This guy installed a 15kW (DIY) solar panel system on his roof—was it worth the time, and financial investment?

  • Reese always wanted solar panels. The thing is, he wanted to install it himself.
  • He had three main roadblocks: was it going to be worth it financially? Where would he start from? What if he destroys his roof?
  • He says doing the project himself was very rewarding—but also very challenging. Here's how he did it and what helpful tips he learned along the way.

Reese always wanted to install solar panels on his roof.

The thing is, he wanted to install it himself, and although he knew nothing about how to install solar—he still moved forward with his passion to make his home net-zero.

Reese says doing the project himself was very rewarding but also very challenging.

Such a DIY system presented three main roadblocks:

1. Was the project going to be worth it financially?
2. He had no idea where to start from or whom to ask for directions.
3. Fear. He was afraid of making too many holes on his roof that could cause leaks in the near future.

Reese used a combination of apps on his phone and NREL’s PVWatts Calculator to estimate his roof could hold a 15kW solar panel system that will produce approximately 18,161kWh/year.

Comparing that number with his electric bill for the past three years, Reese could confidently say it was enough to bring his bill down to $0 for the next 25 years, get him a comfortable 5-7 year payback, and an ROI close to 14 percent.

So was it worth it?

Yes! Reese says it was worth it—financially.

Reese, of Frugal Repair, loves to help people learn how to fix things, tackle new projects and save money in the process.

He has been a tinkerer since he was very little, always taking things apart, figuring out how they work, and putting them back together.

He has a degree in Computer Engineering and tends to focus on electrical/computer repairs.

This video was produced and published by FrugalRepair. It was originally published on the “FrugalRepair” YouTube channel.

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