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Jones1

🤘🏼Texas,MYP,12kw/3PW’s Tesla Elect/Just Energy
Supporting Member
Nov 17, 2021
2,830
2,000
Atascocita , Tx
Greetings. I know a lot of people in my area have Solar on there homes. Some have Tesla Solar. I didn’t see a Thread for My area discussing the Install time , Permit time and PTO time of Tesla Solar. Also I would like to find out What type of systems Tesla has designed for your home. How is it working? What Energy company did you sign up for ? Do they offer net Metering? Tesla has advised me to use MP2( Shell). Tesla has also said a 9.6kw system would be good for my current energy usage of 13,500 kWh’s per year. I opted to get a Powerwall. Only 1 to keep cost down. Should I go for two? Tesla. Said I absolute have 2-3 days back up.
 
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I’d say some basic advice from me is:

1) use the cheapest electric provider pricing, or plan that discounts nights if your going to use backup each night. Daytime you’ll use solar or have excess.
2) get at least 2 PWs, if ya have one AC and other electric stuff ya need two for them to turn on even. Better off with more even.
3) size a little bigger than ya need since Winter produces a lot less. Also degradation over 10-20 years, 2% first year and .5 each year after is normal.
 
Greetings. I know a lot of people in my area have Solar on there homes. Some have Tesla Solar. I didn’t see a Thread for My area discussing the Install time , Permit time and PTO time of Tesla Solar. Also I would like to find out What type of systems Tesla has designed for your home. How is it working? What Energy company did you sign up for ? Do they offer net Metering? Tesla has advised me to use MP2( Shell). Tesla has also said a 9.6kw system would be good for my current energy usage of 13,500 kWh’s per year. I opted to get a Powerwall. Only 1 to keep cost down. Should I go for two? Tesla. Said I absolute have 2-3 days back up.

There is no such thing as "I absolutely have 2-3 days backup" when it comes to powerwalls and solar. It simply doesnt work that way. It depends completely on what your house run rate is, whats connected to the backup loads panel, etc.

I find it surprising that tesla would recommend a specific energy company, but perhaps things are different there. I would take any recommendation on such a thing with a boulder (not a grain) of salt, and do my own due diligence on it.

As far as "what type of system did tesla design" they design the same systems all over the country, so there isnt anything specific to your area that would be different as far as a system design from Tesla.

One thing to keep (FIRMLY) in mind is that tesla prices these systems for minimal contact during the process. If you are a person who has a lot of questions, or has specific needs, you will be better off paying more money and going with a local solar company. You will have very little contact with them during the process, and you need to do your own research about what is the right amount of solar for your home (and / or powerwalls) as well as what energy company to go with.

Dont expect them to provide a bunch of expertise in these areas. They dont do micro inverters, they dont like to do a lot of specific system customization, you will never get to speak with the system designer, etc.

If all that is ok, you will get a permitted system that works well, you just wont have a lot of input into it. Tesla generally does a fine job installing, but its important the correct expectations are there in the beginning, and "high touch" it will not be, nor will you be getting specific products , choice of inverter etc.
 
I'm on the south side of Houston, just outside Harris Co. I have a 14.8kw system with 2 PW's. I started this process in Jun 2021, signed the agreement with Tesla in late Jul 2021, the system was installed in April and I'm still waiting on PTO. I have a lot of lessons learned but to keep it short, here are the key ones..

