## I’m Retired and I Want Solar Power

Hi Longtermsolar,

I live in Grand Prairie, Texas and use an average of 1550 kw hours per month.

What is ball part figure to go solar?

I saw there are tax incentives by the Feds but this does not help me any as I am retired and would never recover the taxes unless they have a program for retirees where they give rebates. Inform me.

Submitted from the Ask Your Solar Power Questions page of the website.

Response from Longtermsolar:

Hi There retiree.  Thanks for submitting your questions about going solar in Grand Prairie Texas.   Your area of Texas receives about 5.3 average hours of sunlight per day for each day of the year.  This number is the amount of usable sunlight that could power solar panels at optimum efficiency not including any energy loss numbers for flat surface fixed mounted solar panels.  This 5.3 hours number is not accurate if you were going to use an axis mounting solar system(the type which rotates towards the sunlight throughout the day.)

So, with 5.3 hours of sun on average, we can calculate how big of a system you might need.

The math is based off your kilowatt hour usage of 1550 kwh/month on average.

Here’s the math:

1550/30 = 51.66 kwh/ day of electricity use

51.66/5.3 = 9.74 kwh/hour need to be produced by your system during your 5.3 avg daily sunlight hours.

But, since solar panels are rated in DC (direct current) we need to calculate the true system size that would be needed before we can get an estimated solar system cost.

To backtrack the math from AC into DC numbers, we can simply multiply the 9.74 by 120% which would bring us to a 11.68 kW solar system.

I would think a 11.68 kW system could meet your electric needs to produce all of your power via solar assuming there is no shading issues either on your roof or on the ground depending on where you want to install your system.

Right now, I have heard people talking about purchasing solar systems in several places in Texas from local solar installers for roughly \$5.75/ watt.  These prices have decreased over the past several years quite a bit which makes the investment better for people like you.  But, the cost would still be VERY large.  Your system equals about 11,680 watts.

The total Top Line before incentives costs would be around:  \$67,160.00

Because you do not think you would be able to take advantage of the tax credits in your lifetime, it does not appear to be a great investment financially for you.  Since we did not know who your utility company is, its hard to say if you are eligible for any additional incentives which might make the solar system look more attractive.  But, you can look at the page which lists the current incentives to residential people in Texas here-this page is updated daily.

Submitted from the Ask Your Solar Power Questions page of the website.