Saturday, 22 April 2017

A sale in Chase BC

A big congratulations to our sales team in Kamloops. They sold a beautiful, high powered solar array made of a whopping 48 modules to a new client in Chase BC. This array uses 72 cell, 315 Watt modules coupled with Enphase M250 micro-inverters. It will be spread across two barn roofs. 




This is how solar works in Kamloops

Our new solar arrays in Kamloops are performing extremely well. Here are some diagnostics from an array with 16 modules from today. This array generated close to 30 kWh with around 1.9 kWh/module. To put that in perspective, 30 kWh is enough to drive an electric car 180km, to run 15 computers for 24 hours straight, or to keep lit 20 60 Watt light bulbs running for 24 hours. OR to power the average BC house for the day with everything.




Monday, 17 April 2017

Earth Day (April 22): Learn how to make and use solar cookers

Michael from Sweet Spot Solar is working with a team of volunteers to hold a special solar cooking workshop on Earth Day. This event is being held under the auspices of the Kamloops Chapter of the BC Sustainable Energy Association. To learn more and to register click here.

Talk on solar power in Kamloops on April 19, 2017

Michael from Sweet Spot Solar will be be a speaker at the Big Little Science Centre in Kamloops this Wednesday at 7PM.

Science Centre Lecture Series at the BIG Little Science Centre, free entry
Doors open at 6:30pm, lecture at 7pm. For older children and adults. Refreshments served.
Solar Power in the 21st Century: Roads, Planes, Buildings and Fields

Dr. Michael Mehta, Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at Thompson Rivers University

Dr. Mehta will review the current state of solar power, discuss various applications, and profile Canada’s first solar road which is being built here in Kamloops on the campus of TRU. In British Columbia we have very good solar conditions, and in the interior our 2000 hours per year of sunlight surpass solar powerhouse nations, like Germany, by 25%. Many people are surprised to learn that even coastal communities like Vancouver and Vancouver Island do indeed work well with solar. Solar power is changing the world of energy production, and people and governments are beginning to take notice.

FREE ENTRY! Everyone is invited to attend. Wheelchair accessible. The BIG Little Science Centre is a not-for-profit, registered charity, dedicated to creating a passion for science.

For more information please contact Susan Hammond: susan@blscs.org, or call 250-554-2572.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Partial and full DIY options work for us too

A new record low in installed solar made possible by Sweet Spot Solar. By doing some of the work themselves, this family saved around $2000 on the installation. The total cost they paid was $11,100. This works out to a new Sweet Spot Solar record of $2.48/Watt installed!



Saturday, 15 April 2017

Sarah and Tim's new array in the North Shore area of Kamloops

Sarah and Tim finished installing their roof-mounted solar array this weekend. This powerhouse is composed of 16 280 Watt monocrystalline modules made by Canadian Solar coupled with Enphase M-250 micro-inverters.

They did most of the installation themselves and brought in one of our recommended electricians to make the final interconnection to their breaker box and to bond the rails and equipment.

Here's the happy team and their new array.



Monday, 10 April 2017

New Sweet Spot Solar ad

The following ad is appearing in Kamloops This Week on April 11, 2017.


Sunday, 9 April 2017

Solar modules can be gorgeous

Solar modules like this beauty from Canadian manufacturer Silfab can be a stunning and a functional addition to any home or business. This module is a bifacial rated at 285 Watts - it makes power on both sides by taking advantage of the albedo effect. To us, this module looks like a carefully cut and polished jewel. It will adorn our big tracker in Black Pines near Kamloops. You are looking at the underside.



An all-female electrical crew on our Kamloops tracker project and another array coming together

It's been a very busy weekend for Sweet Spot Solar projects. Electrician Amie Schellenberg and her assistant Jenn got done today wiring and breaker panel work for our big tracker project in Black Pines, and our client Tim and Sarah have the rail kit up and ready for module installation.





Saturday, 8 April 2017

Another new solar array in Kamloops

A new grid-tie solar array composed of 14 Canadian Solar 280 Watt monocrystalline modules and Enphase M-250 micro-inverters has been installed in the Westsyde area of Kamloops!