- Tesla customer service really sucks and they will annoy the scat out of you. I kind of knew this going in. I figured the early pain would be worth it in the long run. Still not sure about that, ask me after I get PTO. I have fully paid for my system... still no PTO. A text to my PA last week was unanswered. I need to call and speak to a person on Tuesday. But rest assured, if you go Tesla there will be times of frustration if not outright anger.
- 1 PW has not a snow balls chance in hell of getting you through 1-2 days. They are really only referring to essential loads. If you just want to run lights and refrigerator etc, maybe so, but we live on AC (I have two AC systems) and these drive a ton of consumption. So does an electric clothes dryer and appliances like an electric oven. I have two PWs, they get charged to 100% every day. I have my reserve set to 20% and I hit that at 0145 this evening. So now I'm on the grid until the Sun comes up high enough to produce. Since I don't yet have PTO I don't have any credits to offset this usage. See the lesson above on Tesla Customer support.
- Tesla had my initial design using their new Backup Switch. I was a 'beta tester' they said. I didn't really want to be. The Backup Switch was eventually not allowed by my power company (TNMP) so my system had to be redesigned and resubmitted which resulted in a lot of my delays. In the end I'm happier with the Gateway 2 instead of the Backup Switch. But it set me back. They also changed my system from 425 panels to 400w panels (and more of them). Not a big impact, just another spin on the design.
- I did go with MP2. Tesla strongly recommended it. They had a slight discount deal for Tesla Solar customers. You have to call to get it. I researched all the net metering plans I was eligible for and MP2 was the best. They other plans have all now changed to resetting your credits at the end of each billing cycle. MP2 resets the end of December. If you are in an area that has Free Nights plan you may find that more advantageous. There is a separate thread on this. If you are TNMP you can't get that. I switched to MP2 even before I had solar installed. It did make things go more smoothly.
- On a positive note, the installers that put the system in were very good and did meticulous work. Other people from the Tesla office in Sugarland have been good to work with. It is the corporate office that sucks.

My suggestion to you is get more production and PW. Once you have the system installed you won't want to go through that again to increase the size of the system. I didn't realize just how extensive a project it would be. Probably the most complex home improvement project you can do. It involved designs that have to meet national and local and power company requirements. It needs drawings, building permits, inspections, from the fire department, the city building inspector, the power company. It just seems to go on and on. So do it right the first time, don't expect to have the energy to go through this again. Would I go through this again with Tesla? Ask me a year after I have PTO and all the frustration has faded away.

edit: if you want to charge your Model Y from solar you need to go bigger IMHO. This is my future intention. I paid a little extra to have more panels installed. I asked them to max out the south side of the roof which added nearly 2Kw more production. I may not have enough to charge an EV from solar. I probably can over several days of good sun. Or keep up with daily charging (except I work during the day and I'm not home). Or.. if you can find a Free Night plan and run off solar and PW during the day you can charge the heck out of your MY for free all night long.
 
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Thanks for the input.
My home was built in 2020. I have a single AC unit. With dual zones. My outside unit is 36000 BTU. It has a RLA of 13.6 and a LRA of 79.
So that is why I thought Tesla was saying 1 Powerwall could handle it. For 2 day’s. Obviously I don’t know. I would like to add another Powerwall. When I had selected 2 Powerwall’s it said I had a backup for up to 7 day’s.
I had a choice to pick a higher aray I believe the 12kw setup had me at 119% energy offset.
I was thinking keeping the lower system and adding another Powerwall. Or adding 4 -6 more
Panels. I would love to have a long back up. But
If once I saw Tesla say 1 Powerwall will cover 2 days whole home. I chose the cheaper system with one PW. Has anyone had more productivity form there Tesla system than what was promised from Tesla. Or is always better to go over what you need?
1653912774556.png

1653913211943.png
 
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I'm on the south side of Houston, just outside Harris Co. I have a 14.8kw system with 2 PW's. I started this process in Jun 2021, signed the agreement with Tesla in late Jul 2021, the system was installed in April and I'm still waiting on PTO. I have a lot of lessons learned but to keep it short, here are the key ones..

