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Forum > Miscellaneous > What to do with this solar panel? ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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What to do with this solar panel?
ShantiSeamstressing
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ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 6/4/13 6:54 PM

We're having our roof done this summer and want to get rid of the solar panel on the roof. It was put there two owners before us, to connect to a hot water tank in the basement. We don't use it, nor did the owner we bought from. What in the world does one do with a solar panel and its hot water tank? Thanks!

sewingsilly
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sewingsilly
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In reply to ShantiSeamstressing <<
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Date: 6/4/13 9:08 PM

Sell it. Take some pictures and put an ad on CL. I'm sure someone will want it. You may have to pay to have it professionally removed as not to damage your roof, but I'll bet someone will want it.

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PattyE
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Date: 6/4/13 11:46 PM

If it works still you could donate it to a local Habitat group.

ShantiSeamstressing
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ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 6/5/13 1:30 AM

Oh, two good ideas! Thank you. Now just to think about what to do..... (Our roofer will remove it at no extra charge....so that's one less worry.)

Kalindi1121
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Date: 6/5/13 1:01 PM

May I ask why you are NOT using it? My husband is in the solar industry (large commercial projects) and says that solar power water heaters are the one true way to save in a residential home with solar energy. It seems a shame to get rid of it when you already have it and don't have to pay the upfront initial costs that usually deter people from going solar to begin with.

ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 6/5/13 10:06 PM

Kalindi,
It's not even connected (hadn't been used even by the prior owner, but by the owners before that), and neither my husband nor I have the slightest idea about what's involved. I asked my furnace cleaning guy once and he said it would be a pain, as we'd have to go on the roof periodically and pour antifreeze in and he said it wasn't cheap (?). (There are pipes that somehow connect from the panel on top, to the tank in the basement.) We are fairly tight on our finances at the moment (finishing Ph.D) and we honestly don't need one more expense, one more maintenance, to think about. At this point, there's also no way we could have it there plus get the roof re-done. I guess hypothetically if we wanted to keep it, it'd have to come off for the shingles to be removed and replaced; and then put back on. You can't work around/under it at the point it is in contact with the roof. And we have to re-shingle, as it's a bad storm away from leaking. It's over 30 years old. But thanks for sharing about them. I'm sure it has potential.

Kalindi1121
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In reply to ShantiSeamstressing <<
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Date: 6/6/13 2:21 PM

Well, you may get a good chunk of money selling it to some DIYer looking to install one. I would try Ebay as well as CL. I have had good luck selling large items on Ebay for a pick up only. I have listed the items on both Ebay and CL and only got responses from Ebay. I think CL has started to run it's course with crazy scammer people ruining it for everyone. People have stopped shopping there. You have to pay a fee on Ebay, but it is worth it if it sells. I would recommend doing a "buy it now" but accept best offers so people can counter offer a bid if they are interested.

PattiAnnJ
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Date: 6/6/13 3:07 PM

"I asked my furnace cleaning guy once and he said it would be a pain, as we'd have to go on the roof periodically and pour antifreeze in and he said it wasn't cheap (?)."

That's not very green!

What is the opinion of a plumber?

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"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

Kalindi1121
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Date: 6/6/13 4:29 PM

Even after my post about how efficient solar power is for a water heater, I am saying you probably want to sell it after hearing it is 30 years old. You may not have the most efficient system there and it may be so outdated it may be very problematic to get working if you are not solar savvy or a DIYer. I am sure if that system was in the hands of someone like my hubby, they could make good use out of it so it is worth money to someone, but probably not a lot to you as anyone who CAN get it working may charge you a fortune because there is potentially issues that need to be fixed and once it is working it may not be the most efficient system so you don't know if in the end it is worth the money you will have to spend up front. Solar tech has come a long, long way in 30 years.

ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 6/6/13 7:04 PM

That's exactly it, Kalindi. I've done some reading on the 'net and this system is old-school, now. Do you think anyone would want just the solar panel itself? (i.e. not the tank in the basement as well).
Oops, adding that it's my roof (shingles) that is over 30 years, not the solar panel/heater combo. It's about 20 years old. Still too old, though.
-- Edited on 6/6/13 7:06 PM --

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