I am becoming a Solar Power Nerd !! Proud of it too !!

dial showing how much solar power I was producing


Saturday 1378  – 1.03.2014

A couple of weeks ago I told you about my plans to have solar panels fitted to my roof; a long held wish of mine.
That post was called “Let there be Light and even more Light – you can’t get enough in my opinion” ( bit wordy wasn’t it! ) and you can read that post here

Well they are UP and my joy knows no bounds

I can’t stop grinning as you can see  😀 😀 . 

On this Saturday I hoovered throughout the house and car (you’d be amazed at how much electricity a vacuum cleaner uses!), cooked my lunch using my electric oven, did a load of washing  and used the dishwasher. Not all at once but one after another. I didn’t use any electricity from the grid; just the electricity I was producing myself. How cool is that !!

I have never enjoyed housework so much!

I thought I’d share some nerdy photos of the hardware and software that lets me keep tabs on what I’m producing and when I’m importing/exporting electricity from/to the grid, etc.  This feeds into my computer and displays all sorts of lovely graphs and stuff.

The photo at the top shows how much electricity I was producing at that moment ( this photo was actually taken on Sunday morning because I forgot to do it on Saturday! DOH! ) 

You know I do believe I could watch it all day.  😀 😀 there’s that grinning again!

The graph below is Saturday’s and it shows how much electricity I was using ( red) how much solar power I was producing (green) and the net figure (blue)  which is mostly nicely in the minus part of the graph where I want it to be. 


This one below shows, on the left, where the electricity is used and shows I used approx 45% of the electricity I produced with about 55% being exported.. 

The one on the right shows how the days electricity was produced with almost 60% being from my solar panels.. How gratifying  😀 😀 sorry grinning again.


These final photos show the gadget that gathers the readings from my panels and from my electricity meter.

Isn’t it a pretty gadget  😀  

This first shot was taken when I was producing 1.3 kw more than I was using and the minus sign means I was exporting this amount to the grid for some other person to use. 

A wonderful feeling and one which I can strongly recommend.  It also glows a lovely green colour underneath..



A gentle slowly pulsing mauve colour shows when you are using a small amount of electricity from the grid; 168 watts in this case.


…and this final one is the one you don’t want to see too often. Vibrant red shows when I switch the kettle on and a reading of  2848 watts, all coming from the grid.. Yipes!  but then it was night-time!


Another good side-effect of this gadget is that it makes you much more aware of how much electricity you are using, which can only be a good thing..

I wonder when the joy of producing my own electricity will wear off ?

Maybe never  ?

As ever I welcome your thoughts .


Saturday girl signing off.


You can find my photography blog Photomania here 


These are not my images or my feet  😉

11 comments on “I am becoming a Solar Power Nerd !! Proud of it too !!

  1. […] I am becoming a Solar Power Nerd !! Proud of it too !! […]

  2. scillagrace says:

    This is fantastic! I wonder as I’m running guests on the Energy Wheel at the museum what kind of dent we make using good old fashioned muscle energy. The Human Hamster Wheel, as it’s often nicknamed, seems to require a lot of muscle energy to make a little light….but think what might happen if we converted all the energy cycle-ers and joggers and exercise fanatics generate and hooked it onto an electric system. Anyway, keep smiling, Helen!

  3. Pranav Lal says:


    How much power can the pannels produce? What is your setup? I assume you have pannels and some kind of inverter and a bank of batteries?

    • Helen Cherry says:

      Yes an Inverter but no batteries Pranav you either use the electricity or it gets exported to the grid.. but I get paid either way 😀 There are 10 panels and the system is 3.3 Kw and how much depends on how much light there is and how much heat.. they prefer cool and bright and start to lose some effectiveness above 25 degrees . The most I have produced so far has been 16.48 KWh on Sunday when it was sunny all day but the light was gone by 5.30 ( well in terms of producing electricity ) so a long birght day, say in June would probably do 20 or more..

  4. Marleen Vervoort says:

    pretty amazing gadgetry. Must give you a really good “feel good” feeling. Are they photovoltaic panels or the water filled ones?

  5. Meho says:

    Good thing! Congrats!

  6. mary says:

    AS ALWAYS HELEN YOU ARE AN INSPIRATION 🙂 well done very enlightening :)))

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