Friday 28 October 2011

Solar PV Panel Installations - Feed In Tariff (FITs) to be cut?

It has been reported that Feed In Tariffs (FITs) for new Solar PV Panel Installations will be cut as of 8 December 2011. This is despite previous assurances that payments would be guaranteed until 31 March 2012 and potentially questions whether the government will reduce payments for solar PV installations already in place.

Saturday 15 October 2011

Choosing Best Position to install Solar Panels in Kent for Maximum FIT Payments

Are you thinking about installing solar panels in Kent to benefit from the FiT (Feed in Tariff) scheme? If you install solar panels you want them in the best position to get the most sun to generate maximum electricity and maximise your FIT payments for best returns.

We have had quotes for installing solar panels on our roof in Rainham Kent. We have two choices, the lower extension roof or the upper original house roof.

Installing solar panels on the lower roof would be cheaper as the access is much easier than the scaffolding needed for the upper roof. However we have checked the roof at different times of the day and the shading and sun levels are significantly different for the two roofs.

Sun on both roofs first thing in the morning but slight shading on the lower roof to the right hand side

Solar panel in Kent positioning to avoid shade for best FIT payments
 You can see on the roof later in the day that the lower roof is almost totally shaded, there is some shade across the upper roof but most of the roof is still covered in sun. We had three options for the panels. With a 3kWp system we could have solar panels fitted on the upper or lower roof or a mix between the two.
Kent Solar panel positioning on upper roof to avoid shade on lower roof
From the photos above we have decided to have the solar panels fitted on the upper roof only. The cost is higher due to the difficult access to the upper roof but from these photos of the shading of the roof the payback should mean that the FiT (Feed in Tariff) payments are significantly higher which will more than offset the increased cost of installing the solar panels on the higher roof.

Panels are now ordered so check back for progress reports on how they are doing!

Sunday 9 October 2011

VW Passat Sport TDI 140 Remap Tuning

The VW Passat Sport TDI 140 has sports suspension, sports seats, sports alloys but the same engine as the standard VW Passat TDI. There is a more sporty version that VW released with 170BHP but the standard Passat Sport looks the part but without the performance to match.

VW Passat Sport TDI 140 Remap Tuning
VW Passat Sport TDI 140 Remap Tuning
This is where Remapping or Tuning your VW Passat Sport TDI 140 can make sense. Without any modifications to the physical car the engine is remapped to give more torque and a smoother power delivery. Having had an Angel Tuning remap on my VW Passat TDI140 I can say that it truly transforms the car. Acceleration is far smoother and the economy improves as well if you drive with a cautious right foot.

Read a long term review of remapping the VW Passat 140 TDI Sport estate here

Thursday 6 October 2011

The Wisdom of Steve Jobs - Stanford Address

I heard this quote on the radio today on an obituary for Steve Jobs and was a quote from an address he gave at Stanford University. It seemed a very fitting tribute to him and seemed to sum up why the products he produced at Apple were among the best ideas.

"Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle."