CO2 levels in atmosphere reaching 400ppm for first time in 3 million years

The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has reached 399.72 parts per million (ppm) and is likely to pass the symbolically important 400ppm level for the first time.

Readings at the US government's Earth Systems Research laboratory in Hawaii


ENTER
Renewable Energy

Systems & Componets

COMPLETE SYSTEMS

SOLAR PANELS

INVERTERS 

TRACKERS & MOUNTING SYSTEMS

BATTERIES

CABLES
& WIRING

ELECTRICAL ENCLOSURES & SAFTEY

CHARGE
CONTROLERS

METERS, COMM.S & SITE ANALYSIS

DC TO DC VOLTAGE CONVERTER INVERTER POWER PANELS
SOLAR WATER PUMPS FAQ s
MICRO-FIT & FIT QUESTIONS

Need Help Selecting Components?

Contact Us


PRODUCTS

Batteries
Batteries: Flooded Lead Acid
Batteries: Sealed Agm
Batteries: Sealed Gel Cell
Desulfators
Enclosures
Ventilators/Battery Fans
Watering Caps

Books, Classes & Educational Videos

Classes
Educational Videos
General Renewable
Micro Hydropower
Solar Electric and Passive Solar
Solar Hot Water Systems
Wind Energy

Cables & Wiring

Battery Interconnects
Battery To Inverter
Tools
Wire By The Foot
Wiring For Solar Panels

Charge Controllers

Solar Charge Controllers
Solar Lighting Controllers
AC Charge Controllers
Constant Voltage Regulator
Diversion Load Controllers
Temperature Sensors

Composting

BigBelly Compactor
Compost Toilets
Garden Composters

DC Voltage Converters

Enclosures, Electrical and Safety

Electrical Enclosures
Lightning Protection
Miscellaneous Electrical Parts
NEC Compliant Safety Labels
Outback Flexware Components
Overcurrent Devices (Fuses & Breakers)
Switch Gear Disconnects

How To Section
Inverters
Export Inverters (230V 50Hz)
Inverter Accessories
Marine Inverters
Mobile / RV Inverters
Off-Grid: (No Utility-Needs Batteries)
On-Grid & Off-Grid Capable Inverters
On-Grid: (Grid Intertie-No Batteries)

Kits and Package Deals

Grid-Tied Systems
Grid-Tied with Battery Backup
Off-Grid Cabin Systems
Off-Grid Residential Systems
Other Packages and Special Deals
RV Solar Packages

Meters, Communications
& Site Analysis

Data Communications
Meters & Battery Monitors
Shunts
Solar Site Analysis Tools
System Monitors
Wind Data Instruments

Portable Power

Solar Panel Mounts & Trackers

Active Trackers
Ground Mounts
Passive Trackers
Roof Mounts
RV & Specialty
Side Of Pole
Top Of Pole

Solar Panels

1 to 50 Watt Solar Panels
51 to 99 Watt Solar Panels
100 to 149 Watts Solar Panels
150 Watts & Up Solar Panels
Flexible / Rollable Solar Panels
Foldable Solar Panels
Solar Panels by the Pallet
BIPV - Building Intergrated Photovoltaics
Solar Electricity Education

Wind Turbines

VAWT Wind Turbines (Electric)
HAWT Wind Turbines (Electric)
Wind Turbine Towers
Wind Data Instruments
Wind Power Education

Renewable Energy System Design Tools
Solar/ Wind Costs & Performance Calculators
Grid Connected SolarRAPS - remote area power supplyGrid Connected SolarGrid Connected Solar
“Payback on solar isn’t the most important thing…it is the only thing the vast majority of potential solar homeowners care about.”  


Estimate Your Available Roof Space
New roof or area mapping tool available - Click here to follow this link


Need Help? – click links below

 - System Power Yeilds Guide 1 kW - 1.5 kW  - 2 kW  - 2.5 kW  - 3 kW  - 3.5 kW - 4 kW - 4.5 kW - 5 kW

 - Six Easy Steps To Estimate Cost of a Solar Power System

 - Determining Your Electricity Consumption

 - Solar Insolation Map - Caribbean, Mexico & Central America
  - Wind Resource Map-World

 - Historical weather and climate data

 - Calculators, Do It Yourself Design Forms & Quote Applications

Renewable Energy System Design Tools

Step 1: To optimise the performance of your system, we need to know the what the weather is like in the area where the system will be installed. Please complete the 4 steps below to begin designing your renewable energy system. - Click this Link - Historical weather and climate data - Solar Insolation Map - Caribbean, Mexico & Central America - Wind Resource Map-World

Determine your historical weather and climate data, at you local weather staion, or  contact us  for a detailed search. Please provide, country followed by a postcode, town or suburb name.


Step 2:
At this stage weather data from the nearest weather station should be obtained.

PLEASE NOTE: 
Solar Irradiation & Wind Speed
Air and Ground Temperature
Humidity and Air Pressure

Step 3: Once you have chosen your nearest (or most appropriate) weather station, you can proceed to design your own wind or solar power system. Choose the type of renewable energy system you wish to design.
PLEASE NOTE: If your data is not found appearing on our Historical weather and climate datapage, and would like a detailed personal search, you may contact us to select a weather station close to your chosen location

Step 4: Use the tools below to estimate your complete costs.
Calculators & Do It Yourself Design Forms & Quote Applications - Thank you in advance, for taking the time to fill in our quotation forms, it will help to process your quote in an efficient and personalised manner.

Now that you have completed this form please attach any available photographs, site plans, etc you feel will help us process your quotation. Where applicable please mark your proposed position of the turbine(s) and solar system(s).
Please save and return the completed form and other documentation either by email or post. Email:
info@livenergysolutions.com
If the relevant information has been provided we should be able to provide a quotation within one week of receipt of the completed form. We may need to contact you to confirm any details you have been unable to provide and perhaps arrange a site visit, in which case it could take a little longer. We look forward to working with you in the future.

GreenerEnergy.ca took a look at how easy it is for us consumers to actually estimate the cost of installation/installing solar during a home remodel - using a web-based solar calculator.  

Below are we have listed a number of sources for solar installation calculators, and we have compiled the most comprehensive list of these calculators available on the web.
Before you begin, make sure you have a copy of your utility bill handy because you will need to input either your annual electric costs and/or your monthly electric usage in Kwh into the solar calculator!

Our calculators make it easy for you to size a solar electric system to meet your needs. Stay tuned for more of our easy to use calculators for other types of renewable energy systems design tools.
Note: Some Solar Estimators (solar calculators) only cover the United States and its Territories. They do not yet cover solar energy calculations for Canada and its Provinces or make a solar energy estimate for other Non-U.S. areas.

Do It Yourself Design Forms & Quote Applications

Home Solar Power Online Order / Quote Form

RESIDENTIAL Quote Request – Wind/ Solar Electric System

Stand Alone Power System Quote Self Assessment Form

DC Cable Sizing Calculator

Solar Water Pumping Calculator

Solar Power Site Assessment Form

COMMERCIAL Quote Request – Wind/ Solar Electric System

Stand Alone Power Systems (SAPS) -Determining your energy consumption

Solar Water Pumping A Practical Introduction

Grid Connected Solar

RAPS - remote area power supply

Grid Connected Solar

Grid Connected Solar

Calculate Your Energy Consumption & Costs
The calculator uses a residential rate of 11.796 cents/kilowatt hour. Applicable taxes have been pre-calculated and will automatically populate on the bottom portion of the calculator (HST is 13%). These calculations do not include monthly charges.

Are you connected to the electricity grid?
Use our grid connected system calculator to calculate the cost of a system for your home, electricity savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions

Do you need electricity in places where it is not available?
Try our Stand Alone Power Systems (SAPS) calculator to determine your remote power requirements. Suitable for remote houses, marine, campers, campervans, caravans, 4 x 4 and off-road vehicles, etc.

Online DC cable sizing tool, use this tool to determine thickness of cable required for your system. The right sized cable will give you the best efficiency!

Solar pumping calculator - Use this tool to determine what kind of solar pump you'll need, how much solar power is required, and how much water will be delivered.

Calculators


Find Solar
The “My Solar Estimator” solar calculator tool starts out simple with entry of a zip code and selection of your utility provider and remains easy to use from there on out.  We like the navigation of this solar calculator and believe this solar calculator was designed for consumers like the US community.  This solar calculator is used by a number of different websites, and is referred to quite often.

FirstLook Wind and Solar Datasets through an API

Wind And Solar Performance Assesment

3TIER's FirstLook Prospecting tool is a powerful web-based application that provides basic wind resource data for any location worldwide and basic solar resource data for any location in the Western Hemisphere. It has become the "go-to" sales tool for residential and commercial-scale renewable energy installers and manufactures, helping them educate customers on the value of their on-site renewable resources, inform hardware and installation decisions, and calculate returns-on-investment.


A Performance Calculator For Grid-Connected PV Systems - PV WattsCalculates electrical energy produced by a grid-connected photovoltaic system.  Created by researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to enable experts to obtain performance estimates for grid-connected PV systems with the US.  This solar calculator, while getting many referrals on the web, appears to be made by rocket scientists for rocket scientists.  It is very difficult to use for the average consumer, but there are instructions that can teach you the science behind the solar calculations. more info

SunPower Solar Calculator

This is a very complete and comprehensive solar calculator.  This calculator is almost identical o the Sharp and Kyocera calculators below.  It is built by Clean Power Research.  You definitely have to know your stuff to answer all the questions, and to get an answer.  The nice thing about this solar calculator is that it compares your costs to actually leasing a system through SunPower.   

sharp solar calculator

Sharp USA 
Estimate system cost, monthly savings, and payback using this solar calculator.  This is the same solar calculator as Kyocea, but implemented a bit nicer.  Still requires you to know the cost per Watt to get a good estimation.  

solar power kyocera

Kyocera Clean Power Estimator
Estimate the energy output, pollution prevention and cost of your grid-connected photovoltaic system using this solar calculator. 

Select the residential option, and input your Zip Code to get started.  Does incorporate tax benefits.  This calculator is used by a number of websites, and can be easily identified by the “cleanpower” text in a webpage URL.  We didn’t find this solar calculator particularily useful for the average consumer because it required you to put in what you think the size of your PV System should be (e.g. 4,000 Watts) and a cost per Watt (e.g. $8 per Watt dc). We question whether the average consumer trying to make a solar decision knows this?

Arizona (Phoenix) Residents 
SRP delivers a Solar CostCalc for Phoenix residents.  It estimates the cost of a system and cost savings of the system, but you have to estimate the size of the system.   So you might want to start with the My Solar Estimator, and come back after you’ve done some estimating.

solar calculator 10

Southern California Solar Calculator (Southern Cal Edison & San Diego Gas Electric) Heritage Solar offers a solar calculator that is easy to use and provides savings information for ”small”, “medium” and “large” installation scenarios. 

The Solar Programs Options Tool (SPOT)
Whether driven by regulations, customer preferences, or corporate values, solar electricity is becoming an increasingly important renewable resource for electric utilities. The Solar Programs Options Tool (SPOT) is an online evaluation tool that recommends and prioritizes solar electricity options for electric utilities, including:-Residential & Commercial Incentives - Solar Generating Plants - Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) - Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) - Green Power Pricing Programs - Education, Demonstration, and Research

NOAA ESRL
Sunrise/Sunset Calculator

NOAA ESRL
Solar Position Calculator

Geothermal Cost Estimator

MORE HELPFUL TOOLS..........

The PVWatts Solar Calculator

The purpose of this tool is to allow you to calculate how much energy will be produced by photovoltaic solar panels in a geographical area. It takes into account the amount of sun in the area and average electric rates.

To start the PV Watts Calculator from National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), please click here:

The PV Watt Photovoltaic Solar System Performance Calculator

See Also:

Tilt and Angle Orientation of Solar Panels

Other Energy Calculators and Tools:

Clean Power Estimator -

Clean Power EstimatorTM is an economic evaluation software program the California Energy Commission is licensing for use from Clean Power Research. The program provides California residential and commercial electric customers a personalized estimate of the costs and benefits of investing in a photovoltaic (PV) solar or small wind electric generation system.

The program takes into consideration customer-specific information in order to provide the best estimate of a given system's costs and benefits. This information includes the estimated cost of the particular system under consideration, the customer's location, electric rate schedules, and other customer information.

List of Decision-Making Tools from the U.S. Department of Energy
http://www1.eere.energy.gov/solar/decision_tools.html

FindSolar.Com Solar Estimator - The Solar Estimator is meant only to give you an idea of price, savings and system size.
http://www.findsolar.com/

The CECPV Calculator is a detailed hourly calculation tool based on the 5-parameter model developed by Dr. Beckman's group at the University of Wisconsin, incorporating detailed inverter performance modeling and uses the weather data from the 16 climate zones in California

Here are some decision-making tools to aid you in the process of learning about and using energy-efficient and solar electric technologies and products. Your home's energy efficiency is very important; because energy efficiency reduces the costs of energy use, it should be taken into consideration as you decide on the best solar electric power system for your needs. In fact, we recommend making your house as energy efficient as possible before considering a photovoltaic or PV system, because then you might not need such a large system, especially for heating and cooling.

Consumer Software for Residential Energy Analysis
This list of computer software programs can help you analyze your home's energy use and the impact of energy-efficient design features.
Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy (DSIRE)
DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, and selected federal incentives that promote renewable energy.
Economics of Solar Pool Heaters
Here are some resources on installing a solar pool-heating system, including financing and incentives, solar resources, orientation of the pool and collector, and state and community codes.

Energy Savers: Tips on Saving Energy and Money at Home
This online guide can help you make your home more energy efficient.

Energy Star® Home Improvement Toolbox
These tools can help you save money and energy when remodeling, repairing, or improving your home. Energy Star® Products
Here's a list of appliances, electronics, and building products that meet Energy Star's rigorous energy efficiency requirements.

FindSolar.com Solar Estimator
Estimate the price, savings, and system size of solar energy systems to produce electricity, heat your water, or heat your spa or pool. From the American Solar Energy Society, the Solar Electric Power Association, Energy Matters LLC, and the U.S. Department of Energy

Home Energy Saver
To use this online do-it-yourself home energy audit tool, all you need is your zip code. Based on your zip code, the tool can tell you how you can make your home more energy efficient.

NASA's Surface Meteorology and Solar Energy Data
This is a renewable energy resource web site sponsored by NASA's Earth Science Enterprise Program that contains over 200 satellite-derived meteorological and solar energy parameters, monthly averaged from 10 years of data, and data tables for a particular location.
Renewable Resource Data Center (RReDC)
The RReDC provides information on several types of renewable energy resources in the United States, in the form of publications, data, and maps.

RETScreen Renewable Energy Project Analysis Software
This free software can be used worldwide to evaluate energy production, life-cycle costs, and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions for various types of renewable energy technologies.
Simply Insulate
The North American Insulation Manufacturers Association provides information on how to lower your energy usage by properly insulating your home. Included are calculators to determine your energy savings through home insulation, and ways to determine the recommended amount of insulation depending on the state you live in. The site also includes resources on state financial incentives for installing and purchasing insulation.

Six Easy Steps To Estimate Cost of a Solar Power System

Solar power energy systems are not inexpensive. That said it's important to compare them within context of other types of home improvement projects. Home buyers and realtors view a solar photovoltaic or solar hot water heating system as a significant value-added improvement – similar to adding a deck or remodeling your kitchen. Plus unlike a deck or kitchen remodel, you also gain one-up on your power bills with significant solar energy savings over the life of the system.

Solar power systems often get an additional financial boost as well: many jurisdictions and utilities across the USA offer attractive financial incentives to drive down the upfront capital costs associated with a solar power system.

Here are some foolproof ways to estimate the cost of a solar photovoltaic or solar thermal system and to figure out if a solar energy system makes sense for you. Let's start with a home photovoltaic (PV) system.

Step 1: Estimate your home's electricity needs

New Home Construction

If you are constructing a new home, then you'll need to estimate your demand based on the type of equipment you plan to install and your home's square footage. The pross call this "your load".

To figure out your anticipated load, create a table to record the watt use for each appliance. Each appliance – be it a water heater, electric light, computer, or refrigerator – should have a nameplate that lists its power rating in watts. Or you can get the information from the manufacturer's website.

Some labels list amperage and voltage only; to obtain watts multiply the two together (amperage x voltage = watts). In another column, record the number of hours each appliance is expected to operate. Then multiple the watts and hours together to estimate watt-hours used per day. Since it's hard to anticipate all electric loads (it may get tedious scouting out every toothbrush and mobile phone cell charger), you might want to add a multiplier of 1.5 to be safe.

To get started, it's good to have a sense of how much electricity you use. You'll have a better point for comparison if you find out how many kilowatt hours (kWh) you use per day, per month, per year. Your utility bill should include that information.

Of course, the utility bill will also display your costs and many utilities include a graph that displays how your monthly energy use/cost varies throughout the year. That helps you estimate where your highest energy use is and at what time of year.

Step 2: Anticipate the future

In 2005, average residential electricity rates across the USA ranged from about 6 to nearly 16 cents per kilowatt hour depending on where you lived. Average retail and commercial electricity rates have increased roughly 30% since 1999 and the upward trend will likely continue especially as costs for the coal and hydropower used to generate that electricity rise as well.

So think about your home electricity needs and present and future cost in relation to one another. Here's a quick chart comparing 2005 average electricity rates in several states around the country to estimated future rates 20 years from now (a conservative estimate for the lifespan of a PV system). For sake of comparison, we assume a home uses 1,100 kilowatt hours of electricity per month.

State

2005 Average Electricity Rate
(Cents/kWh)

2005 Yearly Cost

2025 Average Electricity Rate
(Cents/kWh)

2025 Yearly Cost

Arizona

8.9 cents

$1,170

28.4 cents

$3,751

California

12.5 cents

$1,652

40.1 cents

$5,296

Colorado

9.0 cents

$1,996

29.1 cents

$3,835

Massachusetts

13.4 cents

$1,769

43.0 cents

$5,673

Maryland

8.5 cents

$1,122

27.3 cents

$3,598

New Jersey

11.7 cents

$1,544

37.5 cents

$4,953

New York

15.7 cents

$2,072

50.4 cents

$6,646

Texas

10.9 cents

$1,439

35.0 cents

$4,614


Step 3: How much sun do you get?

The Florida Solar Energy Center has conducted a study to examine how a 2-kW photovoltaic system would perform if installed on a highly energy efficient home across the continental USA.

US Solar Hours Map

The study accounted for all factors that impact a PV system's performance such as the temperature effect on the photovoltaic cells, the amount of sun peak hours in various regions, and the efficiency of inverter to convert solar derived energy from DC to AC. The image to the right depicts the results.

As the image illustrates, solar photovoltaic systems work just about anywhere in the US. Even in the Northeast or in "rainy Seattle", a pv system can pencil out if designed and installed properly. In New York or New Jersey, a one kilowatt system should produce about 1,270 kilowatt hours of electricity per year, in Seattle, a one kilowatt system should produce about 1,200 kilowatt hours per year. In the Southwest, of course, those ratios will be much greater.

Verified Solar Installers in your area can help determine the best size for your solar photovoltaic system.

Peak Solar Maps
To view new photovoltaic potential and solar resource maps and data for Canada, go to Natural Resources Canada website [link] Annual Mean Daily Solar Radiation (Megajoules per square metre) Incident on a South-Facing Surface Tilted at an Angle Equal to the Latitude of the Location

 January

January

February

February

March

 March

April

April

May

May

June

June

July

July

August

August

September

September

October

October

November

November

December

December

Mean Solar Radiation
Annual

Understanding these figures:Solar irradiance is the intensity of solar radiation received on a surface at a given time. It is usually expressed in Watts per m2. Irradiance varies from zero at sunrise to a maxiumum at solar noon.Insolation is the amount of solar energy received on a surface over a period of time. It is usually expressed in units of kilowatts-hours per square metre (kwH/m2), "peak sun hours", megajoules per square metre (MJ/m2) or Langleys (L), for the given period such as a day or hour.

1 kWh/m2

= 1 peak hour

 

= 3.6 MJ/m2

 

= 0.00116 L

Daily values of insolation are usually presented as monthly averages for different latitudes, tilts and specific locations (to allow for differences in weather effects).The most common measure of insolation used is 'peak sun hours'.Numbers on figures indicate the average daily number of peak sunlight hours for the given month/time period.

Step 4: Size your system

In general, solar photovoltaic systems sized between 1 to 5 kilowatts are usually sufficient to meet the electricity needs of most homes. One advantage of grid-tied systems is that you can use solar PV to supplement or offset some of your electricity needs; therefore you can size your system to match your budget and always add to the system later if needed.

Also as a side note, here's a rule of thumb to remember to help you estimate the physical space your PV system might need: one square foot yields 10 watts. So in bright sunlight, a square foot of a conventional photovoltaic panel will produce 10 watts of power. A 1,000 watt system, for example, may need 100 – 200 square feet of area, depending on the type of PV module used.

