May I compare my well water setup to yours (3,094 usable gallons)

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On Sun, 14 Aug 2011 08:41:10 -0500, G. Morgan wrote:

It will work - but - just to let you know, out here, in California, you're not allowed to 'make money' on the solar panels.
You can bring your electricity down to zero; but you can't go lower.
But, with the last KWh costing over 45 cents, you don't have to bring it to zero to 'save money'.

Wow. We pay over 45 cents a KWh for the last two weeks, and about 12 cents per KWh for the first week or so.
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SF Man wrote:

I did not know that, thanks.

Can you accumulate credit with the power company for later use?

True that!
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On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 00:06:47 -0500, G. Morgan wrote:

The way PG&E works it out here, is that they don't charge you for electricity for the whole year. (Well, to be precise, they charge a nominal amount, I think it's less than $10/month, just to be in the program ... but that's a detail.)
All year, they keep track of what you use (we all have smart meters so they know what you're using instantaneously).
Then, on December 31st, they tally it all up: - If you didn't generate as much as you used, you owe them some money - If you brought it down to exactly zero, nobody owes anyone - If you brought it below zero, they say thank you for the free electricity
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SF Man wrote:

Heh, bummer!
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SF Man wrote:

The more I think about that, the more it smells. Why would CA impose a law that would tend to -discourage- extra power generation? Sounds like the power lobby got their way with your politicians. Last time I looked, your state imports electricity from others. I guess all that "Green" bullshit coming out of the mouths of your politicians are just that.
Don't worry, our state is almost as screwed-up as yours! We are not broke, -yet-. And nobody wants wind-turbines in their backyard, so the same double-talk goes on here.
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wrote Re Re: May I compare my well water setup to yours (3,094 usable gallons):

We pay 11 cents/Kwh for ALL or domestic electricity. But we have several nuclear plants generating the power for the past 40 years.
--
Work is the curse of the drinking class.

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wrote:

Fog is water. Your plants/landscape should be capable of collecting the fog. Or you need to xeriscape.
Or you could collect some of the fog for additional free supply of water.

I can't imagine it is necessary to run the cleaning system every day, especially if you were to invest in a pool cover. Additionally, the pool cover would tend to heat the water (if it is a dark cover) so you save both water and electricity.
I'd speak to several pool companies and see if your cleaning system can be put on a managed controller to run for one hour on, one hour off (and that would be my worst case scenario) which once again lowers your electric bills plus lowers your maintenance costs. You might be able to even go one day without running the thing and the next running sporadically. Just seems like you are running it too long.
Another option is to get time of day billing for the electricity and run the pumps off-peak.
Have you spoken to your power provider about getting an energy audit (currently for PGE they are $99 for a full house audit and then you may qualify for up to $9000 in rebates for upgrades, but they may also have suggestions about your pool setup
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SF Man-
I missed your description of your pool pumps' duty cycles.
Having lived in SoCal homes with pools for nearly 30 years (bummer, I know)...... there is no way you need to run two pumps (2+ hp) for 15 hours per day to keep the pool clean.
It makes no sense to run your solar panels 15 hrs per day.
Your entire setup is a ridiculous waste of energy.
cheers Bob
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I missed the pool pump part. I agree it would have to be one hell of a pool to need two 2+hp pumps runningg 15 hours a day to keep it clean. And I think he said he was paying 25c per kwh for electricity.
48,000 gallon pool here, DE filter and it can be kept clean with two 1 hp pumps. One is the main one and it needs to run about 6 hours a day. The other is the Polaris cleaner booster pump and it runs about 1/3 of that time, averageing maybe 2 or 3 hours a day. It actually runs the full 6 hours, but only every second or third day.
It's actually running more now because it's now set up for solar heat. But without needing that, the above schedule worked fine. Of course it does depend on the environment, what's around to blow into the pool, usage, etc.
I'd be interested in knowing if he's tried backing off the amount of filtering. That's what I did. The general rule of thumb is that the filtering should move water equal to the pool volume each day. But found out I could get away with less than that.
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On Mon, 15 Aug 2011 05:46:13 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

