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A cleaner way to drive

Solar Pay Back

We installed a 3.6kw solar system in Jan. 2008. It cost $22,500 after all the tax breaks. Without the car, we would pay off the panels in 20 years ($90/month savings), with the electric MR2, the payoff is expected to accelerate to approximately 9 years by saving an additional $120/month in gas. Actual payoff is tracked in the following graph


I’ve heard of myths that the energy it takes to manufacture a solar panel will never be recovered in the operating lifetime of the panel.  The National Renewal Energy Laboratory published a FAQ here that says energy payback is about 3 years for thin filmed solar panels back in 2004 and is more like 1 year now.


Solar has really came down in price.  An EV friend of mine recently got a system through Solar City and his system was the same size as mine at half the cost!


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