Friday, 7 April 2017

A slick new solar array graces the roof of this house in Rayleigh in Kamloops

Here's our newest solar array in Rayleigh (on the outskirts of Kamloops). This array is composed of 16 Canadian Solar 280 Watt black framed modules and Enphase M-250 micro-inverters.





Here's the owner Ken in the middle with Michael (left) and electrician Steve (right).



Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Dual Axis Tracker Project in Kamloops

Updated: July 23, 2017

The largest dual axis solar tracker is being installed in the Kamloops region right now. This tracker will follow the Sun throughout the day and change tilt to maximize power production. A dual axis tracker can produce 40% more electricity per year than a static or fixed array. This is what are we building. It is made in Ontario by Sentinel Solar and goes by the name Sentry.




This tracker will hold 45 Silfab 280 Watt bifacial modules. These modules are made in Canada. Bifacial modules are semi-transparent and capture solar energy on the flip side too by taking advantage of the albedo effect. The nameplate rating is 12.6 kW. The array uses high-efficiency micro-inverters made by Enphase.

The project is being installed on Westsyde Road in Black Pines. It is big! Here's the truck that delivered the equipment on Monday.


The foundation work is also massive and composed of concrete and lots of rebar. Engineering of the foundation was required. This photo will give you an idea of how this tracker will be fastened onto the ground.


We estimate that this tracker will make over 25,000 kWh/year of power. To get all of that juice to the house of our client, serious wire is needed.


Assembly of the tower and supports will start soon, and a video of the process can be seen here.


The foundation work has now been poured.



Amie Schellenberg and her husband Ryan of Lodgepole Electrical finished mounting today the 45 Silfab bifacial modules and micro-inverters onto our big dual axis tracker project in Black Pines BC. A crane will lift this onto the base as one piece.



The modules and inverters are now wired and the tracker is ready for the big crane lift.



Sweet Spot Solar CEO Michael and electrician Amie Schellenberg were on-site today.





Here's what the tracker looks like when mounted. A few more adjustments are needed and some fine tuning of the communications system and this baby will begin making power.







This tracker is a powerhouse! For example, by 11:15AM on July 23 it had already produced more than 30 kWh for the day which is enough to power an average house for an entire day.



Monday, 3 April 2017

More on solar roads and "smart" infrastructure

Michael from Sweet Spot Solar is a guest this morning at 6:35AM on CBC's Daybreak South show with Chris Walker in Kelowna. He'll be talking about Canada's first solar road and "smart" infrastructure. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/programs/daybreaksouth

Friday, 31 March 2017

Sweet Spot Solar radio ads on Radio NL throughout the month of April

Sweet Spot Solar would like to thank all of our clients and prospective clients for helping us put together two 15 second radio ads to be played on Radio NL. We appreciate your feedback and suggestions on what elements to include. These ads will play throughout the month of April 2017 in Kamloops and the interior of British Columbia.

Ad #1: "It's time to go solar"

Ad #2: "Solarize your future"


Thursday, 30 March 2017

A perfect solar day in March!

Check out this almost perfect solar day from one of our arrays on Gabriola Island. A bell curve is what we like to see, and when a medium-sized residential array produces 45 kWh in one day in March, we are smiling ear-to-ear.



EcoFoot Racking For Flat Roofs

Sweet Spot Solar is excited to offer our clients another low-cost, high-quality option for mounting solar modules on flat roofs. Check out the EcoFoot!

It uses no rails, is quick to assemble, requires less ballast to hold it down, and the shipping cost is lower too. We should probably also say that it costs around 20% less than any other approach.

Here's a nice video showing it all comes together.



Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Sweet Spot Solar is on Radio NL on March 29

Listen to Michael, the owner of Sweet Spot Solar, talk about solar power on the Jim Harrison Show on Radio NL (Kamloops) live at 9:40AM tomorrow (Wednesday). The live stream is at http://www.radionl.com/

If you missed the live show, a podcast can be found here.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Solar modules can power directly DC fans for ventilation purposes

If you have a greenhouse or other large space and need ventilation, the most cost-effective way is to pair solar modules directly to brushless DC motor fans. There is no need for inverters, batteries, or much else other than some wire to connect together the modules and fans. Here's an example of a 16 inch fan that would work very well with a low-cost 265 Watt solar module.



