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Andy writes: Thanks Harry. Your experience with wide ranging aspects of buildings has put you in a good position for taking care of your own stuff... In the US, there are regions like New England where there is an attitude that is radically different than in more southern states like Texas...Only in the larger cities, like Dallas, do the regulations seem similar.... I live in a wilderness area about 100 miles south of Dallas, and we don't have many restrictions. Of course, if we burn our own house down, we have ourselves to blame :>)))....
Those on this newsgroup that try to make the task sound like some big deal have probably never heard of Heathkit, which sold kits for homebuilders from receivers/transmitters to color televisions for many decades. As a youth, I put togheter several kits of signal generators and transmitters. Even a non-trained lawyer, doctor, plumber, or dental hygienist could build their own color television (in 1960) if they just followed the directions and checked their own work.... That's the environment I was brought up in.... and believe me, a PV array is child's play compared to an NTSC color television.... Actually, Heathkit's first kit was an airplane, which any reasonably intelligent bicycle mechanic could put together and fly.......It all depends on the integrity of the design and the completeness of the directions... Well, good luck and thanks again for the rundown of your system.... It seems that you are getting a much better deal from your government than we are over here, tho the rebates that some posters claim are pretty good.......
However, I'll keep my 50K in the bank and pay my 10.5cents per kwh . :>))))
Andy in Eureka, Texas .
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On 5/19/2011 3:21 PM, Andy wrote:

One of my aunts, a high school physics teacher, built a Heathkit stereo amp kit back in the 1960's and had no problem with it. Heck, there was a time you could order a complete house kit from Sears so you could build your own home. ^_^
TDD
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Having to cut back shading can be a major issue. Several years ago a test was done in North Fl I think near Jacksonville. Trees were removed or pruned to allow the sun to get to solar panels mounted on the roof. Net results were higher energy cost caused by the loss of shade. Planting trees sounds like it may be more benificial than installing solar arrays when used in areas where solar arrays would operate most effectively. This doesnt surprise me since using solar energy to directly heat something has always proven to be morre efficent than using it to generate electricity via photovoltaics. Now the question becomes more complex than just whether or not to install photo-voltaic but whether to spend my money on super insulating my home, adding solar water heaters, planting trees or maybe adding reflective shingles on the south facing side of my house. How do I figure out what is the best way to go?
Jimmie
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Andy replies:
Harry, I like that idea a lot. In my case, I put the array on my barn since the wife didn't want a mess on the roof, and I was only doing it on a small scale experiment anyway....
I still have the PV arrays, and have moved to a retirement house where I have a garden, and am considering hooking them back up to run a small irrigation pump for the garden... But, just messing.... I have no confidence in the economics of trying to run the house with such a system....
Thanks for your input...
Andy in Eureka, Texas
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Also don't forget that many states that have promised rebates have defaulted on them. That would be a hell of a shock to my budget if I had installed a system and counted on that money being there. I ve had my roof replace twice in 20 years due to storms, First time was a tornado and recently hail damage. Also over the years that have been other hail storms that didnt damage the roof but probably would have damaged the photo cells. I had actually planned on installing a system at one time so I checked what it did to the value of my home. The effect was pretty much neutral basically depending on how the buyer saw it.
Jimmie
Jimmie
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