Tag Archives: Lower electricity consumption

Reduce your electricity bill with a solar geyser

ESKOM URGES SOUTH AFRICANS TO USE ELECTRICITY SPARINGLY AS COAL CRISIS LOOMS: 17 Sept 2018

JOHANNESBURG – Eskom has called on South Africans to use electricity sparingly as 10 of its power stations are running low on coal.

The utility has confirmed the power stations have less than three weeks of supply left and some even have less than 10 days in their reserves.

Spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe says: “We don’t want to mislead people and create unnecessary panic. At the time, we also don’t want to create a sense of comfort. All we can say is that the risk of load shedding is always there, but we’re managing it.”

Source: https://ewn.co.za/2018/09/17

Mia Lindeque | 17 September 2018

Help Eskom and switch your geyser to solar

An electrical geyser can contribute between 40% and 60% towards your monthly electricity bill, depending on your household’s hot water consumption. We at Solar Juice can retrofit your existing electrical geyser with solar and enable you to help lower the pressure on Eskom’s coal crisis.  Many households use only the sun to heat their geyser water from October to March (depending on the weather).

Converting your electrical geyser to solar is definitely contributing towards lowering our country’s carbon footprint one solar geyser at a time and it releases the pressure on the much needed coal resources during this time of crisis.

Solar Juice would love to help you make the best of the sun’s amazing energy.  Our service delivery area: Western Cape (Helderberg, Boland, Cape Town, Overberg, Winelands, Breede Valley, Swartland).

Kindly contact Solar Juice at:

Phone: Leon Needham: 083 384 3840

Email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za  

Website: https://solarjuice.co.za/request-quote/

Reduce your electricity bill with a solar geyser

Reduce your electricity bill with a solar geyser

  • Written by  Janine Myburgh, President of the Cape Chamber of Commerce

Predictions: Unaffordable increases in future electricity tariffs

The massive cost overruns on Eskom’s new power stations mean huge and unaffordable increases in future electricity tariffs, says the Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

“We are afraid there is no escape from the consequences of the quadrupling in the cost of the Ingula pump storage scheme and the doubling of the costs of the two coal-fired power stations, Medupi and Kusile,” says Janine Myburgh, President of the Chamber.

“To make matters even worse, the cost estimates do not take into account the huge amounts of interest which Eskom has to pay on loans during the construction period. This includes dollar loans which have to be repaid with weakening rands.”

The original cost estimate for Ingula was R8,9bn but this has now ballooned to R36bn. In April 2007 the cost of Medupi was estimated at R69,1bn but in July this year costs were, according to Eskom, R135bn while the cost of Kusile has increased from R80,6bn to R135bn.

“We learn two things from these figures,” says Myburgh.

“One is that electricity from the Medupi and Kusile will cost well over R1 a unit and that costs will continue to rise each year along with the costs of coal, transport and wages.”

“The second thing we learn is that massive cost overruns are normal for big projects and this will also apply to any nuclear build programme. There are many examples from around the world which confirm this.”

Myburgh says the recent study by the CSIR found that the cheapest “new build” option for additional electricity was a combination of wind, PV solar and gas.

“These three technologies are all ‘quick builds’ and their recent history shows projects are completed on time and on budget and they are not subject to the annual costs increases we see in coal-fired power stations,” says Myburgh.

Eskom had now decided that it did not want to buy any more electricity from independent power producers.

“What this means is that the private sector will increasingly turn to roof-top solar which can already compete with the retail price of electricity. Eskom will lose more customers and as the demand for grid electricity declines the case for nuclear power will fall apart.”

End of article

Comments from Solar Juice:

Solar energy vs coal

Solar energy vs coal

Households can lower their electricity consumption:

An electrical geyser contributes between 39% and 50% towards your home’s electrical bill.  This translates to between R390 and R500 per R1000 of your electrical bill.  The biggest saving for South Africa is when we use less electricity during the peak hours (high demand) and we also set the timers to work outside those peak hours.

