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Alex Simmons

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Alex Simmons last won the day on March 16 2018

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About Alex Simmons

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    Transitions Legend!

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    Bellingen, NSW

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  • Year of first Tri race?

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  1. When I get noises while using trainer I have to sort out if it's coming from something on the bike, the trainer or my leg... Recently I was getting an annoying metallic-sounding creak each pedal stroke. Required a change of angles of my leg, which changed the way the cleat interfaced with the pedal. Creak gone.
  2. Yeah, it can be a little tricky to work out. It is in their help guide but as you say, it could be more user friendly. Yes it will vary for everyone, and it will vary depending upon time of year. The other thing to assess are any differences in any other fees and charges. e.g. for me the daily fee would be different. Of course it requires identifying the right TOU plan for your energy use patterns to begin with. By splitting the energy import data into TOU period totals, then you can plug that info along with export info into the comparison engine of this site: https://wattever.com.au/ It's pretty good, although I suggest filtering out all the small fry or unknown players from search results. Quite a few bait and switch providers that suck you in with cheap rates then raise them soon after. If your off-peak or controlled load tariff is line ball with your feed in tariff (FIT), then yep it's financially better to load shift to import during those times rather than self consume. If adding a controlled load circuit (normally reserved for specific hard wired appliances such as hot water, pool pumps) then comparison also needs to account for the extra daily fee for having a CL. That means the CL tariff needs to be about 2c/kWh less (give or take) than the FIT for it to make sense. In my case my FIT is 2.5c/kWh higher than my CL tariff, so there is no point in me switching my hot water system over to using excess solar production.
  3. After 6 months, this is the analysis for us: A TOU plan would have been $243 cheaper for this period, a saving of $1.34/day on average. Adding a battery would be a big fat waste of money.
  4. I have one for myself. It's part of my "virtual battery" model. The issue is reprogramming it for the TOU periods which apply to your service area. The TOU periods differ by distributor and the TOU periods can also change by season in some areas. Since my sheet is set for my local distribution area and TOU periods, whether it can be quickly augmented for a different distribution area and TOU periods depends on whether the TOU periods represent a simple or a more complex change. e.g. if you are Ausgrid then it'd require a different programming approach as the TOU periods have seasonal variations. There are other ways: you can set Fronius Solarweb to have TOU tariff settings for calculation of ROI data. It'd mean manually adjusting tariffs to see the difference TOU rates has on the ROI figures by first making them all the same flat rate, then by changing them to the TOU rates. programming the inverter to auto upload your data to PVOutput.org and applying TOU settings within PVO, which can then display the data broken into TOU periods. It's not a perfect solution by any stretch for various reasons but it is one way to get such data to do these sort of comparisons. This latter approach can provide data either as a chart or in data table: With this data calculating the difference between flat rate and TOU plans would be fairly trivial. PVO also provides the ability to create and save different energy tariff profiles, which you can load to simulate impact of different tariffs. If you want to go the PVO route (the basic service is free), you'd need to become a donor (I guess it's $10-$20 / year) to unlock the more sophisticated options such as the above. It isn't the easiest thing to set up but can be a useful alternative archive location for your data.
  5. Nearly halving your power bill. Nice going for this time of year. I notice I am getting a bit of production drop due to shading from the jacaranda trees along the north side of house as the sun is lower in the sky. Might look to give them another haircut for next season. Still putting out over 30kWh on sunny days though.
  6. Yes, although it's a much broader set of skills than a bit of BS detection. Others include, inter alia, logical reasoning, understanding and being able to identify logical fallacies as well as your own personal biases. These require training, and the latter in particular is quite difficult to work on.
  7. Critical thinking skills are not taught in our society.
  8. Got my latest quarterly bill today. My bill estimate based on my own data was less than 0.2% different to the actual bill. This is for the late-summer quarter which is traditionally our highest cost quarter. Compared to the same quarter for the two previous years, the saving is ~$1,000.
  9. When I get noises on the trainer, I have to work out if it's the trainer, the bike or my leg.... Not always so easy to nail down!
  10. Not much of a binge viewer but thinking back to earliest.... I, Claudius
  11. Sprung! Thought I'd share it here. When I went back through old threads, there have been people trying to reconcile differences between what they are being billed for and what their own meters have been telling them. So thought I'd share my own experience to date. I used that name as it's the name of my cycling blog. Maybe I should write a solar PV blog!
  12. I just compared the difference between the distributor's meter readings and those reported via Solarweb (supplied by the inverter's datalogger which receives data from my Fronius meter). 140 days of data. Export the difference was just 0.09% (2.47kWh). An insignificant variance. Import the difference was 0.82% (30.69kWh). The bulk of the small import difference was due to periods when the inverter was off and the inverter's data logger is not recording / sending data. We had 2 days of grid outages before Christmas following a big storm, power was on/off at times while the grid was being fixed. I turned the inverter off until I was sure the grid was stable again. This one event account for half of the discrepancy. There would have been a few other occasions the inverter was off and missed uploading some grid import data. As a result I'm very confident in the accuracy of my Fronius meter data.
  13. That's a pretty quick turnaround. Have to be happy with that. Make sure you have shut down the system before they turn up. I know you will know how already but just in case, there will be a specific protocol for shut down and restart. Usually it's turn inverter off first at the switchboard, then turn off the DC lines from the panels. Restart is the reverse order.
  14. These shopping centre charger stations will be the equivalent of today's "shop a docket" 5c/litre off your petrol. The idea being where will you prefer to shop if the choice is to be able to plug your car in and not being able to plug your car in?
  15. I am also tracking the difference between best flat rate and the best TOU plans given I have a solar PV system. Even though solar does not produce much power during peak hours, the TOU plan is looking like a good option for us. On average over these past 145 days the TOU plan would have been $1.53/day cheaper. I'm going to see how it holds up through winter as the gap should narrow (due to peak period evening heating costs). But I suspect the difference won't go down a lot. If that's the case then I'll request a change to a TOU plan from 1 July. It represents ~$500/year saving just by moving to TOU.
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