Step 5: Know your rebates

Many states and local jurisdictions offer rebates, tax credits and other types of incentives to homeowners for installing residential photovoltaic and solar domestic water systems. To view a comprehensive database of the incentives available for renewable energy visit Governmental Incentives & Grants Link

At the Federal Level, you can take advantage of a 30% tax credit (of up to $2,000) for the purchase of a residential solar system at least until December 31, 2008. Starting at the beginning of 2009 the 30% tax credit will NOT have a cap.

Step 6: Run the numbers

Although the cost for a solar PV system will depend on the size of the system you intend to install, your electricity rate, the amount of kilowatt hours you expect to generate, and the state/local rebates/tax credits that may be available, the formulas for calculating the returns are pretty much the same.

For those who appreciate having the formulas, use the ones listed below to do a quick ballpark estimate of how much a solar photovoltaic system might cost you.

Initial Investment

 

Retail Price for Solar Photovoltaic System
(include components and labor for installation)

+

Building Permits

-

$2,000 Federal Tax Credit

-

State or Local Tax Credit or Rebate

-

Utility Rebate or Other Incentive

=

Net Investment

Annual Electricity Bill Savings

 

Kilowatts of electricity generated from PV per year

x

Kilowatt hours used per year

=

Annual Kilowatt energy from the PV system

 

 

Annual Kilowatt energy from the PV system

x

Current Residential Electricity Rate

=

Annual $$ Saved

Net Metering or Resource Conservation Credits (where applicable)

 

Yearly Excess PV Energy Produced

x

$$ credit applied per watt

=

Annual Value from Net Metering

Of course, a more accurate assessment can be made by a pro. Work with a solar power contractor to size and price the right system for you. As is true with any major purchase, don't hesitate to ask for several bids from different contractors.

Of course, a more accurate assessment can be made by a pro. Work with GreenerEnergy.ca and Verified Solar Installer to size and price the right system for you. As is true with any major purchase, don't hesitate to ask for several bids from different contractors. GreenerEnergy.ca has an extensive Solar Directory of professional installers ready to assist you with your home or commercial solar project.
Many solar power providers will provide you with a comprehensive estimate. Helpful information to know includes:

  • Total cost to make the system operational (labor cost for design and installation and equipment costs)
  • Equipment (Make and Model)
  • Warranty info
  • Permit costs, if needed
  • Tax, where applicable
  • Federal tax credits
  • State or local jurisdiction tax credits or rebates
  • Utility rebates
  • Expected Renewable Energy Certificates or Net metering credits
  • Expected operation and maintenance costs
  • Projected savings

Solar Thermal (also called Solar Hot Water)

Solar thermal systems capture the sun's energy to heat water and are one of the most cost-effective renewable energy systems. They are used to heat hot water tanks and/or a heating system. A solar pool heating system is another type of solar thermal system designed specifically to heat a pool or hot tub.

Generally it's worth investigating the economic viability of installing a solar hot water system if you have an electric water heater with utility rates of at least 5 cents per kilowatt hour and have tax credits or rebates available. (It may even be worth changing out a gas-powered water heater if your costs are at least $8/million BTU).

The formulas for costing out a solar water heater system are similar to estimating the cost for installing solar PV system. Many solar energy professionals can help you determine what system might work best for you.

Heating Your Swimming Pool with Solar Power

Although few jurisdictions provide financial incentives for using solar energy to heat a swimming pool or hot tub, in general, using solar power to heat your pool is a "no-brainer" from a return on investment standpoint.

The electricity used to heat a pool during the swimming season often amounts to the same amount of energy that homes-without-pools consume over a year. Combining a solar thermal system to generate heat for the pool with a solar thermal pool cover to retain the heat generated can further maximize efficiencies and extend your swimming season.

Most installers recommend that a solar collector used to heat a pool is sized at roughly half the square footage of your pool surface area. Solar thermal panels typically last 10 – 20 years and come with a 10-year warranty.

How long it takes to break even on the cost of your solar power pool system depends on where you live. In California or other parts of the Southwest, you'll break even in 1 to 3 years but places as "far north" as Canada, a solar pool heating system pencils out over a slightly longer period of time.

System Power Yeilds

Below are details for different sized system options, costs and performance based on your electricity consumption and geographical location. 

Grid Connect Solar Systems
1 kW - 1.5 kW  - 2 kW  - 2.5 kW  - 3 kW  - 3.5 kW
4 kW
produces more solar electricity than is used
4.5 kW produces more solar electricity than is used
5 kW  produces more solar electricity than is used

 

1.02 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 8 m2
  • Yearly power generation 1489 - 2606 kWh, depending on your area.

·         Greenhouse gas emission reduction 1936 - 3388 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
6 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 1.566 MWh per year
  • 39.15 MWh over warranty period
  • 62.64 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 2035.8 kg per year
  • 50895 kg over warranty period
  • 81432 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

4274 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

26.82%

 

1.53 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 12 m2
  • Yearly power generation 2234 - 3909 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 2904 - 5082 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
9 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 2.349 MWh per year
  • 58.725 MWh over warranty period
  • 93.96 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 3053.7 kg per year
  • 76342.5 kg over warranty period
  • 122148 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

3491 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

40.22%

 
2.04 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 16 m2
  • Yearly power generation 2978 - 5212 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 3872 - 6776 kg per year, depending on your area. 