You contribute towards a healthier South Africa!!

A big THANK YOU to all the households who have switched to solar water heating so far as well as for those in the process of doing so.  To read more about the environmental contribution you make (one installation and 100 installations)….every switch from electricity to solar counts!! Click here

Solar vs coal

Lower your carbon footprint with one step

Solar Juice services include the installation of:

As well as the following services:

  • Service of existing systems (solar geyser, ITS heat pumps, pool heating) ….…. more info
  • Adapt the settings on your geyserwise controller & also show you how to do to it yourself ….

To request a service or an installation quote from us:

Kindly visit https://solarjuice.co.za/request-quote/ or email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za or call 083 384 3840

Solar Juice: Service area

Western Cape (Cape Town ,Somerset West, Strand, Gordons Bay, Kleinmond, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Malmesbury,Piketberg, Montagu,  …)  Please ask if unsure

Retrofit electric geyser to solar

Retrofit electric geyser to solar

Retrofit electrical Kwikot geyser with solar

Retrofit electrical Kwikot geyser with solar

We were contacted by a family in Durbanville to provide them with a quote for:  Retrofit electric geyser to solar.

It helps to timeously empower our client with the correct information:

During the onsite evaluation we noticed that certain standards needed to be implemented and that the geyser was also faulty.  When discussing with the owner, he confirmed that the hot water from their geyser was brown although the water running from the cold tap was clear.  We checked with the geyser supplier, Kwikot, who confirmed that the geyser was still under warrantee.  As standards change over time the galvanized drip tray needed to be replaced by a plastic drip tray and a stopcock needed to be installed.

We provided our client with the abovementioned information and Kwikot therefore came prepared to replace the geyser, install the stopcock & the correct drip tray & outlet.  This was done in a very short timeframe.  Please note that the initial installation was not done by Kwikot or ourselves.  Kwikot did the abovementioned work as part of honouring their geyser warrantee as the supplier.

Our client then accepted our quotation to retrofit their new Kwikot electrical geyser with solar.

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Servicing a solar geyser system in Kuils River

Service a solar geyser system…yes or no?

This article is about a *natural flow solar geyser system with a flat panel (as in the picture) which we serviced recently.  The question is to: Service a solar geyser system…yes or no?

*natural flow = thermosiphon (it is where the geyser is located higher than the solar water panel and no pump is required to circulate the water between the geyser and the panel).

After a few years of working hard to harness the sun’s energy to heat your geyser water, various factors may play a role in the continued efficiency of your solar geyser system:

The environment and man may have an impact on the need for a service over time.

  • The sun/birds/squirrels may be working away at the *lagging around the water pipes on the roof;  * lagging is insulation material which limits heat loss.
  • We sometimes find that squirrels and/or rats enter the roof space and damage the Geyserwise controller wires and or lagging within the roof;
  • Dust and other material may collect on the surface of the panel(s) and impact on the absorbtion of the sun’s heat energy;
  • Another factor may be that repairs to the municipal water network may result in debris moving into your solar water panels and impact its efficiency;
  • Just after the installation, the new owners are usually very excited to experment with the different options on the timer and over time they forget and then the settings don’t really suit their needs anymore due to changed circumstances in their household;
  • Maintenance work at the house may result in someone stepping on parts of the solar geyser pipework or other parts and damage occurs;
  • Smaller parts (element, timer, pressure control valve, etc.) may be or become faulty, although we stick to trusted parts from reliable suppliers.

We find that the service requirements differ from area to area due to the weather and environmental differences.  We therefore propose a basic service for our existing clients in order to keep the expenses as low as possible.  If we find that e.g. the lagging need to be replaced, we then first discuss it with the client and get his/her approval to replace it.  The basic service has a fixed cost (if we have to travel quite a distance, we will then discuss additional fuel cost with the client beforehand).

This is a solar geyser system we installed almost 5 years ago.

