Meet John Goodfellow - husband, guitar collector, Floridian, and executive director at Saint Petersburgh College who became a solar enthusiast. As a resident of the sunshine state, it was really only a matter of time before John developed an interest in solar power for his home. He started with research, scouring forums, reviewing specification sheets, and subscribing to popular solar YouTube channels; all so that he could learn how to design his own system, wire the components, and handle maintenance.
After researching, John decided to take the plunge into solar power by purchasing a set of batteries and an inverter. He quickly realized that the lack of simple communication between the products made it difficult to maintain and optimize his system. He coined the term, “energy anxiety,” the feeling of knowing that your energy supply is limited. He used to worry about his wife using the hair dryer, or whether they were watching TV too late at night.
He continued searching for a better solution and eventually discovered Signature Solar and the EG4 product line.
Some Insight into John’s Solar Journey
It can be daunting to find a sustainable and cost-effective way to power your daily life. For John, finding the solution was critical. In just 18 months, his electric company announced four rate increases, leaving his bill at nearly $300 per month. “It’s like the bill keeps going up and up and up,” he lamented.
In early 2021 John was contacted by a door-to-door solar company; they seemed to understand his concerns over utility rate hikes and promised to alleviate his troubles. However, the company offered John a net-metered system that did not allow him to retain any of the energy his system produced; the company also included a clause that gave them right to modify the reimbursement rate at will and quoted a system that would cost him more than $60,000. Disappointed with this option, John decided to tackle the challenge himself.
Designing a solar power system can be a complicated process, particularly when it comes to system communications. For DIYers like John, the challenge is even greater since many products are not designed to integrate with each other, making system monitoring, management, and troubleshooting a difficult task. The primary culprit for this lack of integration is the battery management system (BMS).
Enter EG4 & Signature Solar
Despite his best efforts, John struggled to establish communication between his initial inverter and various BMSs during his early attempts. The frustration was palpable, and he recalls spending countless hours on this endeavor. However, after purchasing his EG4 system, John was pleasantly surprised to find that communication was a breeze, and the system has been running smoothly ever since. “I can’t express how relieved I was when the communication worked,” John explains. “It was a stark contrast to my previous experience.”
Additionally, John took a proactive approach and incorporated contingencies into his system design, enabling him to access power from other sources, such as switching back to the grid or a generator temporarily, in case his system stops functioning. Despite his meticulous planning, John eventually encountered a problem that required professional help, so he powered off his system until he could solve the issue.
John promptly reached out to Signature Solar’s tech support team, explaining to them that he had encountered an error code that he could not resolve. After reviewing his request, Hannah, a member of the support team, responded and requested additional information to aid in diagnosing and resolving the issue accurately. Together, John and Hannah were able to come to a resolution. Since then, he has remained in touch with Hannah to stay ahead of any other issues that may arise.
From Frustration to Satisfaction: Finally, a System That Works!
In the end, John wound up purchasing his entire system from Signature Solar, including his solar panels, inverter, batteries, rack, mounting system, and rails. He credits Signature Solar’s integrated system design, superior engineering, and professional customer support for the seamless and reliable operation of his current setup. After struggling with the previous system for 18 months due to a lack of communication, John was ecstatic when the BMS of his EG4 battery bank came on immediately and displayed that it was working properly. “The battery turned on, displaying the state of charge, and everything was correct.”
Without all the struggle, John actually enjoyed putting everything together. He keeps the entire system in an enclosure that his wife calls the solar closet, and when he opens those doors, John sees a system that functions exactly as intended. John’s “energy anxiety,” is gone; now he knows that his EG4 system provides enough backup storage to supply his entire home with power for three days, even with no sun.
Not only was John able to get all the components for a reliable system in one place, but he has also seen a direct cut in his electric bill. Before going solar, he was paying nearly $300 a month, and watching the bill continue to rise unchecked. Now, he pays $70 dollars a month for his electric bill at most, and he owns his entire system. “Since I got the LL batteries, I’ve cut my monthly electric bills by 75%,” he says.
Here’s To a Brighter Future Together, John!
John’s journey to finding a sustainable energy solution was not easy, but thanks to Signature Solar and the EG4 line of products, he was able to design and build a system that he can rely on well into retirement.
With high-quality components, simple system communication, and superior customer support, he now has a solar power system that just works, without any hassle. With the right products and support, anyone can become a solar enthusiast and take control of their energy to empower their future!
Want to manage your own energy anxiety? Contact Signature Solar today!