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
12 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 3.132 MWh per year
  • 78.3 MWh over warranty period
  • 125.28 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 4071.6 kg per year
  • 101790 kg over warranty period
  • 162864 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

2708 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

53.63%

 

2.55 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 20 m2
  • Yearly power generation 3723 - 6515 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 4840 - 8470 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
15 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 3.915 MWh per year
  • 97.875 MWh over warranty period
  • 156.6 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 5089.5 kg per year
  • 127237.5 kg over warranty period
  • 203580 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

1925 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

67.04%


3.06 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 24 m2
  • Yearly power generation 4468 - 7818 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 5808 - 10164 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
18 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 4.698 MWh per year
  • 117.45 MWh over warranty period
  • 187.92 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 6107.4 kg per year
  • 152685 kg over warranty period
  • 244296 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

1142 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

80.45%

 

3.57 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 28 m2
  • Yearly power generation 5212 - 9121 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 6776 - 11858 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
21 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 5.481 MWh per year
  • 137.025 MWh over warranty period
  • 219.24 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 7125.3 kg per year
  • 178132.5 kg over warranty period
  • 285012 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy consumption after install

359 kWh per year

Energy consumption reduction

93.85%

 

4.08 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 32 m2
  • Yearly power generation 5957 - 10424 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 7744 - 13552 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
24 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 6.264 MWh per year
  • 156.6 MWh over warranty period
  • 250.56 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 8143.2 kg per year
  • 203580 kg over warranty period
  • 325728 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy production after install

424 kWh per year

 

4.59 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 36 m2
  • Yearly power generation 6701 - 11727 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 8712 - 15246 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
27 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 7.047 MWh per year
  • 176.175 MWh over warranty period
  • 281.88 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 9161.1 kg per year
  • 229027.5 kg over warranty period
  • 366444 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy production after install

1207 kWh per year

 

5.1 kW grid connected solar system

  • Unshaded south facing roof space required 40 m2
  • Yearly power generation 7446 - 13031 kWh, depending on your area.
  • Greenhouse gas emission reduction 9680 - 16940 kg per year, depending on your area.

System specifications

grid connect solar inverter
30 x 175W solar panels

Warranty on Solar Panels

25 years

System annual output

  • 7.83 MWh per year
  • 195.75 MWh over warranty period
  • 313.2 MWh over solar panel expected lifetime

Greenhouse gas emission reduction

  • 10179 kg per year
  • 254475 kg over warranty period
  • 407160 kg over solar panel expected lifetime

Expected annual energy production after install

1990 kWh per year

 

# Data Source: NASA (using ground and satellite climate data)

 

NOTE: Information above is based on your inputs and is a a guide as to the renewable energy equipment required. Please consult an GreenerEnergy.ca representative for more detailed information.

Determining Your Electricity Consumption

Two methods for determining energy consumption are available. Calculate Your  Energy Costs
 

Option 1 - look at your current electricity bill

To determine your energy consumption you can look at your electricity bill and get your average daily energy usage, usually measured in kilowatts (kWh)

 

Note: The average household uses about 16 kWh per day

 

Option 2 - Custom energy consumption details

If you do not have your electricity bill, or plan on changing your energy consumption you can fill out the load analysis tables below.

 

Electrical load analysis

 The load analysis will assist you in determining your load and calculating energy use. It lists power requirements (loads) of typical lights and appliances used in the various rooms of your house.

  Correct power ratings (in watts) should be obtained from the nameplates or manufacturer’s literature, or by contacting the manufacturer.

 The total energy consumed per day is calculated by multiplying the rating of the appliances by the number of hours that they are used. It is measured in watt-hours per day.  

Add ALL the appliances that you plan to power with this renewable energy system.
Tip: 24 hours = 1440 mins, 12 hours = 720 mins, etc

Wind Resource Map-World

This site gives a rough idea of wind speed in your area, based on address, using Google maps. Please note that determination of likely energy output of a wind system is extremely site-specific; that is, prevailing conditions at the specific site in question are far more important to this evaluation than wide-area maps like those linked below. For example, potential sites only a few hundred meters apart can have very different energy production potential, based on differences in surface terrain, nearby obstructions, wind flow patterns and prevailing wind direction. There is no substitute for real data, collected on-site by an anemometer placed on a tower at the proposed turbine height. Click here to find a rough estimate of your local wind speed


Wind Resource Map- Mexico

Large scale overview of wind power resources for all of Mexico.

Please note that the wind speed classes are taken at 30 m (100 ft), instead of the usual 10 m (33 ft).


Wind Classes for Wind Maps

Each wind power class should span two power densities. For example, Wind Power Class = 3 represents the Wind Power Density range between 150 W/m2 and 200 W/m2. The offset cells in the first column attempt to illustrate this concept.

Classes of wind power density at 10 m and 50 m (a)

Wind Power
Class*

10 m (33 ft)

50 m (164 ft)

 

Wind Power Density (W/m2)

Speed (b) m/s (mph)

Wind Power Density (W/m2)

Speed (b) m/s (mph)

 

  1

0

0

0

0

 

100

4.4 (9.8)

200

5.6 (12.5)

  2

150

5.1 (11.5)

300

6.4 (14.3)

  3

200

5.6 (12.5)

400

7.0 (15.7)

  4

250

6.0 (13.4)

500

7.5 (16.8)

  5

300

6.4 (14.3)

600

8.0 (17.9)

  6

400

7.0 (15.7)

800

8.8 (19.7)

  7

1000

9.4 (21.1)

2000

11.9 (26.6)

 

(a) Vertical extrapolation of wind speed based on the 1/7 power law.

