Our customer, Andy Smith, wanted to be more energy self-sufficient with solar, make financial savings, and he had the fields in which to do it! So, earlier this year we took a trip out to the countryside to see what kind of system might work best for him.
Having surveyed the site and chatted with Andy, we selected a ground mount system on a Renusol mounting bay, to give us total flexibly on the location of the install, and because it’s relatively quick to lay down. This is where the first part of the ‘heavyweight’ install comes in too, because the plastic moulded frames aren’t fixed. Instead, they’re weighted down with ballast blocks – 3 tons of them in this case, once we’d completed the calculation. That’s basically 174 breeze blocks we moved into Andy’s field… by hand. It took a little bit of time as you can imagine!
Add to that, 35, 385-watt Qcells panels, totalling 13.475 kWp of solar.
We made this choice because the panel is a good all-rounder, solid, with a great balance of aesthetics and performance. Andy’s were the G9 plus versions too, which came with a 25-year warranty.
To connect everything up, we trenched cable from Andy’s chosen field, underground, and back to the garage where the electrics were situated. Andy had previously installed a conduit system with a rope pulley, so we were able to pull the cables from the field, and it’s a brilliant way to hide a pretty large cable. We also fitted a 12kW three-phase Solis inverter.
One request was that we spaced the array so that Andy could get his lawnmower between the rows, and we were only too happy to help – always thinking practically. Of course, as the cables are sealed underground, sheep can still graze in between the panels too.
As there are also kennels on site, there’s relatively high-powered usage and that leads us to the final reason you could call this a heavyweight investment. It’s down to the savings Andy makes and the export payments he receives. As Andy’s exporting on all three phases, he gets significant export payments, and the investment made has definitely put the smile of champions on his face!
As Andy tells us:
“The Renusol mounting was definitely the right solution for us, and my spreadsheet tells me that so far, the panels have saved me about £1,090 – about half on electricity that I haven’t had to import, and about half on energy I’ve exported. I know it won’t be like this in Winter, but I think I may well get back the installation cost over four years or less. One of the best investments I have made – thanks”.
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September 13, 2022