Solar panels went live July 10 at 4:12 PM…

So far, we’ve produced a surprising (to me at least) amount of solar energy in our first week of operation.  According to Choptank Electric Cooperative, we averaged 90.9 kwh/day, ranging from 61.0 to 107.6 on dark and bright days, respectively (standard deviation = 16.5 kwh/day). Choptank’s hourly report of the first 8 days is shown here (sorry a little hard to read).  The red area is each day’s net quarter-hourly delivery of electricity to our house – this is mostly minus because we’ve been producing and delivering lots of energy to the grid since going live on July 10th.  We’re real pleased with this level of production, as is our vendor, Sunrise Solar of Chestertown, MD, especially since we opted for aesthetic reasons to orient our 50 panels flat to the sky, which is far from optimal, as described below.  Also pictured here is Sunrise Solar’s drone shot over the house, which is still under construction by the painstaking and methodical people of Paquin Design/Build, especially Paquin’s foreman, Kenny Seeling.  Kenny recommended Sunrise Solar to us, and we’d recommend in turn both Paquin and Sunrise to anyone, as well as Charles Paul Goebel, our architect. In addition, Erin Paige Pitts of Annapolis is creating unbelievable interior spaces.
Looking ahead…
Paquin has now moved our HVAC systems into place, two 4-ton ClimateMaster 45 SEER geothermal ground source heat pumps . We’re hoping In the next month or two to turn the system on so we can get a sense of what our electricity demand will really look like, sans the kitchen, lighting, etc. Maybe 90 kwh/day will cover us once our batteries arrive! More to follow…

Invisible solar

June was a key solar energy month for our project – Sunrise Solar of Chestertown, MD installed 50 SunPower 360-watt panels on the roof (here they are, at work).  Residential solar is becoming fairly common these days, but we had a slight twist.  We’d hoped to have a Tesla solar roof so you’d never know there’s a powerplant on top of the house – but it became clear that Tesla’s solar shingles wouldn’t be available when the time came to get a roof up there.  So instead, we found another way: our architect, Charles Paul Goebel of Easton, MD, designed two flat roof sections large enough for all 50 panels, and so now you hardly notice the rack unless you’re really looking for it, as the before-and-after pix show.  Phenomenally neat work, Sunrise!
Present status: we’re expecting to receive final sign-off from our local utility, Choptank Electric Cooperative, and then we’ll start solar-powering our construction site and a maybe a neighbor as well on the same transformer during the days!  We realize our flat-to-the-sky solar panel orientation isn’t as optimal as tilting them would have been, but we’re still hoping our system will produce enough electricity to run at least the kitchen and one of our geothermal ground-source heat pump systems as needed.
Next month, we’ll turn on the HVAC system and see how all this plays out.  More to follow!