(b) Mean wind speed is based on Rayleigh speed distribution of equivalent mean wind power density. Wind speed is for standard sea-level conditions.


Wind Resource Maps - USA, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands

Links to maps that show average wind speed and wind resources for all of the U.S. states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The popularity and utility cost-parity of wind-generated electricity has led, in recent years, to a great deal of wind resource mapping. Most states’ wind maps are available through the Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE) website. Visit EERE often for updates to the maps.

There is a variety of maps available that provide large-scale data on the average winds speeds for different states. The second table below takes you to the links for all these maps. You'll find that some of the maps are less detailed than others. For the wind maps which show only what are called “wind power classes”, use the first table to determine the corresponding range of winds speeds those classes represent.

PLEASE NOTE that wind maps of this scale almost never show data below a height of 30 meters (about 97 feet) above the ground. Given the many possible obstructions (trees, buildings, landforms, etc.), it would be almost impossible to gather accurate information for mapping below that height. Turbulence is the chief enemy of wind power generation, so it is essential to place any substantial wind turbine above local obstructions, by at least 30 feet. Higher is almost always better. Also note that average windspeeds below about 10 or 11 MPH are not generally suitable for cost-effective energy production.


Wind Classes for US-DOE Wind Maps

Classes of wind power density at 10 m. and 50 m.

Wind Power
Class

10 m. (33 ft)

50 m. (164 ft)

 

Wind Power Density (W/m2)

Speed m/s (mph)

Wind Power Density (W/m2)

Speed m/s (mph)

 

  1

0

0

0

0

 

100

4.4 (9.8)

200

5.6 (12.5)

  2

150

5.1 (11.5)

300

6.4 (14.3)

  3

200

5.6 (12.5)

400

7.0 (15.7)

  4

250

6.0 (13.4)

500

7.5 (16.8)

  5

300

6.4 (14.3)

600

8.0 (17.9)

  6

400

7.0 (15.7)

800

8.8 (19.7)

  7

1000

9.4 (21.1)

2000

11.9 (26.6)

 

Links to Wind Maps and Small Wind Consumer Guides for U.S. States

To view wind maps for ALL STATES EXCEPT those listed in the table below, click here to link to the EERE web page for the U.S. On that page, click on the state you’re interested in seeing. For the states and territories below, the EERE does not presently offer the same high-quality mapping as for the rest of the states; instead, these links will present low-detail, wide-area state maps showing wind classes for each state. Check back at EERE often for updates as new data is made available.

State

Wind Maps

ALABAMA

Wind Map

FLORIDA

Wind Map

KENTUCKY

Wind Map

LOUISIANA

Wind Map

MISSISSIPPI

Wind Map

TENNESSEE

Wind Map

US Territories

PUERTO RICO

Wind Map

 

VIRGIN ISLANDS

Wind Map

 


U.S. DOE Small Wind Consumer’s Guide

The EERE and most States also offer Small Wind Consumer Guides, which present further information related to small-scale, consumer-level energy production. These files are PDF documents, available by clicking your chosen State on the U.S. map here. A general, nationwide consumer’s guide can be found in English here and in Spanish here.


Solar Insolation Map - Caribbean, Mexico & Central America

Use this solar insolation map of Mexico and Central America to help you determine the size of the solar electric system you will need during the time of the year when there's the least amount of sun (worst case).

Mexico and Central America Solar Insolation Map

This map shows the amount of solar energy in hours, received each day on an optimally tilted surface during the worst month of the year for sourthern USA, Mexico, Central America and northern South America. Source: NREL.

Solar Insolation Map - South America

Use this solar insolation data for South America to help you determine the size of the solar electric system you will need during the time of the year when there's the least amount of sun (worst case).

South America Solar Insolation Map


This map shows the amount of solar energy in hours, received each day on an optimally tilted surface during the worst month of the year for South America.

Solar Insolation Data - USA Cities

Solar insolation data for several cities across the USA.

USA Solar Insolation Data for Many Cities

Find the city closest to you and select the low value for your calculation (the worst case value) for off-grid systems.

State

City

High

Low

Avg

 

State

City

High

Low

Avg

AK

Fairbanks

5.87

2.12

3.99

 

MO

Columbia

5.50

3.97

4.73

AK

Matanuska

5.24

1.74

3.55

 

MO

St. Louis

4.87

3.24

4.38

AL

Montgomery

4.69

3.37

4.23

 

MS

Meridian

4.86

3.64

4.43

AR

Bethel

6.29

2.37

3.81

 

MT

Glasgow

5.97

4.09

5.15

AR

Little Rock

5.29

3.88

4.69

 

MT

Great Falls

5.70

3.66

4.93

AZ

Tucson

7.42

6.01

6.57

 

MT

Summit

5.17

2.36

3.99

AZ

Page

7.30

5.65

6.36

 

NM

Albuquerque

7.16

6.21

6.77

AZ

Phoenix

7.13

5.78

6.58

 

NB

Lincoln

5.40

4.38

4.79

CA

Santa Maria

6.52

5.42

5.94

 