Wednesday, 22 March 2017

$2.75/W installed cost is a record breaker - A Kamloops project

Sweet Spot Solar has just set a new benchmark that will be very hard for others to beat. A new array being installed in Kamloops is coming together at $2.75/Watt! This 4.6 kW array is roof mounted on shingles, uses monocrystalline 280W modules by Canadian Solar, high-quality Enphase M250 micro-inverters, and an Envoy communications gateway. All of the equipment came in at $10,000 from our sales in January and February, and the installation will be $3000. The industry average in BC is still north of $4/Watt.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Would you like a solar powered carport to charge an electric car?

Updated April 4, 2017:

Would you like something similar to this to charge your electric car and to provide power to your house? We are looking for clients interested in pioneering this approach with us. Contact Michael by email at michael@sweetspotsolar.com





Solar power and electric vehicles are a match made in heaven. Why not use a solar array to send power into your house and into your car's batteries? You will be driving on sunshine!

Sweet Spot Solar is looking for a client in the Kamloops area who is interested in a novel and mutually beneficial project.

On August 12, 2017, a special night called Hot Nite in the City will be held where people showcase a range of vehicles. A group is putting together a special display of electric cars for this event.

Here's the proposal: If a client would like an electric car charging station powered by solar modules, we will work with you and local carpenters to make something beautiful and functional.

Here's the catch: Before this gets installed at your property, we would like to showcase this charging station at Hot Nites in the City.

Here's the bait: Sweet Spot Solar will sell you the photovoltaic equipment including modules and inverters at-cost!

For more information, contact Michael at michael@sweetspotsolar.com


Monday, 20 March 2017

The Downside Of Solar

Here's the only negative thing about solar. With a large enough solar array, you can neutralize your electricity bill and even create a credit. These graphs are from one of our arrays composed of 18 solar modules on a 2100 square foot house. Since mid-February, this array began to noticeably decrease the daily power consumption. Yesterday the overall consumption for the house was 2 kWh. Note how the solar array created a credit between 10-4 that was applied immediately to reduce the overall daily figure.





Tuesday, 14 March 2017

A power plant installed onto your garage on Gabriola Island

Why have just a garage when you can have a solar power plant? This project used 28 high-output solar modules to produce annually around 10,000 kWh/year of electricity! Here are before and after photos.




Sunday, 12 March 2017

Ad: How Much Does Solar Cost?

The following ad is coming out on Tuesday March 14 2017 in Kamloops This Week.



Help Us Design A 15 Second Radio Commercial

Sweet Spot Solar can you use your help. We are putting together a 15 second radio commercial to be aired throughout the month of April on RadioNL in Kamloops and region. What key message or two should we focus on? Any suggestions for wording, sounds, style and tone would be very much appreciated. We can be reached at info@sweetspotsolar.com

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Solar-Powered Car Charging Station Or Solar Pergola

Sweet Spot Solar tries to push the frontiers of aesthetically-pleasing and functional design. We would love to work with local carpenters and electricians to make something like this for either a solar-powered car charging station or a solar-powered pergola. Let us know if you would like to purchase something like this, and we'll begin the process.


Ground Mounted Solar On A Trailer - The Ultimate In Mobile Grid-Tie

With our highly mobile society, a lot of people raise concerns about not knowing how long they might live in their current home. And for renters the prospect of permanently mounting solar modules on a roof is a poor option. Here's a novel and portable solution that let's you have solar-on-the-go and it can be connected to a grid-tie approach. 
This trailer is carrying 14 solar modules, and with 265 Watt modules you would have a 3.71 kW array that makes 4450 kWh/year. The solar equipment would cost around than $8500 but you would need your own trailer and hire someone to do some simple welding to make the array's frame. A trailer with a bed of 24' will work.




Thursday, 23 February 2017

Have you considered a ground mounting option for solar?

Ground mounted solar is an excellent option for property owners for a range of reasons. If your roof is older or perhaps unsuitable due to angles, shape and size, a ground array can solve those problems. A ground array is also scalable and you can start small and go to several hundred modules based on need, interest and finances.

You can also position them on your property to act as wind breaks, fences, or to block out things nearby that you would prefer not to look at. They are easier to maintain, and you can also disassemble them and take them somewhere else if you decide to move.

