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Lead-acid vs lithium-ion battery Comparison

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The lead-acid battery has been around for over 100 years that costs less, requires regular maintenance to keep them working properly and doesn’t last as long.

Lithium-ion battery relatively newer technology with a longer lifespan, high power density, higher efficiency, does not require regular maintenance but costs more.

Both technologies are affected by discharge cycles, Lithium-ion has a significantly higher cycle life than lead-acid in deep discharge applications such as in solar. This disparity is further increased as ambient temperatures increase.

The cycle life of both chemistries can be increased by limiting the depth of discharge (DoD), discharge rate, and temperature, but lead-acid is generally much more sensitive to each of these factors.

In hot climates where the average temperature is 33°C, the disparity between lithium-ion and lead-acid is further increased. The cycle life for lead-acid (flooded and VRLA) drops to 50% of its moderate climate rating while lithium-ion will remain stable until temperatures routinely exceed 49°C.

Another critical consideration for lead-acid is how long the system will take to discharge. The shorter the discharge period, the less capacity is available from the lead-acid battery. A 200Ah lead-acid battery will only deliver 120Ah if discharged over a one hour period. In contrast, a 200Ah lithium-ion battery system will achieve over 184Ah. This condition makes lithium-ion very well suited for applications where full discharge occurs in less than eight hours.

  Flooded
lead-acid
VRLA
lead-acid
Lithium-ion (LiNCM)
Energy Density (Wh/L) 80 100 250
Specific Energy (Wh/kg) 30 40 150
Regular Maintenance Yes No No
Initial Cost ($/kWh) – prices are only a market average and estimate   65   120   600
Cycle Life 1,200 @ 50% 1,000 @ 50% DoD 1,900 @ 80% DoD
Typical state of charge window   50%   50%   80%
Temperature sensitivity Degrades significantly
above 25°C
Degrades significantly
above 25°C
Degrades significantly
above 45°C
Efficiency 100% @20-hr rate
80% @4-hr rate
60% @1-hr rate
100% @20-hr rate
80% @4-hr rate
60% @1-hr rate
100% @20-hr rate
99% @4-hr rate
92% @1-hr rate

ENERGY STORAGE PROVIDES RESILIENCY AND SECURITY

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With extreme weather events and other threats to energy security increasing homeowners and businesses are contending with the danger of losing access to reliable power supplies. Beyond emergency scenarios, unexpected blackouts during day and nights also increasing in numbers and durations.

It is estimated an hour of energy downtime costs companies from thousands of dollars for small companies to millions for large companies. Homeowners are also exposed to economic losses, which can be further worsened by dangers to family health and safety. Energy can storage plays a central role in the design of reliable backup and emergency power systems that protect homes and business operations when power is intermittent or completely unavailable.

According to the needs and affordability, homeowners can choose a backup system to back up critical loads like the refrigerator, a home medical device, a computer, cell phone charging, lights and the HVAC system using a subpanel, or entire home load using large battery bank. Many businesses also require back up of mission-critical systems such as servers, payment systems, refrigeration, and communications. Depending on their operations some businesses may need power for critical power for multiple days.

For customers who already have a diesel generator for backup power, integrating storage with generators reduce the number of hours generator need to run and the gallons of fuel they need to burn. In this scenario, the generator becomes a battery charging supply rather than a primary power source. Optimizing generator operation this way delivers a 50-80% savings in fuel and dramatically reduces noise, toxic pollution and increase energy security.

Among the battery technologies, Lithium-Iron Phosphate (LFP) have high efficiency, safety rating and low levels of self-discharge over time. This can play a key role in cutting diesel consumption by storing energy for a longer duration without degrading or losing power until that time that an end-user needs it.

Solar customers also benefit from storage during the plan and unplanned grid outages. Rather than shutting down the inverter when the grid goes down, batteries and the inverter charger enable homes and businesses with PV systems to ‘island’ from the grid and retain access to their own generation by creating a mini-microgrid for as long as the grid is unavailable. Depending on the requirements, battery banks can be sized to keep homes and businesses up and running safely and securely over the course of multiple days.

If you are thinking how much it would cost to have peace of mind with a storage system for your needs complete the Free solar Assessment request at our website or give us a call at 416-855-9377. We are one of the top solar energy companies providing solutions that are second to none. We provide solar plus storage hybrid energy solutions across Ontario including Toronto, Markham, Mississauga, Burlington, Oakville, Brampton, Vaughan, Ajax, Pickering, Whitby, Oshawa, Caledon, Stouffville, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora, Milton, Georgetown, and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Ways to reduce your energy costs

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You may not think much about your electric bill payment every month. And if you do, you might think that is just the cost of living / doing business, right? Not exactly. Take a moment to think the energy you are likely paying for that room in your home/office no one ever uses, and you’ll definitely want to learn how to avoid these to reduce your energy costs.