NB

N. Omaha

5.28

4.26

4.90

CA

Riverside

6.35

5.35

5.87

 

NC

Cape Hatteras

5.81

4.69

5.31

CA

Davis

6.09

3.31

5.10

 

NC

Greensboro

5.05

4.00

4.71

CA

Fresno

6.19

3.42

5.38

 

ND

Bismarck

5.48

3.97

5.01

CA

Los Angeles

6.14

5.03

5.62

 

NJ

Sea Brook

4.76

3.20

4.21

CA

Soda Springs

6.47

4.40

5.60

 

NV

Las Vegas

7.13

5.84

6.41

CA

La Jolla

5.24

4.29

4.77

 

NV

Ely

6.48

5.49

5.98

CA

Inyokern

8.70

6.87

7.66

 

NY

Binghamton

3.93

1.62

3.16

CO

Grandby

7.47

5.15

5.69

 

NY

Ithaca

4.57

2.29

3.79

CO

Grand Lake

5.86

3.56

5.08

 

NY

Schenectady

3.92

2.53

3.55

CO

Grand Junction

6.34

5.23

5.85

 

NY

Rochester

4.22

1.58

3.31

CO

Boulder

5.72

4.44

4.87

 

NY

New York City

4.97

3.03

4.08

CT

Hartford

5.40

3.33

4.74

 

OH

Columbus

5.26

2.66

4.15

DC

Washington

4.69

3.37

4.23

 

OH

Cleveland

4.79

2.69

3.94

FL

Appalachicola

5.98

4.92

5.49

 

OK

Stillwater

5.52

4.22

4.99

FL

Belie Is.

5.31

4.58

4.99

 

OK

Oklahoma City

6.26

4.98

5.59

FL

Miami

6.26

5.05

5.62

 

OR

Astoria

4.76

1.99

3.72

FL

Gainesville

5.81

4.71

5.27

 

OR

Corvallis

5.71

1.90

4.03

FL

Tampa

6.16

5.26

5.67

 

OR

Medford

5.84

2.02

4.51

GA

Atlanta

5.16

4.09

4.74

 

PA

Pittsburgh

4.19

1.45

3.28

GA

Griffin

5.41

4.26

4.99

 

PA

State College

4.44

2.79

3.91

HI

Honolulu

6.71

5.59

6.02

 

RI

Newport

4.69

3.58

4.23

IA

Ames

4.80

3.73

4.40

 

SC

Charleston

5.72

4.23

5.06

ID

Boise

5.83

3.33

4.92

 

SD

Rapid City

5.91

4.56

5.23

ID

Twin Falls

5.42

3.42

4.70

 

TN

Nashville

5.20

3.14

4.45

IL

Chicago

4.08

1.47

3.14

 

TN

Oak Ridge

5.06

3.22

4.37

IN

Indianapolis

5.02

2.55

4.21

 

TX

San Antonio

5.88

4.65

5.30

KN

Manhattan

5.08

3.62

4.57

 

TX

Brownsville

5.49

4.42

4.92

KN

Dodge City

4.14

5.28

5.79

 

TX

El Paso

7.42

5.87

6.72

KY

Lexington

5.97

3.60

4.94

 

TX

Midland

6.33

5.23

5.83

LA

Lake Charles

5.73

4.29

4.93

 

TX

Fort Worth

6.00

4.80

5.43

LA

New Orleans

5.71

3.63

4.92

 

UT

Salt Lake City

6.09

3.78

5.26

LA

Shreveport

4.99

3.87

4.63

 

UT

Flaming Gorge

6.63

5.48

5.83

MA

E. Wareham

4.48

3.06

3.99

 

VA

Richmond

4.50

3.37

4.13

MA

Boston

4.27

2.99

3.84

 

WA

Seattle

4.83

1.60

3.57

MA

Blue Hill

4.38

3.33

4.05

 

WA

Richland

6.13

2.01

4.44

MA

Natick

4.62

3.09

4.10

 

WA

Pullman

6.07

2.90

4.73

MA

Lynn

4.60

2.33

3.79

 

WA

Spokane

5.53

1.16

4.48

MD

Silver Hill

4.71

3.84

4.47

 

WA

Prosser

6.21

3.06

5.03

ME

Caribou

5.62

2.57

4.19

 

WI

Madison

4.85

3.28

4.29

ME

Portland

5.23

3.56

4.51

 

WV

Charleston

4.12

2.47

3.65

MI

Saulte Ste. Marie

4.83

2.33

4.20

 

WY

Lander

6.81

5.50

6.06

MI

E. Lansing

4.71

2.70

4.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

MN

St. Cloud

5.43

3.53

4.53

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Solar Insolation Map - USA

Use this US solar insolation data to help you determine the size of the solar electric system you will need during the time of the year when there's the least amount of sun (worst case).

United States of America Solar Insolation Map

This map shows the amount of solar energy in hours, received each day on an optimally tilted surface during the worst month of the year for the United States of America. Source: NREL.

Solar Insolation Map - World

Use this solar insolation map to help you size a solar electric (PV) system to meet your needs during the periods of the year with the shortest amount of sunshine for your location.

World Solar Insolation Values


This map shows the amount of solar energy in hours, received each day on an optimally tilted surface during the worst month of the year.
(Based on accumulated worldwide solar insolation data.)




GENERAL
INFORMATION