in tariffs/

quotes "Standalone means not attached to a building and not wired to provide electricity to an occupied building".

The awkward question here is probably the business of can an "early" install count as building connected if there isn't (in the eyes of officialdom, at least) a "building" as such? Hence the EPC requirement?

Edited by DavidWright, 02 September 2015 - 11:07 AM.


#58 djh99

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 12:47 PM

View PostDavidWright, on 02 September 2015 - 11:03 AM, said:

Isn't the issue one of stand-alone v building connected rather than stand-alone v roof mount.
You're quite right, sorry for my loose reply.

Quote

can an "early" install count as building connected if there isn't (in the eyes of officialdom, at least) a "building" as such? Hence the EPC requirement?
Exactly, you need an EPC to claim the higher FIT rate, and you need a pretty much complete building to get an EPC.

#59 ProDave

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 12:56 PM

Just to clarify.

If a solar Pv system "serves a building" then that building will need an EPC of D or better to get the full rate. Many of us are stuck because until the house is finished, we can't get an EPC.

In theory is the solar pv serves a building that is "not relevant" under the FIT legislation you should be able to get an exemption certificate from an energy surveyor so say so. well I have tried many energy assessors and failed to find one that will give me such an exemption letter. You explain to them what you want, ask them to give me a price for writing the required exemption letter and that's the last you hear from them and they stop answering emails from you.

So as I have explained before you could if you are desperate still claim the FIT before the end of the year but without an EPC you will get a much lower rate as already detailed.

It has nothing to do with whether the panels are on a roof, in a roof or on the ground. It's what building they are electrically connected to that matters.

#60 NSS

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 01:26 PM

Have spoken to my intended installers and they say that it should be possible to get the 'lower rate' FIT of 5.94p if we can connect to grid before January (even without an EPC), and 5.94p is considerably better than 1.67p!

Edited by NSS, 02 September 2015 - 01:27 PM.