(5) 11 Evans Circle

Folks sometimes ask, ‘How do you like the solar?’ It’s like asking, ‘how do you like free electricity?’ Funny question when you think about it…

Bob Brown

What motivated you to install solar?
Free electricity (well, almost free)! My system has already paid for itself in energy savings alone in the five years I’ve owned it.

How many panels do you have, and if you know, how much energy are you producing, percentage of your electric usage?
32 panels (10 KwH). Since commissioning to today, my system has generated 46.2 Megawatt hours.

What has been the biggest benefit so far? What are you excited about?
A $13 electric bill, if you call it that. It’s for the meter and tax charges.

What were the obstacles to installing solar and what did you do to overcome them?
State regulations for incentives were the only obstacles.

Video courtesy of Tom Raffelt of New England Studio

What advice do you have for people considering installing solar?
It was a satisfying challenge to prove that obtaining solar power is not only great for the environment, it’s also financially rewarding as well, and in short order if you do it yourself. You don’t need a college degree to do this.

Anything else you want to share?
A brief history on this install, I did this entirely myself. I am an Electronics / Software Engineer at Markem-Imaje and wanted to create a 10KwH array in order to cover the majority of my electrical usage.

I started researching during the Winter of 2015. NH was still giving $2500 incentives at the time for systems in excess of $10K in cost. My system was installed by late April, 2016. Total “out of pocket” for this system (see spreadsheet) came to about $21,500.00. The NH incentive covered $2500 of it and the Federal Tax credit covered $7500 of it. ($500 of that was the energy credit of replacing the roof).

So the out of pocket came to about $11,500.00 for a 10KwH Solar system. Incredibly low cost by anyone’s standards. Obviously, this takes expertise to pull off, but if someone is willing to put in a little time and save over 50 percent of the cost, it’s certainly worth it. Payback for this system is conservatively calculated at under five years. Doing it yourself works!

Learn more details about Bob Brown’s build, how he overcame the obstacles he cited, and view schematics and diagrams of his system.