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Solar geyser installation Somerset West

A new client contacted us to do a Solar geyser installation in Somerset West. This is in the Rome Glen area for a separate section of their house.  We also *serviced their existing solar geyser system. Our client indicated the exact positions where he wanted the solar panel and geyser to be installed.  He definitely did his homework to get the optimal benefit from the sun.

Solar geyser installation in Somerset West

Beautiful indigenous garden at our solar geyser installation site

Solar geyser installation Somerset West

Installation of a thermosiphon system

We installed this solar geyser system as a thermosiphon system.  A thermosyphon system is when the geyser is installed higher than the solar panel and therefore ensures natural water flow.  (The system doesn’t need a pump to circulate the hot water from the panel to the geyser).  A thermosiphon system requires the lowest maintenance of all the systems – we advise our clients to contact us after 4 to 5 years to service the system.

We definitely cherish the view from this indigenous garden in Rome Glen.

This family has an indigenous garden and all their household’s hot water needs are met by the installation of solar water heaters (geysers).  This combined action ensures low electricity consumption as well as low water consumption (indigenous gardens requires little extra water).  These actions ensures savings on both water and electricity bills.

Solar geyser installation in Somerset West

Our view during the solar geyser installation.

Solar geyser installation in Somerset West

Solar panel for solar water heating system

 

Solar geyser installation in Somerset West

Indigenous garden at solar geyser installation site

 *More about he service of an existing solar geyser system:

Our work includes:

  • Check if geyser and solar panel(s) are still working correctly.  If we find problems and it is still under guarantee, then the suppliers are contacted. If outside guarantee period, we’ll quote on repairs where possible;
  • Clean the surface of the solar panel (for more efficiency);
  • Flush the solar panel to drain possible build-up of mineral and other deposits;
  • Check and reseal where pipes enter the roof;
  • Check that the element is working correctly and that the timer is set correctly.
  • Explain the settings of the timer if needed (clients may want to alter the settings for winter and summer months or for when they have guests).

Work excludes: (can be included after discussion with solar geyser owner)

  • Replacement of lagging around the pipes (as you know lagging helps to prevent heat loss).  If the lagging needs to be replaced, we’ll contact you while on site and discuss.
  • Any extra work to be done (we’ll contact you when on site and discuss).

Time at your house:  60+ minutes

Cost:  Somerset West area: R750 (incl VAT) for 2016.

Solar Juice services include the installation of:

As well as the following services:

  • Service of existing systems (solar geyser, ITS heat pumps, pool heating) ….…. more info
  • Adapt the settings on your geyserwise controller & also show you how to do to it yourself ….

To request a service or quote from us, kindly Click here

or email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za

or call 083.384.3840

Our Service area:

Western Cape (Cape Town ,Somerset West, Strand, Gordons Bay, Kleinmond, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Malmesbury,Piketberg, Montagu,  …)  Please ask if unsure.

Solar water heating without the rebate? It still makes a lot of sense!!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe solar water heating rebates introduced in 2008 ended in April 2015 and whether they will return is a matter of debate within both the industry and among consumers. SESSA doesn’t know whether the rebate programme will be reinstated and if so, what form it will take.

However, the conditions for solar water heating have shifted markedly over the last 7 years with the steep increase in electricity tariffs making the notion of ‘going solar’ increasingly attractive.

Even without the rebate, it still makes sense to switch to solar water heating

 Projected savings through solar water heating show that over the next 5 years and assuming a modest annual tariff increase of 8.5%, one will achieve, in Rand terms, as big a saving or indeed even more as you would have if you had invested in a solar water heating system at any time during which the rebate was available.

*SESSA Solar Water Heating Chair, James Green, takes us through the numbers.

(*Sustainable Energy Society Southern Africa)

Electricity Costs

Let’s look at a few facts as to why and how solar water heating should now be approached.

