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Solar (voltaic) Panels Went Way Up?

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Posted by Ulysses on January 9, 2007, 11:00 pm
While I was not paying attention and futzing around with Southern California
Edison trying to get on the grid (and wasting time and money) it looks like
a 160 watt panel went from about $25 to $20 or more!!!  Is this correct?
Or is that for 2 panels?  I thought prices were supposed to be going down.
I'm not gonna be eligible for any rebates.  Not only that it looks like
Xantrex bought out the other inverter company.

Where's the cheapest place to buy stuff now?  I lost all of my old links due
to a teenage-daughter related virus.  All the stuff Google gave me was from
several years ago...

Right now my plan is to get my money back from Edison and buy about 3200
watts of panels and probably two 4000 watt inverters stacked for 240 volts
and keep the well pump I have now and try running it once a day on a timer
between noon and 1 pm and see if it works before I yank it out and put in a
solar-powered pump.  Anyone run a washing machine from a 4000 watt inverter?
I sometimes have a bit of trouble running it from a 5000 watt generator but
that's a 240 volt unit so it's only getting one half of that 5000 watts.

Well, gotta go see where the fire-fighting planes are headed...they sound a
bit close :-|

Posted by Martin Riddle on January 9, 2007, 11:35 pm

I havent looked in a while, I remember $ and  change per watt. I am
suprised its close to $.5/watt, Even 6/watt for the GE panels.


Posted by Roderick on January 10, 2007, 8:54 pm
 Ulysses wrote:

Yup, that's about what it costs.  Prices on panels are higher than a
few years ago.  But inverters are cheaper.

Try Google again, on "solar panel price survey".  You will see the
trends from solarbuzz, but that doesn't really help with shopping.
There will also be a page from ecobusinesslinks (I think that's the
name), but keep in mind that vendors support that page, so it's not

Panel prices vary wildly, so the only way to get the best price appears
to be by figuring out which panel you want, then Googling for places
that have it.  Some will post prices, others have an 800 number to call
for the price.  Make that call!  I found that while some of them had a
higher price than average, some were significantly lower than the
generally advertised prices.

Also keep in mind that if you go with low-efficiency panels such as
amorphous silicon, you will need more space, and maybe more racks or
mounting system, possibly negating some of the price advantage.

On taxes, if you're in the USA, I think theres a Federal break you can
get (form 5695), even if you're not tied to the grid.  Not much, but it
might help.  Unless you already took it.

Posted by inquiry on January 11, 2007, 7:24 pm
 I found this not so.. look at this site were they are 4.29 a watt

Ulysses wrote:

Posted by Roderick on January 11, 2007, 9:23 pm
inqu...@acemtf.com wrote:

Yes, wind power is cheaper if one has the right location.

And for the panels, $.29 / watt would not be unheard-of.  That's the
low end of the market right now, if the average price here


is to be believed.

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