- Tesla customer service really sucks and they will annoy the scat out of you. I kind of knew this going in. I figured the early pain would be worth it in the long run. Still not sure about that, ask me after I get PTO. I have fully paid for my system... still no PTO. A text to my PA last week was unanswered. I need to call and speak to a person on Tuesday. But rest assured, if you go Tesla there will be times of frustration if not outright anger.
- 1 PW has not a snow balls chance in hell of getting you through 1-2 days. They are really only referring to essential loads. If you just want to run lights and refrigerator etc, maybe so, but we live on AC (I have two AC systems) and these drive a ton of consumption. So does an electric clothes dryer and appliances like an electric oven. I have two PWs, they get charged to 100% every day. I have my reserve set to 20% and I hit that at 0145 this evening. So now I'm on the grid until the Sun comes up high enough to produce. Since I don't yet have PTO I don't have any credits to offset this usage. See the lesson above on Tesla Customer support.
- Tesla had my initial design using their new Backup Switch. I was a 'beta tester' they said. I didn't really want to be. The Backup Switch was eventually not allowed by my power company (TNMP) so my system had to be redesigned and resubmitted which resulted in a lot of my delays. In the end I'm happier with the Gateway 2 instead of the Backup Switch. But it set me back. They also changed my system from 425 panels to 400w panels (and more of them). Not a big impact, just another spin on the design.
- I did go with MP2. Tesla strongly recommended it. They had a slight discount deal for Tesla Solar customers. You have to call to get it. I researched all the net metering plans I was eligible for and MP2 was the best. They other plans have all now changed to resetting your credits at the end of each billing cycle. MP2 resets the end of December. If you are in an area that has Free Nights plan you may find that more advantageous. There is a separate thread on this. If you are TNMP you can't get that. I switched to MP2 even before I had solar installed. It did make things go more smoothly.
- On a positive note, the installers that put the system in were very good and did meticulous work. Other people from the Tesla office in Sugarland have been good to work with. It is the corporate office that sucks.

My suggestion to you is get more production and PW. Once you have the system installed you won't want to go through that again to increase the size of the system. I didn't realize just how extensive a project it would be. Probably the most complex home improvement project you can do. It involved designs that have to meet national and local and power company requirements. It needs drawings, building permits, inspections, from the fire department, the city building inspector, the power company. It just seems to go on and on. So do it right the first time, don't expect to have the energy to go through this again. Would I go through this again with Tesla? Ask me a year after I have PTO and all the frustration has faded away.

edit: if you want to charge your Model Y from solar you need to go bigger IMHO. This is my future intention. I paid a little extra to have more panels installed. I asked them to max out the south side of the roof which added nearly 2Kw more production. I may not have enough to charge an EV from solar. I probably can over several days of good sun. Or keep up with daily charging (except I work during the day and I'm not home). Or.. if you can find a Free Night plan and run off solar and PW during the day you can charge the heck out of your MY for free all night long.
Yes it would be great to charge my Y from the Grid. I was thinking currently it’s about $15 per week charging my Y. But I’ve been playing in the Y watching videos and giving family members Speed and Test drives. I’ve only had the Y for a week. I figured the cost of charging would go down to about $10. Per week. I also hav a chance to charge at work. So I will try that a few times a week. I was thinking if I get home around 4-5. I would still have a enough daylight to charge the Y a little. I’m guessing it would be $7000 more to add another Powerwall Vs $6000 to add 6 more panels
 
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I'm in Austin so I won't be of any use as far as install times etc, but I have tried to text, email and it's extremely slow. Now I only call and I have had excellent service. In all honesty everything they have told me has happened and I've been very impressed. Here's the number. (877) 798-3752. Report back if they were crappy or helpful.
 
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I’d say some basic advice from me is:

1) use the cheapest electric provider pricing, or plan that discounts nights if your going to use backup each night. Daytime you’ll use solar or have excess.
2) get at least 2 PWs, if ya have one AC and other electric stuff ya need two for them to turn on even. Better off with more even.
3) size a little bigger than ya need since Winter produces a lot less. Also degradation over 10-20 years, 2% first year and .5 each year after is normal.
I just put my order in with Tesla on 5/19. Approved there design that after noon. Tesla set up a home site Assume they for 6/21 if I add another Powerwall now. With keeping the same Solar array. I wonder if that will push me back? I do like how my layout only has panels on the rear of the house. Will a 9.6 kw system charge fill 2 13.5kwh PW’s daily?
I’m asking anyone.
Thanks
 
I'm in Austin so I won't be of any use as far as install times etc, but I have tried to text, email and it's extremely slow. Now I only call and I have had excellent service. In all honesty everything they have told me has happened and I've been very impressed. Here's the number. (877) 798-3752. Report back if they were crappy or helpful.
Thanks. I will like to get this correct the first time. I will call to make sure I’m not having to add on later to the system if I need to. The emails and text replies are a little slower than when you buy a Vehicle. I noticed.
 
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I'll answer one of your questions. If you put in for another power wall and your design is complete, the real plans where engineering sends you the plans, then you will definitely get a delay. If your plans are not completed then I'd call the number I gave you and talk to them. They will be straight forward with you.
 