By following simple steps to increase the energy efficiency at your businesses, you can lower your electric bill by hundreds to thousands of dollars every month. Here are a few simple changes you can make that can add up to short-term and long-term energy savings.

1.            Get an energy audit

Energy audits can help you figure out where your money is going every month, how to increase energy efficiency and how to lower electric bills.

2.            When not in use, turn off lights and equipment

This sounds very obvious, but you will be surprised to know many people do not do this and the amount of energy all those computers, monitors, printers and other devices consume while sitting there unused but still left on. By making sure they are in “sleep mode” or turned off completely overnight, you will not be paying for electricity you are not even using. One tip is to plug all these energy hogs into a single power bar, so you can turn them off at the same time on your way out the door. Also, make it someone’s nightly routine to take a quick tour of the offices and flip the OFF switch on idle equipment.

3.            Take advantage of natural sunlight as often as you can

Let the sunshine in! Open the blinds around to make the best use of daylight—and take advantage of skylights or other natural light sources to reduce your lighting needs during daytime hours.

4.            Install long-lasting  LED bulbs

Replacing a single 60-watt incandescent bulb with an 8-watt energy-efficient bulb that is on for 10 hours a day can easily save a $1 or more each month. Multiply that out to an entire year—and by the hundreds (if not thousands) of bulbs in your business—and you’re talking about some serious savings. LED light bulbs not only use at least 75% less energy, and they also last 50 times longer than the average incandescent—up to 20 years – reduce the maintenance cost.

5.            Use motion detectors and automatic dimmers that adjust to your needs

Lighting accounts for almost 20% of the electricity used in U.S. commercial buildings. Hence being a little bit smarter about when, where and how you use the lighting in your building(s) can add up to big savings. Consider installing motion detectors in hallways, meeting spaces and other places where “always-on” isn’t always needed—along with automatic dimming controllers that measure and adjust to the light levels you actually need.

6.            Install programmable thermostats, and use them wisely

A programmable thermostat gives you the power to automatically adjust the temperature of your workplace when no one’s there. Set yours to turn the AC or heat on 30 minutes before people arrive and off 30 to 60 minutes before they leave. In warmer weather months, it’s a good idea to set your thermostat no lower than 78 degrees during office hours in order to reduce energy use. Then, during cooler weather periods, set your thermostat no higher than 68 degrees.

Keeping your office temperature just 1-degree cooler during winters and 1 degree warmer during summers can reduce the power you use by up to 10%!

7.            Keep the heat in or out with screens, film and weather-stripping

While you might think that gentle breeze from your room window isn’t a big deal, it’s really money and energy flying right out the building—and it’s too easy a fix to ignore. Add or replace weather-stripping, caulk or foam around your windows and doors to save energy. Windows also let in the sun’s light and heat, which can make it more expensive to cool your office in warmer weather. Luckily, there are plenty of window treatments that can help you to reduce heat gain and increase energy efficiency, including solar screen window shades, awnings and high-reflectivity window films.

8.            Purchase energy-efficient office equipment

When you need new equipment/appliances, be sure to look for the Energy Star logo. Energy Star-labeled fridges, washers, dryers, computers, monitors, printers, fax machines, scanners and copiers can run much more efficiently and automatically power down during extended inactivity. That can help you save 50% or more in energy use on these power-hungry devices. And, if your old heater or air conditioner is not working at maximum efficiency, it could draw unnecessary power, which also costs you money. Replace any old heaters and AC units with Energy Star models.

9.            Consider alternative and renewable energy sources to help power your business

Using commercial renewable energy sources, such as solar and small wind, to power some or all of your business can help lower your business energy costs over time. Doing so also generates power that’s free of harmful CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases. Based on a number of factors, there may never be a better time to invest in solar (or other sources of clean energy) to get the energy your business needs while paying less over the long term.

10.          Keep your HVAC systems running smoothly

Change the filters on your HVAC equipment regularly, and make sure to have the units inspected and cleaned as often as recommended. Keep the areas in front of all vents clear of furniture and paper. As much as 25% more energy is required to distribute air if your vents are blocked.

