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Post install (1 year) anyone got upgrade done

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
My install is close to 8 mos. old, and I already am running out of solar power - as I have replaced both my ICE cars with EVs.

Has anyone done the following:

- Got more panels installed post install from Tesla
- Got Powerwall installed post install from Tesla

Earlier my system was spec'd for 16.32 kW but the local elect provider dropped it to 14.28 kW saying I am not using that much. My annual usage was 14 mW, and now with the cars might go up to 20-21 mW ...

Need to think about this in the coming year 2022 and see what can be done.
 

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
In the meantime, are you load shifting? In California, I regularly have used more kWhs than I produce and still have a NEM credit. Are you on a TOU rate?
I am in net metering, on the East coast, and as per last bill on 16th Aug my local Utility owes me 2700 units. I have TOU but might not put myself to it, as I think the pain of management TOU is more that what we will use

Standard rates: Net 13.5c
TOU Rates: Peak Net 17.5c
Off Peak Net 9.5c
 

MorrisonHiker

Well-Known Member
Mar 8, 2015
10,255
9,996
Colorado
We had 16.5 kW and 3 Powerwalls installed by Tesla in 2018.
In 2019, we were able to prove to our utility that we needed more. We increased our system to 20.5 kW and added another Powerwall. When the second solar system was added, they were able to use much of the existing conduit, etc. but they did need to run new conduit for the new Powerwall since the previous conduit was already at capacity.

Fortunately, our state changed the law this year to remove the restrictions on how much solar can be installed. This will make it easier for new owners to put in the desired amount of solar the first time.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
3,048
661
auburn, ca
I first put on about 15kw of solar and got PGE approval based on my annual usage being much more. I then got 5 batteries, (Could have had 7 but . I really do not need anymore than 5 anyways. ) I then just added another 15kw, and got approved by PGE. Not sure how, but, ..

The point I make to everyone is put on as many panels that fit and or can be approved. I have yet to hear anything say they put on too many. Now, will see if I end up being a big generator. But yep, if I get EV cars, I am all ready.

Another key point most miss is heating. Most are gas or propane, which is not cheap. I am 99% electric, changing to heat pumps. These take a lot of electricity. But, I was able to have a zero TOTAL ENERGY bill last year, and hope to continue. There is more that just AC, I wanted zero TOTAL ENERGY for the year.
 

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
We had 16.5 kW and 3 Powerwalls installed by Tesla in 2018.
In 2019, we were able to prove to our utility that we needed more. We increased our system to 20.5 kW and added another Powerwall. When the second solar system was added, they were able to use much of the existing conduit, etc. but they did need to run new conduit for the new Powerwall since the previous conduit was already at capacity.

Fortunately, our state changed the law this year to remove the restrictions on how much solar can be installed. This will make it easier for new owners to put in the desired amount of solar the first time.

Question for you is

- How is the ordering process, is it contacting Tesla and they advising us a price. Is the price competitive.
- When they installed it did you need a newer invertor. Currently I have an invertor 10000 and one 3800, don't know if these are Wattage, and if I add 6x -10x more panels, will I need a new invertor.
 

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
However is is less costly that a bigger system. If I understand your rate differentials correctly it may may not make that much difference. In California, I bank solar at $0.50 per kWh in summer and charge my cars at $0.20 per kWh.

When you say you bank at a higher rate, and use at a lower rate, when you see your bill do they say X Units banked at 0.50 and Y units used at 0.20. I always thought bank is bank, it is -ve or +ve
 

MorrisonHiker

Well-Known Member
Mar 8, 2015
10,255
9,996
Colorado
Question for you is

- How is the ordering process, is it contacting Tesla and they advising us a price. Is the price competitive.
- When they installed it did you need a newer invertor. Currently I have an invertor 10000 and one 3800, don't know if these are Wattage, and if I add 6x -10x more panels, will I need a new invertor.
We went with Tesla for both systems. We shopped around for prices for the first system and were surprised to find Tesla was actually the cheapest by far. For the second system, we just ordered it online from Tesla and they called to discuss it with us.

Our first system had 3 Delta Solivia inverters. They added a SolarEdge HD inverter with optimizers for our second system which is a new array that has some shading during parts of the year. Everything shows up as one combined system in the Tesla app and all Powerwalls share the same gateway.
 

Ampster

Active Member
Oct 5, 2012
1,821
505
Kenwood, California
When you say you bank at a higher rate, and use at a lower rate, when you see your bill do they say X Units banked at 0.50 and Y units used at 0.20. I always thought bank is bank, it is -ve or +ve
Yes, that is how it works in California. Solar in California is required to be on TOU rates and there are buckets that accumulate total dollars and kWhs for each TOU rate. In my case for every kWh I acumulate at peak rate, I can pull down 2.5 kWhs at the lower rate for the same dollar amount.
 
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smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
Yes, that is how it works in California. Solar in California is required to be on TOU rates and there are buckets that accumulate total dollars and kWhs for each TOU rate. In my case for every kWh I acumulate at peak rate, I can pull down 2.5 kWhs at the lower rate for the same dollar amount.

That's so cool. Maybe we also have that, never checked.
 

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
That's so cool. Maybe we also have that, never checked.

Yes, that is how it works in California. Solar in California is required to be on TOU rates and there are buckets that accumulate total dollars and kWhs for each TOU rate. In my case for every kWh I acumulate at peak rate, I can pull down 2.5 kWhs at the lower rate for the same dollar amount.

I will be approx 4000 units short if I do the math correctly. For me that is worth $905 (4000*0.135+4*91.20). My calc will be to save $905, what is my cost to add the expansion panels. Is it worth it. I am sure Tesla might charge a lot to put those additional 8x Panels to my 42x ...
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
10,874
12,600
Riverside Co. CA
I wonder if they will do it at all (install just additional panels), without basically selling you another PV system (panels + inverter + Powerwall + mounting etc).
 

smaster553

Member
Feb 5, 2021
77
13
New Jersey
I wonder if they will do it at all (install just additional panels), without basically selling you another PV system (panels + inverter + Powerwall + mounting etc).

I am not interested in PW as I don't have it yet, and my grid is my PW for now. I hope they install the additional panels, and just wire it down the same conduit without lot buildout.

I have a 13800W (10000W and 3800W) invertor and hope we dont have to swap the 3800 one.
 

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