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I’ve had 2 other companies tell me That Tesla was a bad company to get a Solar system from. They told me that Tesla doesn’t have a good warranty and there is no way 1 Powerwall will back up my home with AC use. My House is a 2020 build approximately 2700 sqft. With one Unit. Dual zone. My first house was built in 2008. It was 1800sqft single 3ton unit. My electric bill is about the same if not lower in my new 2020 home. I figured my AC unit was just more efficient now. I was shocked that they would only use one Outside unit.
Sorry for the rambling.
Once I make a decision. I actually research it more and more. I go down a rabbit hole to find another rabbit hole. 😆
Thanks for your help.
 
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I just don’t see prices coming down. On anything. They may flatten out some. Over the next few years. But Gas will never be .85 cent and a Happy meal won’t be $1.99 anymore. I’m going keep my current Solar System order at the price I think I can afford. While trying to find ways to save on energy usage and Electric provider fees. If I can only power fans and a portable AC unit during an outage. It will benefit me more by saving $50-$60 per month vs adding another Powerwall or adding Panels. Cost is King. If I wait any longer. Cost might strangle me out of getting solar. I might regret it later tho.
 
Thanks for the input.
My home was built in 2020. I have a single AC unit. With dual zones. My outside unit is 36000 BTU. It has a RLA of 13.6 and a LRA of 79.
So that is why I thought Tesla was saying 1 Powerwall could handle it. For 2 day’s. Obviously I don’t know. I would like to add another Powerwall. When I had selected 2 Powerwall’s it said I had a backup for up to 7 day’s.
I had a choice to pick a higher aray I believe the 12kw setup had me at 119% energy offset.
I was thinking keeping the lower system and adding another Powerwall. Or adding 4 -6 more
Panels. I would love to have a long back up. But
If once I saw Tesla say 1 Powerwall will cover 2 days whole home. I chose the cheaper system with one PW. Has anyone had more productivity form there Tesla system than what was promised from Tesla. Or is always better to go over what you need?
View attachment 810514
View attachment 810515


There is Zero (less than zero) chance a powerwall could provide power for an AC unit and a home for 2 days. Now, when the sun is shining, from spring to fall, depending on your home run rate (electricity usage) its possible that you might have enough solar to charge your powerwall and run your AC during the day.

If your current electricity provider has data for you by the day, run your AC, check for a day you used your AC a lot and see what that days usage is, and understand that 1 powerwall has 13.5kW of energy total in it.

I am going to bet that you couldnt even run your AC 1 evening on a single powerwall when the sun was down, without draining it, let alone 2-3 days.
 
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There is Zero (less than zero) chance a powerwall could provide power for an AC unit and a home for 2 days. Now, when the sun is shining, from spring to fall, depending on your home run rate (electricity usage) its possible that you might have enough solar to charge your powerwall and run your AC during the day.

If your current electricity provider has data for you by the day, run your AC, check for a day you used your AC a lot and see what that days usage is, and understand that 1 powerwall has 13.5kW of energy total in it.

I am going to bet that you couldnt even run your AC ` evening on a single powerwall when the sun was down, without draining it, let alone 2-3 days.
I agree. I don’t see a AC unit running at 3000-4000kwh watts to run from a battery with a Capacity of 13.5kwh. The math doesn’t work. I was hoping that with the Solar panels during the day. They may run my ac unit. With now help from the grid. If the grid goes down.
My unit is 13.6 amps X 240 about 3200 watts.
The solar panel system will be 9.6kw. Buster hat is the part that I don’t know if it will work only from Sun. Tesla says it will. But the also say it will back whole home for 2 days. Idk.

1653927800670.jpeg
 
I agree. I don’t see a AC unit running at 3000-4000kwh watts to run from a battery with a Capacity of 13.5kwh. The math doesn’t work. I was hoping that with the Solar panels during the day. They may run my ac unit. With now help from the grid. If the grid goes down.
My unit is 13.6 amps X 240 about 3200 watts.
The solar panel system will be 9.6kw. Buster hat is the part that I don’t know if it will work only from Sun. Tesla says it will. But the also say it will back whole home for 2 days. Idk.

View attachment 810577

I dont understand what you are asking in this post. During the day, if the sun is shining, the PV system will generate power and likely provide enough energy to run your home and power your AC, during the middle of the day.

