Friday, March 10, 2006


Inverter for sale?--grid-tie possibilities

Last year, as we were assembling my solar system, the Michigan legislature and eleven electrical utility companies (including DTE) reached a net-metering agreement for Michigan. Also last year, Outback Power Systems introduced net-metering compatible battery-based inverters--in other words inverters with all of the capabilities of mine PLUS the ability to sell back to the grid. Figuring my timing was just a bit off and happy with my system, I didn't think about it too much. Until recently.

I looked up the details of the Michigan net metering agreement, which can be found on page 237 of a lengthy PDF file from DTE (Standard Rider No. 16). I also called Outback to see if the new inverters are interchangeable with my current FX2548. They said that they were; furthermore, they can upgrade my FX2548 in about ten days for $350. A better option, if I can find a buyer, would be to buy one of the new inverters and sell my old one. The current price for an FX2348 is $1493, while the grid-tie-capable version is only a few dollars more. So, if I can sell my current inverter for $1300 or so, both the buyer and I can save a couple hundred bucks.

So--any readers out there planning an off-grid system who might need an almost new 48V, 2500W inverter? If you're nearby, stop over and I'll throw in a bunch of wire and other goodies you may need for your project!

(Note: I'm not sure if the FX2348 is the same inverter as I have. Mine was listed as an FX2548--either they modified the design to a slightly lower power output, or they determined that the 2500W rated output was a bit optimistic. I don't think I've ever pushed mine to anything close to 2500W.)

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