The cost of electricity has gone up by 100% since 2008, and energy efficiency   is now more relevant than ever before. Over the next 5 years it is likely that the kWh price will increase by another 50% or more.

There are some 2,400 electricity tariffs in SA. A price per kWh of R1,85 is chosen for 2015-16, but will be higher in areas such as Cape Town

Choosing a Solar Water Heater – The Research Steps

Choosing a solar water heater is quite daunting. It sounds like a great idea, but do you know what you are actually going to get? Unfortunately it is not as simple as comparing an LED bulb with a 6 Watt rating, giving the same light output (measured in lumens) as a 60 Watt incandescent bulb. Here you can easily work out that you are saving 44 Watts per hour for the same energy service.

When it comes to solar water heating, you need to have some understanding of how much electricity you are using in heating water by electricity. Then you can determine which solar water heater is going to meet your energy savings needs and which represents the best value for money.

A couple of simple, basic facts will make it easier:

  • For every 36 litres of hot water out of a shower at 40 °C the temperature most of us feel comfortable showering at, you will use 1 kWh of electricity (This is calculated using formulas that take the specific heat capacity of water and average municipal cold water temperatures into account).
  • Most showers use 16-20 litres per minute, so a 5 minute shower will use between 90 and 100 litres of hot water at 40°C.
  • Dividing 90 litres by 36 litres gives you 2.5 kWh and at 100 litres, 2.77 kWh.
  • With 4 people in the home all showering for 5 minutes once a day, the energy used amounts to 10kWh at 16 litres per minute or 11.11 kWh at 20 litres per minute.
  • Using an average kWh cost including VAT of R1,85 in 2015, that accounts for an amount on the electricity bill of R564 to R627 per month respectively.

However, it all depends on lifestyle…

  • Hot water use monitoring shows that hot water use at 40 °C ranges from 130 litres per person per day to as high as 220 litres per person per day, depending on seasons, regional variations and lifestyle.
  • To put that in perspective, for a 4 person home and at a tariff of R1.85 per kWh, usage at 130 litres of hot water per person per day accounts for an amount of R815 per month and at 220 litres per day R1 378 per month.

How much hot water do you use in your home?

A simple exercise is to add up all the minutes your family members spend in the shower in a 24-hour period. We suggest you do 3 different sample days and average the result. Then multiply the minutes by 16 litres for conservative hot water use or 20 litres for generous hot water use. Take the total and divide by 36 to get the kWh consumption.

The graph below gives you a quick illustration

Value for Money – Which System You are Considering

Having chosen the output of the SWH in deemed kWh savings per day you can also do an easy analysis of value for money. 2 simple exercises are:

  • Take the deemed kWh output per day, and multiply that by your cost per kWh from Eskom or your municipality. That gives you a Rand figure per day for savings. Divide that into the installed cost of the solar water heating system, to get the payback point or break-even point in days on your investment.
  • Calculate your savings over a number of years.  Take the daily Rand savings on the system for Year 1 (multiply by 365), and add it to Year 2 having increased the savings by inflation (8% is a conservative figure), and repeat over future years.

Rebates – Not the Reason to go Solar

So finally back to the question of rebates. Does it still make sense to go solar without rebates. The answer is a resounding YES!

To illustrate this is:

  • If you had bought a 150l SWH in 2008 with an output of 7,5kWh per day you would have saved approx. R22,000 over 5 years including the rebate.
  • If you had bought the same system in 2014 it would save you R33,400 over 5 years including the rebate.
  • If you bought the same system today without the rebate it would save you R30,000 over 5 years.

So even without the rebate it makes total sense to go solar and indeed every year the price of electricity goes up it makes even more sense.

Article written by James Hart (Solar Water Heating Chair) for Sessa.

* Solar Juice is a paid-up Corporate Class A member of Sessa (Sustainable Energy Society Southern Africa).

You are welcome to contact us if you want to find out more about how to lower your electricity consumption & carbon footprint via solar geyser or heat pump installations.

Solar Juice services include the installation of:

As well as the following services:

  • Service of existing systems (solar geyser, ITS heat pumps, pool heating) ….…. more info
  • Adapt the settings on your geyserwise controller & also show you how to do to it yourself ….

To request a service or quote from us:

Kindly visit https://solarjuice.co.za/request-quote/ or email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za or call 083 384 3840

Solar Juice: Service area

Western Cape (Cape Town ,Somerset West, Strand, Gordons Bay, Kleinmond, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Malmesbury,Piketberg, Montagu,  …)  Please ask if unsure.

Lithos Wine Farm showing the way with solar water heating!!

Location: Somerset West – Old Sir Lowry’s Pass Village Road – Wedderville Country Estate

We like to share our experiences when installing solar for other businesses and also to share information about the service provided by these businesses. The mutual interest is caring for the environment and taking the necessary steps towards a lighter carbon footprint. Today, we share information about Lithos Wine Farm. ‪#‎Solargeyserinstallation‬

You start being impressed with Lithos Wine Farm by first visiting their website (their story, their theme, their soil preparation, …) at www.lithos.co.za.  The second impressive part is driving towards this wine farm which offers you amazing views of the mountains, trees, fynbos vegetation and the sea. The third and most impressive part is their hospitality, award winning wines and amazing environment.  Be warned you won’t be able to resist acquiring some of their divine award winning wines after the cellar tour and wine tasting.

Lithos_Solar geyser Somerset West 1Lithos_Solar geyser Somerset West 3

I first visited Lithos Wine Farm during last year’s Helderberg wine festival and was so impressed with their hospitality, beautiful views and their award winning wines.  I simply had to purchase some of their wine and we keep it for special occasions – and life really offers so many special occasions!!

Lithos_Solar geyser Somerset West 2

You will notice the solar water heating panels on the roof which we installed for them during October 2014.  The solar geysers are hidden inside the roof and the benefit of solar geysers is that they are well insulated against temperature loss.  Both of these installed systems qualify for the Eskom rebate.

 These solar accessories on roofs are excellent indications of a home owner’s commitment towards using more environmentally friendly ways to heat their geyser water. Most of South Africa’s electricity is produced by burning coal, which has a major environmental and health impact.

Kindly contact Lithos Wine Farm at Tel: 021 858 1851 or info@lithos.co.za to book a wine tasting, so that they know to expect you.  Wine tasting can be arranged during the week from 9am to 4pm sildenafil 100mg price.

If you want more information about the solar geyser system installation, kindly contact Leon Needham at Cell: 0788933486, Email: Leon.Needham@SolarJuice.co.za or browse this website for more information.

Solar Juice services include the installation of:

As well as the following services:

  • Service of existing systems (solar geyser, ITS heat pumps, pool heating) ….…. more info
  • Adapt the settings on your geyserwise controller & also show you how to do to it yourself ….

To request a service or quote from us:

Kindly visit https://solarjuice.co.za/request-quote/ or email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za or call 083 384 3840

Solar Juice: Service area

Western Cape (Cape Town ,Somerset West, Strand, Gordons Bay, Kleinmond, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Malmesbury,Piketberg, Montagu,  …)  Please ask if unsure

Solar Juice installs at Eskom Sere Wind Farm

We (Solar Juice) had the privilege to install 2 solar water heating systems on the building at Sere Wind farm, outside Koekenaap (near Vredendal) which is about 350km from Cape Town. (The Sere Wind Farm is Eksom’s first large-scale renewable energy project and this is the first major step in a drive to reduce SA’s heavy reliance on coal to generate electricity). 

This was quite an exciting project to be involved in.  The work safety measures are very strict and well communicated beforehand. It is great to see that the first 7 of the total 46 wind turbines came into action on 10 Oct. 2014. These 7 turbine generators produces close to 16MW power.  This is enough to light up about 30,000 households. An excellent start for this project.