That doesnt have anything to do with "2-3 days backup" though. If your AC runs at 3.2 kW when its running, and you need to use it during the evening, its pretty clear to see that it alone will completely drain your powerwalls in 4 hours run time. That doesnt count the rest of your house.

This is why I said "there is no such thing" as 2-3 days backup guaranteed". If the powerwall only backs up lights and a fridge, then you might get a day or two. You are talking about AC though.

You also have "97%" of your CURRENT usage covered with that 9.6kW system, which does not include the power you are going to use for your car (and the fact that both you and anyone else in your home will expect to be able to run the AC more etc.

If you buy solar, and then start turning the AC off etc, unless you are single, you will be in for some HARD conversations about "why are you still doing that, we bought solar, right? "What did we get solar for if we cant even run the AC as much as we used to before we got it?" Once you get solar and any app etc that allows you to see usage in real time, along with driving your car and expecting to have that usage covered with solar (and it wont be, because your current system is only specced to cover your current usage) and you are setting yourself up for a pretty huge disappointment.

Just from what you posted, its pretty clear to me that 9.6kW Solar is not the appropriate size for you, at least based on what you have posted. You need a larger PV system, and if you want to only buy 1 powerwall, then you need to come to grips with the fact that you will not be running your AC for longer than a few hours (probably a couple) if you are off the grid, or not back up the AC at all (which would be an even more difficult conversation if you had a power outage and your significant other started wondering why the house is so hot and you cant turn on the AC).

I love my powerwalls, I really do. with that being said, if I was in the situation you seem to be describing, I would probably up the PV system size and ditch the powerwall for "later". Its going to be much more important to get enough solar, because you will not be adding onto it later. No one is going to "just add panels" so if you want to add later, it will be an entirely new system on the other parts of the roof on your house.

Use the money for the powerwall for more PV (solar) instead, if the budget is not flexible. If you dont, you are likely to be disappointed in the end result of spending money on your PV, yet your electric bill going up as well because of additional AC usage and driving your new EV.
 
I dont understand what you are asking in this post. During the day, if the sun is shining, the PV system will generate power and likely provide enough energy to run your home and power your AC, during the middle of the day.

That doesnt have anything to do with "2-3 days backup" though. If your AC runs at 3.2 kW when its running, and you need to use it during the evening, its pretty clear to see that it alone will completely drain your powerwalls in 4 hours run time. That doesnt count the rest of your house.

This is why I said "there is no such thing" as 2-3 days backup guaranteed". If the powerwall only backs up lights and a fridge, then you might get a day or two. You are talking about AC though.

You also have "97%" of your CURRENT usage covered with that 9.6kW system, which does not include the power you are going to use for your car (and the fact that both you and anyone else in your home will expect to be able to run the AC more etc.

If you buy solar, and then start turning the AC off etc, unless you are single, you will be in for some HARD conversations about "why are you still doing that, we bought solar, right? "What did we get solar for if we cant even run the AC as much as we used to before we got it?" Once you get solar and any app etc that allows you to see usage in real time, along with driving your car and expecting to have that usage covered with solar (and it wont be, because your current system is only specced to cover your current usage) and you are setting yourself up for a pretty huge disappointment.

Just from what you posted, its pretty clear to me that 9.6kW Solar is not the appropriate size for you, at least based on what you have posted. You need a larger PV system, and if you want to only buy 1 powerwall, then you need to come to grips with the fact that you will not be running your AC for longer than a few hours (probably a couple) if you are off the grid, or not back up the AC at all (which would be an even more difficult conversation if you had a power outage and your significant other started wondering why the house is so hot and you cant turn on the AC).

I love my powerwalls, I really do. with that being said, if I was in the situation you seem to be describing, I would probably up the PV system size and ditch the powerwall for "later". Its going to be much more important to get enough solar, because you will not be adding onto it later. No one is going to "just add panels" so if you want to add later, it will be an entirely new system on the other parts of the roof on your house.

