Key question - should I remove my heat exchange panels that heat the pool and install solar panels that generate electricity? Will I be ahead if I do so? Details below.
We bought our house 15 years ago and the pool was already installed. The previous owner installed heat exchange panels on the roof, and the panels are inline with the pool water system. The panels are approaching 20 years old. My pool components are listed in my sig but key to this conversation is that I am still using a 2hp single speed pump on a standard timer. Ive also recently replaced the heater - its now a new Raypak 400k BTU unit.
We live in an area where electricity is expensive. Its a tiered system with the first tier being $0.18 per KWh, ramping up to tier 3 which is $0.38 a KWh. About 60% of my current electricity usage is in tier 3. Got our utility bill yesterday, it was $600 for the month. $114 of that is for natural gas, the rest is the electricity.
I have two things to do in the next six months. First get a variable speed pump. Dont need to debate that here - I realize that will bring savings.
Secondly Im considering installing solar panels for electricity. However to make that work optimally it means pulling down the heat exchange panels for the pool. Ive included a snip of my house from google maps below. You can see the exchange panels on the roof (bottom of picture) - that is an Eastern facing plane which is the primary roof the solar guys want. Otherwise I wont get near the efficiently of the solar panels spread across the other roof surfaces.
So, will I be better off with just a variable speed pump and hope it pumps to the 2nd story roof and suck up the electricity bills or go full solar, replace the pump and use a bit more gas from our new heater?
Comments please! Thanks.