It's actually over 45 cents a KWh for the latter half of the month (only 12 cents per KWh for the first week or so).
The problem is that the pool cleaning is DESIGNED to have both pumps running. One is the filtering system which does NOT run the skimmers. The other runs the skimmers and the water jets built into the bottom of the pool to 'push' water to the deep end where the filtering system will pick it up.
So, whatever I do, it has to be TWO 2.2 HP pumps (yeah, I know, about 10 amps each) running for at least half a day. Otherwise the pool turns into mud.
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On Mon, 15 Aug 2011 05:46:13 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

This pool is smaller, at less than 40K gallons, and the filter is a huge oil-filter-like contraption in a big black bubble about 4 or 5 feet tall.
There is no vacuum cleaning to speak of. I did buy some hoses to clean the pool manually but it ends up being a hassle because the pool was never designed for a vacuum.
If I added a vacuum, the builders told me, it would break the jets that pop up on the bottom of the pool anyway.
:(
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On Mon, 15 Aug 2011 05:46:13 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

I did.
The pool turned to mud in a month.
First green algae took over the sides and then the water became cloudy.
Tons and tons and tons of chlorine later ... I'm back to running the pumps!
:(
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On Sun, 14 Aug 2011 23:02:01 -0700 (PDT), DD_BobK wrote:

That, I don't doubt!
I didn't design the setup. I simply bought it already set up.
The pool has to have both pumps running in order to clean because one runs the in-ground cleaning system while the other runs the filtering system.
You can't have one without the other; so both pumps must run.
The cleaning pump pushes all the mid-floating and sinking debris to the end of the pool which has a steep dropoff to 'trap' it all in place for the filter to pick it up.
The pool company told me it takes about a dozen hours to completely cycle the pool cleaning system so they recommended the 15 hours a day for both pumps.
Let's say I dropped the cleaning cycle to 12 hours a day, the next question is still whether to clean during the day or night.
Since there are mechanical solar heating panels, the obvious choice is to run the pumps during the day.
This was all pre-ordained before I bought the place.
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SF Man wrote:

I don't know much about pools, but I've heard it is better to run the filter/Polaris during the day. Makes sense, since we're trying to kill algae and they feed on light.

If you go full-solar you'll have a huge battery bank, transfer switch, and a giant inverter. It won't be cheap but hey, if you pole-mount the panels in the yard; you'll have less grass to water!
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On Aug 19, 7:22am, "Stormin Mormon"

There is no point in doing a solar anything to run just the pool pumps. He has two 2 hp pumps that are pulling 10 amps each. That would require a 4.8KW system, which is the size of a small system for a whole house. If he goes with solar, just make it a true residential solar system that's tied to the whole house and grid.
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On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 08:04:46 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

I agree with you ... but ... when I looked it up when it was first suggested, I noticed something called "dc pumps".
I didn't do the math (I don't know the math) but somehow, they 'change' the pumps from my 220v AC pumps to DC pumps.
Solar 'seems' to work for those DC motors (but I haven't figured out the economics on that).
I'd still need the 2.2 horsepower per pump so I tend to agree with you. Better to put the effort into solar panels and not into a separate pump system.
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On Sun, 14 Aug 2011 11:39:25 -0700, Malcom "Mal" Reynolds wrote:

Bearing in mind that it never rains here, but when it does, it pours ...
Some of my neighbors have 30,000 gallon water runoff tanks (basically concrete bunkers sunk into the ground).
They collect runoff water during the rainy seasin (e.g., from the roof), and funnel it into these holding tanks.
I'm not sure how long 30,000 gallons would last (with evaporation and leakage) but I might need to consider that for irrigation in the future.
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Facts and figures are good for evaluating your capacities, but usage is the most important factor. Me and my wife use approx. 4000 gallons a month. With 3 teenagers, your wife and yourself, I would guess that you would use close to 8000+ per month. Then on top of that, figure your pool, irrigation and other little things such as washing cars and etc.
You may be able to configure your pumping times to give you more Gallons per day. You should also do flow test on your well to see what the GPM's are so that you get the most out of it.
Hank
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SF Man wrote:

My well water comes from the city wells. Over a 150 of them, 8 million gals in ground storage, a couple of water towers and cost 42 dollars a month but that includes sewage and trash. The city says the state says the water supplied at the meter meets the current drinking EPA drinking water standards. Chlorine and fluorine are added other than that no treatment and it's fairly hard well water.
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