I finally got around to putting together a page providing an overview of our recent installation of solar panels for our Seattle area home. You can check out the details at http://dano.vfsystems.net/the-pacific-northwest-solar-experiment/. The big question is, does solar power make financial sense in the cloudy and rainy Pacific Northwest? I think so. But I plan to track my investment to see how the investment works out. I was provided an estimated six year payback after including all the incentives, which seemed pretty attractive in a time where the 5 year T-Bill is at 1.37%.
After the panels were installed, I spent a fair bit of the time automating the collection of data. I have my system configured to pull solar statistics daily and load them by hour into the database. This process allowed for easy retrieval and display using Google Charts, and should provide the ability to show a nice variety of charts once I collect more data. I plan to keep my solar page updated as the results come in, to see if the promised six year payback can be achieved. So keep watching this blog as I will provide updates as performance and financial milestones as the year progresses.