Here’s how much money I saved with the mini solar system

In June 2021 I put my mini solar system into operation and since then I have been producing energy with the help of the sun, which I could use directly in my apartment and therefore did not have to buy. In this article I will tell you how much energy I have produced, used myself and therefore really saved.

This article is part of the GIGA theme week “Sustainability” from 5.6. until 11.6.2022. In the overview article you can read what it is and find other pieces on the subject.

Mini solar plant: 1 year of balcony power plant

A mini plug-in solar system is an easy way to produce your own energy that you use directly. If you produce more, you will not be remunerated for it, as there is a simplified approval for such systems. I have summarized what needs to be considered here. But how much power did my 600-watt system actually produce and how much money did I save with it? Let’s take a look at the Yield from June 2021 through May 2022 inclusive – exactly 12 months.

Since I have a FritzBox, I used the AVM FRITZ! DECT 210 smart outdoor socket (see Amazon) to measure the energy flow. So it looks like this:

Here is how much energy my mini solar plant produced in 12 months. (Image Source: GIGA)

The individual months at a glance

  • June 2021: 45 kWh
  • July 2021: 49 kWh
  • August 2021: 42 kWh
  • September 2021: 32 kWh
  • October 2021: 22 kWh
  • November 2021: 8.8 kWh
  • December 2021: 3.1 kWh
  • January 2022: 5.1 kWh
  • February 2022: 15 kWh
  • March 2022: 43 kWh
  • April 2022: 62 kWh
  • May 2022: 67 kWh
  • In total: 394 kWh

Of the 394 kWh produced by my balcony power plant, I have 339 kWh actually consumed. I have not used 55 kWh and have given them to my network operator. You can use the 2-way electricity meter to see how much energy you have fed into the grid. You don’t get any compensation for this with a mini solar system.

I have really saved so much money

One kWh currently costs me about 30 cents. So I have 101.70 euros saved on electricity costs. My system costs 800 euros. After eight years, the system would be self-financing and, with a useful life of around 25 years, would continue to produce electricity for another 17 years for free. If electricity prices continue to rise, my balcony power plant will pay for itself much sooner. In any case, you make a lot of money in the long run. And I’m not making full use of the potential, as you can read below.

View balcony power plants on eBay

The first cars are equipped with solar cells:

Team: Economical solar electric car presented

Important details about my solar system

From June 2021 to March 2022, my solar system was on the ground and was often in the shade. Since I hung the solar panels (see title photo), the yield in April and May 2022 has been much better. So I expect even more returns in the next 12 months. From October to February, the sun doesn’t shine enough to produce a lot of energy. The sun is low there and there is also a large tree in my way, the shadow of which falls on the solar panels around 3pm. So, if you don’t have shadows, you can obviously make better use of the sunshine hours.

This is the most important lesson for me: it is extremely important to correctly align the balcony power station. The more sun you capture and then actually use the energy, the more useful such a system is. But even if the conditions aren’t as ideal as mine, a mini plug-in solar system is worth it. You just have to have the (right) place for it.

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