Solar 'Back-Up' for $3000? Really?
A story in today's Chicago Tribune Home Section is intriguing. It mentions a PV system of 200 - 500 watts to be used as a backup in power outages. The cost quoted is between $2500 and $5000 installed. Supposedly easy to hook up and even portable. We haven't had outages here but this sounded interesting.
So, I spent an hour browsing at www.findsolar.com and links.
I found that the Feds will credit you $2000 for some systems, but I didn't find any credit from my state, Illinois. It still looks very expensive for any big PV project at our existing house: $38,000 to provide half of our current electric use, with a 16 year payback. And, our biggest energy cost increase is our natural gas (up 35%)!
Our condo association in Maui is looking at PV. Hawaii has a very nice 35% tax rebate! Guess they don't have a coal lobby like Illinois.
Is there something between the "backup" and full HVAC and water heating I could do?