If you are wondering how you can reduce your energy cost, we can help you from energy audit to implementing energy efficiency solutions. Request for your Free Energy Consultation at our website or give us a call at 416-855-9377. We are one of the top energy companies providing solutions that are second to none. We provide energy optimization, solar plus storage hybrid energy solutions across Ontario including Markham, Vaughan, Toronto, Mississauga, Burlington, Oakville, Brampton, Ajax, Pickering, Whitby, Oshawa, Caledon, Stouffville, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora, Milton, Georgetown, and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

What does a grid-tie inverter do?

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An inverter is the most critical component of a solar power system. A grid-tie inverter performs many functions than any other component in a solar power system. The functions an inverter need to perform continue to grow as the solar power systems get smarter and increase interaction with the utility grid.

Here the key functions a grid-tied inverter perform

Power conversion from AC – DC
The main function of an inverter is power conversion – convert the direct current (DC) power that solar panels generate to alternating current (AC) power that is normally used in homes and businesses or fed directly into the grid in case of a utility-scale solar power system.

Maximize power generation
Inverters continuously track the solar array’s voltage, current and identify an operation point to generate the maximum power from the solar array.

Interface with the grid
Grid-tied inverters have advanced from one-way communication to two-way communication with the grid and assist with grid-support functions. With advanced software, smart grid-tied inverters can perform grid-supportive functions related to voltage, frequency, communications, and controls.

Monitor the function of the solar power system
Inverters make it possible for solar owners to keep track of the power output of their solar systems. Most inverters have communications capabilities via hardwired ethernet, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Through this communication connectivity data stored in the inverter is uploaded to a monitoring portal which in turn enables solar power system owner, installers to monitor the performance of the solar power system and take appropriate actions proactively.

Ensure safe system operation
An electrical arc can cause fire hazard and material degradation. Grid-tie inverters are programmed to identify these arcs and shut down the inverter to enable safe operation.

Inverters are made up of many electronic components and perform numerous tasks, they are more likely to fail than other components of a PV system. Micro. string and central inverters come with different pros and cons, but string inverters are more easily serviceable when a failure happens.

If you are thinking of what kind of inverter to use with your solar power system and how much it would cost complete the Free solar Assessment request at our website or give us a call at 416-855-9377 we will guide you every step of the way.

We provide solar plus storage hybrid energy solutions across Ontario including Toronto, Markham, Mississauga, Burlington, Oakville, Brampton, Vaughan, Ajax, Pickering, Whitby, Oshawa, Caledon, Stouffville, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora, Milton, Georgetown, and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Solar+Storage

ADDING ENERGY STORAGE TO YOUR EXISTING SOLAR POWER SYSTEM

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Adding a battery to your existing solar power system is not always an easy task. If your solar power system was installed storage-ready, adding the battery could be easy but with the rapid advancements of solar-plus-storage in the last few years, it is unlikely many old solar systems can easily accommodate battery connection. But that does not mean it is impossible; there are just a few important questions you must answer before starting a retrofit solar-plus-storage installation project.

What is your inverters make and model?

The inverter used on an existing solar panel system will dictate how a battery can be added to an existing solar power system. Solar-plus-storage systems are either AC-coupled or DC-coupled. AC-coupled systems require an additional, separate inverter to charge the batteries. DC-coupled systems use a charge controller to feed the power from the solar array to the batteries and then through an inverter for grid-tied use. For example, existing systems with microinverters which make the DC-AC conversion at the panel-level will need an AC-coupled system for storage, since the battery cannot be incorporated into the DC lines before AC-conversion.

To accommodate energy storage in an AC coupled system, existing grid-tie inverters must have frequency control capability. If the existing older inverters cannot frequency shift, they should be replaced to add batteries. Adding new inverter that can regulate charges is the only way to include storage on this type of existing solar PV system. Inverters are usually warrantied to 5 /10 years. If the inverter is approaching its warrantied lifespan, it’s a good idea to upgrade. It may be advantageous to replace the inverter with an inverter designed to accommodate storage to enable options to integrate storage immediately or in the future.

Why do you want to add storage?

Another question to answer – is your storage solution for emergency power? Or to store excess energy produced by solar during the day, so that it can be used in the evening when the sun goes down? Or in places with a TOU tariff, charge the batteries with solar or grid power when rates are cheap and discharge the batteries when power is most expensive. Depending on your objective, it is important to have an inverter that allows for your specific storage need and an appropriately sized battery bank to support your power needs.

Who owns the solar system?

Another question to answer – is your existing solar PV system owned by you or leased?  If you have full ownership adding storage is easy. If your existing solar panel system leased it may have restrictions on adding certain equipment. Typically leased solar power systems have a wide range of restrictions as to what changes can be made to the home or business and its electrical loads. Adding energy storage may be prohibited by lease terms.