Solar Juice installs at Eskom Sere Wind Farm

Solar Juice installs 2 solar geyser systems at Eskom Sere Wind Farm

Eskom lowers its carbon footprint with this project:

The 2 Solar Geyser systems will help Eskom by storing the sun’s energy in the geyser water (heat) for utilisation when required.  A 200 liter electrical geyser would have resulted in the burning of at least a 1000kg of coal annually to generate electricity and would have resulted in 4.5 tonnes of harmful CO2 and other gasses to be released into the air every year.  This way, and especially with the wind turbines, Eskom is lowering their carbon footprint in this amazing new project.

Sere Wind farm connects to national grid in South Africa

Posted by: ESI Africa October 17, 2014

The construction of the Sere wind farm reached new heights this week with the energising of the transformers of the first string of seven wind turbine generators, a move that paved the way for Eskom to commence with the final commissioning of these turbines.

“I am sure that the team will continue with the same drive and commitment until all 46 wind turbines are in operation,” said Eskom Chief Executive Officer, Tshediso Matona, chief executive officer of Eskom, South Africa’s utility.

Sere wind farm is Eskom’s first large-scale renewable energy project, and forms part of the utility’s commitment to renewable energy and reducing its carbon footprint.

Eskom’s senior general manager for renewables, Ayanda Nakedi, said: “Last Friday (10th October 2014) we synchronised the first seven wind turbines to the national grid, adding 4.4MW as part of the final testing and commissioning process. The achievement of this milestone is in line with our target date of December 2014 and we remain on track to be in full commercial operation by end March 2015”.

Once completed, the plant will add 100MW to the national grid and contribute to saving nearly 6-million tons of greenhouse gas emissions over the 20 years expected operating life, with average annual energy production of about 298 000MWh, enough to supply about 124 000 standard homes.

“Wind conditions have been favourable, and this past Monday, the Sere wind farm was contributing 15.7MW to the national grid,” said Nakedi

The R2.5-billion wind farm will also help diversify Eskom’s energy mix and contribute to South Africa’s objective of meeting 42% of the country’s power demand with renewable energy sources by 2030.

Matona expressed his appreciation for the work and progress achieved, “My thanks go out to the entire team for enabling us to reach this most significant of milestones. This milestone has been achieved through close co-ordination between various departments in Eskom and our contractors. This is evidence of what we can achieve as an organisation when we work together.”

Describing Sere Wind Farm

Sere Wind Farm is Eskom’s first full scale renewable energy project, situated on the Western Cape Province of South Africa, located north-west of Vredendal, approximately 350 km north of Cape Town. It sits on a 3 700 hectare plot of land in Skaapvlei near the town of Koekenaap Eskom’s Sere Wind Farm will comprise 46 Siemens 2.3-108 wind turbine generators. The project includes construction of a new substation and 44 km of 132 kV distribution line linking the new Skaapvlei substation to the existing Juno substation.

Solar Juice services include the installation of:

As well as the following services:

  • Service of existing systems (solar geyser, ITS heat pumps, pool heating) ….…. more info
  • Adapt the settings on your geyserwise controller & also show you how to do to it yourself ….

To request a service or quote from us:

Kindly visit https://solarjuice.co.za/request-quote/ or email: Leon.Needham@solarjuice.co.za or call 083 384 3840

Solar Juice: Service area

Western Cape (Cape Town ,Somerset West, Strand, Gordons Bay, Kleinmond, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Malmesbury,Piketberg, Montagu,  …)  Please ask if unsure

A myth? Saving with solar water heating or heat pump

A myth? Saving with solar water heating or heat pump

Air polution vs clean energy solutions

It is believed that the earth receives more energy each hour from the sun than the world can use in a full year. In spite of this, South Africa generates 77% or more of our electricity by burning millions of tonnes of coal each year …. imagine the pollution effect on our natural resources: air, water, soil and ……the resultant health effect!! Continue reading