We offer various size options. For the average house in BC, a ground mount with 40 modules (two rows of 20 in portrait mode) will neutralize 100% of your utility bill. This larger ground mount is approximately 67' long.


Monday, 13 February 2017

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Solar is for all ages

Ian and his wife Audrey took delivery this week of their new solar array. This 14 module system will grace the southern side of their roof in the Westsyde area of Kamloops, and should be up and running once the snow has melted.
At 84 years old you would wonder why I’m going solar? Do I really, honestly, believe that I’ll live long enough to break even on the investment? No. But my children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren - - - and neighbours will realize that I’ve done my best to leave them a message of  sustainability. Hopefully they, in turn, will leave similar messages that will contribute a little more to the planet’s health. Even from an economic point of view, should the Site C hydro dam go through, those with foresight will realize that the only way to lessen their soaring hydro bills is to become as energy independent as possible. 
- Ian





A new solar array is coming to Rayleigh

Congratulations to Noreen and Ken for their new stack of solar modules. Ken and their son Ryan took delivery today. They purchased 17 Canadian Solar 280 Watt monocrystalline modules with a matte black frame finish. They plan to purchase the balance of the system including inverters and mounting kit soon. This will be one of only a handful of solar systems in their area just north of Kamloops.

We feel that it is our duty as global citizens to take an active role in reducing our own carbon footprint, and purchasing a solar array is a part of that process. Dr. Michael Mehta has guided us through the purchase and design of our solar system, demonstrating how this can be more attainable for the average home owner. It is one of many elements of our lifestyle that we believe will make a difference in carbon reduction.

- Noreen and Ken 


Congratulations to Sarah and Tim

Sarah and Tim of North Kamloops are the proud owners of a new solar array. Their 16 module system arrived today. It is composed of Canadian Solar 280 Watt monocrystalline modules, Enphase M250 micro-inverters and cabling, an aluminum rail kit with flashing and parts for mounting on a shingle roof, and an Envoy communication gateway to get realtime data on their arrays performance.

About 8 years ago we put in a high efficiency furnace, an on-demand tankless hot water heater and a heat pump. We wanted to reduce our carbon footprint. As a result of this our natural gas bill decreased dramatically (less than 1/4).  Now we are getting close to retirement and we want to have our hydro bill as low as we can get it. To help us  reach this goal we decided to install solar panels. It feels great to  lower our demand for electricity from B.C. Hydro in ways that are not destructive to the environment. 
- Tim and Sarah




Monday, 23 January 2017

A big tracker is coming to the Kamloops area

Last week Sweet Spot Solar sold equipment for three new rooftop arrays. This week we are thrilled to have sold this incredible two axis tracker to a family in Kamloops. This tracker will be constructed using bifacial modules made by Canadian company Silfab, and it is expected to produce around 22,000 kWh/year of electricity.The bifacial modules capture energy from behind by taking advantage of the albedo effect. It is going on an acreage and we expect it to be a landmark to showcase how solar can make a significant impact on our future sustainability.



Friday, 20 January 2017

Solar is coming on like a freight train

Our current sale of modules is now over, and we are thrilled that three new solar arrays will soon find a home on rooftops in Kamloops! Stay tuned for more special offers, but to be frank... There's no need to wait. Sweet Spot Solar's prices are always substantially lower than our competitors. Now is the time to buy solar so that you can take full advantage of the coming sunny days.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Solar arrays are easy and fun to install


Here's an informative video from our supplier of how our most common roof-based array comes together. Behind each module is a super efficient micro-inverter made by Enphase. This converts the DC power from the module into AC for your home, business, etc.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Sale: $180 for Hanwha 265 Watt modules with black frames

We have a new sale on right now for pallets of Hanwha 265 Watt modules with black frames. Orders must be for full pallets (32 modules) for this special deal. These high quality modules are being sold at $180 each! Delivery would be in February or March.

This sale is on only for one week and ends January 19.



Thursday, 5 January 2017

Hanwha QCELL 265 Watt Modules With Black Matte Aluminum Frame

Sweet Spot Solar just received a sample of a high-quality solar module made by Hanwha. These modules are made in Korea by one of the world's leading solar companies, and this model (the 265W QCELL) is an excellent performer. They come with a sleek matte finish black frame.

We can bring these in from our Calgary warehouse in usually less than a week.