If you are thinking of adding energy storage to your existing solar PV system and much it would cost to have peace of mind with a solar plus battery power system complete the Free solar Assessment request at our website or give us a call at 416-855-9377.

We are one of the top solar energy companies providing solutions that are second to none. We provide solar plus storage hybrid energy solutions across Ontario including Toronto, Markham, Mississauga, Burlington, Oakville, Brampton, Vaughan, Ajax, Pickering, Whitby, Oshawa, Caledon, Stouffville, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora, Milton, Georgetown, and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Learn the Top Reasons Why You Should Install Solar Energy Panels

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solar panel.jpg

Solar panels are a great source of energy and they help to reduce energy costs. Solar panels also reduce the environmental impact of your home and provide you with a host of benefits that include supporting local business, making a contribution to energy independence.

Do you want to install panels at your home? Here are the top benefits that you can enjoy:

Reduction in Energy Bills:

Purchasing a solar energy solution from one of the top solar energy companies will ensure you with the best solar panels system. During daytime, these solar panels will produce much more energy than you need for consumption. Rest of the energy can be stored and used at a later time and can become a good source of income.

Protect Yourself from Utility Prices:

The prices of electricity keep fluctuating. Often, it is on the raising end. However, if you choose to use solar panels, you can avoid these fluctuating prices. Thus, it is best to switch to the panels.

Usage of Underutilized Land:

The increasing use of solar power has made non-arable useful. As many non-arable lands around and far away from big cities have not been utilized for productive purposes, they can now be used for implementing solar power systems.

Improves Grid Security:

With more dependence on solar power, we become less likely to come across blackouts and brownouts. With better functioning power plants, there is greater security against human-caused disasters.

Solar energy is the source of clean and pure energy, which can bring a lot of benefits when used appropriately. There are a lot of good things to think about and implement when you bring a natural resource to use. Similar is the case with solar energy. If you want to experience the same benefits you can approach us for suitable solutions. We are one of the top solar energy companies providing solutions that are second to none. We provide energy solutions across Toronto, Markham, Mississauga, Burlington, Oakville, Brampton, Vaughan, Ajax, Pickering, Whitby, Oshawa, Caledon, Stouffville, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Aurora, Milton, Georgetown, and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

HOW SOLAR PLUS STORAGE WORKS

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Advancements in solar technology have made solar systems that are  aesthetically pleasing, more affordable, and customers are given greater energy independence with advancements in battery technologies. With all these developments, there has never been a better time to go solar.

We’re happy to announce that, New Dawn solar energy systems can now be paired with industry leading solar battery storage providers. This allows  our customers  to choose their home battery products that will best meet their energy solution needs.

Our solar energy system generates electricity whenever the sun is shining, often producing more energy than  your house needs during peak seasons. The excess energy is sent to the grid, and the homeowner usually receives a credit from their utility that can offset the electricity used at night and cloudy days. The grid still plays a supporting role. More homeowners are requesting solar-plus-storage option so they can have more control over their solar electricity usage by charging the battery first before sending excess energy to grid. The stored solar energy can be used to complement power from the grid at night or to power essential appliances during a power outage so you are never without power.

Unlike lead acid batteries, lithium ion batteries do not require additional ventilation and only require one third of the amount of space. So  we have the flexibility to place them at any convenient location inside a property.

At this time most solar homeowners will only need a storage battery system when there is a power outage.  A properly sized net metering home solar system is enough to meet a family’s electricity needs, credits earned during sunny days covering any electricity used from the grid in the evening and on winter cloudy days.

While power outages do not routinely impact many households here, a home battery system can provide you with greater peace of mind when it suddenly occurs. Our battery system is quiet and clean alternative to a noisy generator which many home owners think about. If the power does go out, a home battery is designed to keep only essential appliances up and running and will charge with solar power so there aren’t any gas bills associated with a generator. With these advantages, opting for a solar storage battery solution would be the smart decision.

To see if a home solar battery makes sense for you, visit our website and fill out the form, we will get in touch to guide you.

Is Solar Energy A Good Resource for Your Business?

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The utility prices have significantly increased over the years and on the contrary, the cost of purchasing
and installing solar systems has taken a downfall. This has resulted in an increased sale of solar systems.
Not only have the businesses, even the residents considered its use for enjoying long-term benefits. The
technology has become a cost-effective and sustainable source of energy, which is being widely
accepted by people all over. However, there are still many businesses that have not yet been able to
understand how solar energy makes sense to the business.