Use the money for the powerwall for more PV (solar) instead, if the budget is not flexible. If you dont, you are likely to be disappointed in the end result of spending money on your PV, yet your electric bill going up as well because of additional AC usage and driving your new EV.
Lake Conroe, TX. 12x 320 Hanwha Q CELL panels, delta 3.8 inverter, 1 PW, -20KW/day summer. Signed 10/12/19, installed 11/20/19, PTO 12/5/19, Entergy charges .12/kWH, pays wholesale, .03/kWH for power sent back to grid, so set to self power most of time.

Gas heat, dryer etc. 3 days off grid during Feb 21 Freeze no problem. 1 day off grid withSept 20 hurricane, no central air, but ran a window AC in bedroom and fans.

Off grid much of spring and fall with no AC and dump most excess solar to Model 3.
 
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Lake Conroe, TX. 12x 320 Hanwha Q CELL panels, delta 3.8 inverter, 1 PW, -20KW/day summer. Signed 10/12/19, installed 11/20/19, PTO 12/5/19, Entergy charges .12/kWH, pays wholesale, .03/kWH for power sent back to grid, so set to self power most of time.

Gas heat, dryer etc. 3 days off grid during Feb 21 Freeze no problem. 1 day off grid withSept 20 hurricane, no central air, but ran a window AC in bedroom and fans.

Off grid much of spring and fall with no AC and dump most excess solar to Model 3.

So, all gas appliances, and no AC backup, and pretty low home usage (less than 1 kWh per hour), with sun shining during the day during the off grid times.
 
I dont understand what you are asking in this post. During the day, if the sun is shining, the PV system will generate power and likely provide enough energy to run your home and power your AC, during the middle of the day.

That doesnt have anything to do with "2-3 days backup" though. If your AC runs at 3.2 kW when its running, and you need to use it during the evening, its pretty clear to see that it alone will completely drain your powerwalls in 4 hours run time. That doesnt count the rest of your house.

This is why I said "there is no such thing" as 2-3 days backup guaranteed". If the powerwall only backs up lights and a fridge, then you might get a day or two. You are talking about AC though.

You also have "97%" of your CURRENT usage covered with that 9.6kW system, which does not include the power you are going to use for your car (and the fact that both you and anyone else in your home will expect to be able to run the AC more etc.

If you buy solar, and then start turning the AC off etc, unless you are single, you will be in for some HARD conversations about "why are you still doing that, we bought solar, right? "What did we get solar for if we cant even run the AC as much as we used to before we got it?" Once you get solar and any app etc that allows you to see usage in real time, along with driving your car and expecting to have that usage covered with solar (and it wont be, because your current system is only specced to cover your current usage) and you are setting yourself up for a pretty huge disappointment.

Just from what you posted, its pretty clear to me that 9.6kW Solar is not the appropriate size for you, at least based on what you have posted. You need a larger PV system, and if you want to only buy 1 powerwall, then you need to come to grips with the fact that you will not be running your AC for longer than a few hours (probably a couple) if you are off the grid, or not back up the AC at all (which would be an even more difficult conversation if you had a power outage and your significant other started wondering why the house is so hot and you cant turn on the AC).

I love my powerwalls, I really do. with that being said, if I was in the situation you seem to be describing, I would probably up the PV system size and ditch the powerwall for "later". Its going to be much more important to get enough solar, because you will not be adding onto it later. No one is going to "just add panels" so if you want to add later, it will be an entirely new system on the other parts of the roof on your house.

Use the money for the powerwall for more PV (solar) instead, if the budget is not flexible. If you dont, you are likely to be disappointed in the end result of spending money on your PV, yet your electric bill going up as well because of additional AC usage and driving your new EV.
Thanks. I will keep the one Powerwall. And ask Tesla to increase my Solar panel amount. Probably by 6 more panels.
 
Lake Conroe, TX. 12x 320 Hanwha Q CELL panels, delta 3.8 inverter, 1 PW, -20KW/day summer. Signed 10/12/19, installed 11/20/19, PTO 12/5/19, Entergy charges .12/kWH, pays wholesale, .03/kWH for power sent back to grid, so set to self power most of time.

Gas heat, dryer etc. 3 days off grid during Feb 21 Freeze no problem. 1 day off grid withSept 20 hurricane, no central air, but ran a window AC in bedroom and fans.

Off grid much of spring and fall with no AC and dump most excess solar to Model 3.
Thanks that’s some good info.