Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Rain and Solar

At last it has stopped raining. The pool levels got emptied a further 3 times and the submersible pump from Bunnings got a really good work out. I am contacting Metricon regarding the lack of land drains to see why they were only positioned on the one side of the house. It looks like we will need to raise the ground level in the garden on the pool side of the house and add more land drains, gravel and drainage pipes to prevent us filling up with water every time we get heavy rain. A costly project but one that needs to happen to safeguard our home and allow us to have a useable utility garden (shed, veggies, washing line etc area) I think its going to add around another $3-4K to the garden budget which means we may have to put some of the inside of the house projects on hold for a while longer.

On a more positive note we are having a 3 kilowatt solar electricity system installed, 16 roof panels to catch all that glorious Queensland sunshine - ha ha the irony after all the rain we have had! We choose a company called FreeSolar as their prices were extremely competitive. In total its costing $4,000 which we felt was a bargain, Metricon had given us a verbal quote of about $12,000 for a similar installation when we enquired all those months ago at preliminary contract. I don't think a 3KW system will mean we'll be selling electricity back to the grid but it will certainly help with the running costs of such a large house. Not that we have loads of appliances other than the washing machine in constant action! Oh I guess the dishwasher gets a pretty good workout though. We are yet to receive our first electricity bill so we have no idea how the running costs of this house compare to our old home yet. So we should be going solar by the end of this month.

The new puppy Angel is settling in well, a total sweetie and an excellent playmate for our son. Ah Home Sweet Home!


  1. The jury is still out for me on solar electricity as a cost still have to pay a service charge to the electricity company for having a mains connection - even if you produce enough to be fully self sufficient (because you are feeding the grid your power and using mains power for your house - otherwise if you use your solar power directly I think you need 12v appliances throughout your house - another expense to replace everything). And the solar panels have a limited lifespan, so will you really save more in usage charges than the purchase price over the life of the system?...

  2. Seems we have similar tastes in colours. My husband and I are about to start building ourselves. Wanted to know what part of Brissy you have built so we could see our colour selection in a large scale. Still can't believe just how similar our selections have been and have stumbles across your blog after we did our selections. We wanted to find if others are using the colours we have chosen and it seems we aren't alone. Congrats on the build such a beautiful home.

  3. I moved into my Metricon house this time last year. We installed Solar but only a 1.5kW system for a single storey house. We regret not going for the 3kW. We on average would be putting back a third of the power generated back into the grid. For one quarter we actually paid next to nothing. It is well worth it for anew house built to todays energy efficient homes. For those homes built before these energy efficient requirements were put in, then it would be difficult to justify if it would be cost effective to install solar.

    For this house I would assume the capacity is more than adequate, although this is on the basis you don't have the airconditioning on all the time, and that the pool pump is efficient. a good 3/4 of a houses energy bill goes to th hotwater usage. And since you are on gas, you won't have a problem.