Given below are two major benefits you get by making a one-time investment and embracing solar
energy:
Cost Savings on Energy
The primary driver to run a business is to have maximum monetary resources available, and a significant
amount of funds are utilized in the utilities. However, if one decides to save on this, they can get huge
help by installing solar systems. In fact, there are systems that are exclusively meant for business
applications and installing these Commercial Solar Solutions in Ontario can turn into good savings.

A Long Term Free Source of Electricity
A lot of businesses do not get the solar panels installed thinking that it is a costly investment to make.
However, there have been various analyses on it and found that a business pays off for about 7-8
years to cover the expenses made for a complete solar systems in Vaughan.

Once this expense is covered, a company enjoys free electricity for about 25 to 35 years, which is a great
deal to make. Also, the systems come with long-term warranties, so the consumer doesn’t have to
worry about the performance. They can easily rely on the products as satisfaction is confirmed.

These are two major advantages of getting commercial solar systems installed. Apart from this, when a
company supports a green business approach, customers see it in a good light. By creating an
environmentally responsible image, they can inspire other companies for taking a similar responsible
step.

Convincing Reasons That Suggest You Should Go Solar

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Switching to solar energy usage isn’t an easy option to take. It will require investment and effort to make this big change. This one change will alter your lifestyle for the entire period that you are going to be alive. If you find it to be a regular change that is taking additional money out of your pocket, then you need to read the convincing reasons below to support the decision of inviting new changes:

Save Money on Energy Use

It might seem to contradict at first because getting a Solar Panel Installation in Ontario will demand a good money investment. However, once it is done, solar power will save you huge bucks. This is because it is unusually cheap to use. In fact, you do not even have to pay the electricity bills anymore. Additionally, there’s more value added to your property and it will serve you good if you plan to sell your home.

No More Dependence on Electricity

As mentioned already, once you switch to using solar panels, your dependency on electricity offered by the utility providers becomes zero. When rest of the society is facing a blackout, you can still light up your house using the energy from the solar panels. As long as the sun rises, you have your source of energy available. The stored amount of solar power keeps you good even on the cloudy days.

It is a Contribution to the Environment

Going solar is one of the steps that you can take to help Mother Nature preserve itself. When most of the advancements made are deteriorating the environment, switching to solar energy is one change made in environment-favor.

These compelling reasons support the decision of every resident who wants to switch to solar energy for homes in Ontario and around the world. We at New Dawn Energy Solutions can help you take the right foot in the proceeding.

IS SOLAR PV SYSTEM IN COLD AND SNOWY CLIMATES WORTH THE INVESTMENT?

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One question people often ask is whether purchasing a PV system in cold and snowy climates is worth the investment. With low temperatures and snow, how could a solar power system produce electricity? Though these are reasonable fears, experience has shown that winter solar is not as problematic as it first appears.

Many would be solar panel owners are switched off by the thought that snowfall and cold temperatures reduce the potential output of their solar arrays. While it is true that snow build-up can hamper a panel’s ability to produce, this dip in output is only significant in systems installed on low slope roofs and only during winter months. But the concern about efficiency of panels in the cold temperatures is unfounded. In fact cold temperature improves panel efficiency; PV temperature reduction of about 20°C leads to a 9 to 12% increase in electrical yield.

Even in the case of the low slope roofs snow build up could happen only during the winter months during which sun angle is also low. Due to this solar PV production is lower during winter months regardless of roof slopes. On the other hand sun hours during  summer months are longer compared to tropical locations hence production during our summer months is high compared to other locations.

During winter months snow on the ground tends to reflect the sun’s light back upward. This reflected light, hits angled panels, adding to the direct light from the sun and help to increase energy yields. These two effects in combination can result in higher output from panels on a clear snowy day than the average summer day when one would expect output to be highest.

Even after factoring in the snowy cold winter months, a solar power installation will undoubtedly help curb a consumer’s annual energy bill. With net metering most of potential solar PV system owners can produce the entire amount of electricity they use in a 12 month period from solar regardless of the cold snowy climate in Canada. In fact many of our past customers’ solar PV systems are generating more electricity than they use.

As the storage prices are coming down we have even started working with people who want to opt for off-grid and be entirely free from the grid. As the electricity price increases and aging utility infrastructure become more problematic this number will increase substantially.

At New Dawn Energy Solutions we custom design the best possible solar power systems to suite your needs. We are looking forward to working with you to find the best possible solution for your needs; feel free to contact us at info@newdawn-es.com / 416-855-9377 to see how we can help you to take control of your energy cost.

Phone: 416-855-9377