Monday, 12 November 2018

October 2018 Record breaking Solar Month

October 2018 has been another record breaking month for our solar panels with 274kWh generated, significantly higher than the previous best of 235 kWh back in 2016 and 73kWh more than last year.

It's actually been quite a year of extremes with March and April 2018 coming in well under previous years but May and June and October now being much higher.

Solar panel record generation 2018
Solar panel record generation 2018

Thursday, 25 October 2018

2018 Solar Panel Data Updates

I've now added the data for our solar panels for the 9 months up to the end of September 2018. With the very long hot summer we've had some great months

May & June 2018 have had the best performance ever by quite a considerable margin. May 2018 was 447kWh when the previous best was 403kWh in 2014. All May solar data here

 June 2018 was 462kWh with previous best of 431 in 2017. The June data for our solar panels is here

Solar electricity generation summer 2018
Solar electricity generation summer 2018

Monday, 3 September 2018

Solar Data to June 2018

I've now loaded the first six months of 2018 data to 30 June. Some interesting data that shows the "Beast from the East" cold weather event in March 2018 and how fantastically sunny June and May 2018 were with record solar generation during those months.

In the UK as a whole solar has made a much bigger contribution this year too.

Solar Data to June 2018
Solar Data to June 2018

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

2018-19 Feed in Tariff FIT Rate Level for UK Solar PV

The inflation rate for December 2017 has just been released today which means that the level of Feed in Tariff for 2018/2019 is now known.

The Feed in Tariff (FIT) rate for April onwards is based on RPI inflation rate for the previous December so the 2017 figure will determine the FIT tariff payment level from April 2018.

The FIT tariff level for 2017-2018 was 50.67p per kWh for generation and 3.57p per kWh for export which is deemed as 50% of the electricity generated.

The headline figure of CPI inflation for December 2017 was 3.0% but this isn't the number used to calculate the Feed in Tariff FIT level, the value needed is for RPI inflation which is much harder to find as it's no longer considered an "official" national statistic.

2018-19 Feed in Tariff FIT Rate Level for UK Solar PV
Solar PV generation meter - FIT rates 2018/19

Delving into the ONS statistics page it's eventually possible to locate the RPI number which is 4.1% for December 2017.

So to calculate the new FIT rate we need to multiply the old value of 50.67p by 4.1% which gives a new value of 52.75p for the Feed in Tariff rate as of April 2018-2019. The level for export will increase to 3.72p

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

2017 Solar Panel Data UK

I've been a bit slow to update the data on my website over the past 12 months as it was becoming more tedious to do every month so I decided to batch it up. Unfortunately I subsequently discovered that the Sunny Boy inverter only holds 2 months of detailed daily data but full copies of the monthly summaries which means that a couple of months are lacking details.

With another year added to the totals it's interesting to see how the months may vary by year but often a bad month will be balanced out by a better month the same year so the overall totals are much closer that you might expect. For example 2015 and 2017 were only 6kWh different at 3207kWh and 3213kWh respectively. What does seem clear is that the maximum days are dropping which might be expected as the solar panels age so in 2017 we only had 1 day with over 20kWh of electricity produced.

Monday, 20 November 2017

UK Solar Panels 6 Years On

Our solar panels were installed on 19th November 2011 so we've now had them just over 6 years. In that time they've generated 19261 kWh of electricity which equates to 3210 kWh per year which is pretty good for 3 kWp panels. Our solar panels do face almost due South and have minimal shading so we are in optimum conditions for the best generation.

In that time our panels have also earned £9124 in FIT (UK feed in tariff) payments which have more than covered the installation cost of £8999. The FIT payment actually runs to August 2017 so we still have nearly 1000 kWh of generation to receive FIT payments on.

Is there anything we'd do differently? 

Not really. As per the image above it wouldn't have really been worth the panels on the lower roof which would have dragged the overall generation down due to shading unless we had multiple strings or an inverter optimised for shading.
The one thing we would do if we had panels fitted again would be to install pigeon deterrent grills underneath the panels. It seems that they're a perfect home for pigeons who like to use the shelter of the panels to build their nests. It's not just our panels, we've noticed them on many in the area.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

New FIT Rates from April 2017 - Increased Solar Feed in Tariffs

The FIT rate from April each year is determined by the RPI inflation rate for the previous December. This was announced today as 2.5% so FIT rates will rise by that amount from April 2017.

Currently we get 49.43p per kWh that we generate as our solar PV panels were installed in November 2011. This will increase to 50.67p per kWh from April 2017.
The export rate will increase from 3.48p per kWH to 3.57p per kWh at the same time

(Rates for 2016/17 are 49.43p for generation and 3.48p for export. Numbers calculated based on 2.5% RPI on existing 2016/17 FIT rates for 2011 installations)

New FIT Rates from April 2017 - Increased Solar Feed in Tariffs
New FIT Rates from April 2017 - Increased Solar Feed in Tariffs

Rates for more recent installations can be found here