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UK - How I cut my Electric bill with Octopus Energy
#11
Thanks AJ. I was thinking of going down the Arduino route, but I have no experience in either Arduino or Raspberry Pi. Would you say the Raspberry Pi is better than Arduino and why?

I'm currently at the stage of using timers for the inverter to switch on only at 4pm until 7pm and i'm not charging the battery from mains at all. So I am losing out on cloudy days, paying around 25p/kWh when I could have charged up the night before at a fraction of that.

I'd also like to install a few towel radiator elements in my GCH system to add just a little renewable's to my space heating. Same with Water heating when I get a new cylinder. I'd like this to all be controlled autonomously too.  There will be a fair few inputs / outputs.

I love the concept of weather forecast as an input. I looked into this a bit already but i'm not sure what API to go with. Have you looked and decided yet?
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#12
Definitely Raspberry Pi, because it's a full fledged PC with Linux based OS (plenty of other choices), HDMI display output, keyboard mouse, WIFI, LAN, SD card storage, etc. So for example, it's so much easier to download the pricing list from Octopus than on an Arduino. Sending On/Off signals to Wifi Smart Plugs is very easy, too. But in any case, I don't think there are any pre-written software packages to fit your use case, so you're going to have to learn to write programs.

Note that Smart Plugs may not be rated to switch heavy loads such as big water heaters.

An intermediate step would be to just use the TP-Link Smart Plug App to control your loads. I have been doing that for about 2 months, and it's very easy and intuitive to use. Has various timer/schedule options, including "Turn on X-minutes after sunrise", "Turn off Y-minutes before sunset", etc. Works reasonably well with PV solar, but you need to intervene on cloudy/rainy days.
Modular PowerShelf using 3D printed packs.  60kWh and growing.
https://secondlifestorage.com/showthread.php?tid=6458
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#13
(07-07-2020, 01:34 AM)completelycharged Wrote: I have 7kW of solar active at the moment and approx 30kWh of cycle capacity that I use so when it comes to summer time my bill is less than £5 in power per month. That's with about 15kWh per day use average. High use day would be 50kWh if I run the servers up for some analysis and runs the battery down.

Winter is what made the whole difference for me because the solar would not offset enough of the peak (not just the eye watering intervals) and the off peak was not low enough to really make the diffference when factoring in efficiency losses. Summer is effectively off-grid so the pricing is irrelevant for those months.

What I am contemplating (and have the kit already) is going on an EV tariff and topping up the pack in winter.

Is your solar FIT registered ? How did you get an export tariff ????

All proper instals get registered for SEG. Octopus pay 5.5 / kWh.
Having said that I notified my DNO and I got notification approval which implies I should be eligible for SEG. I've asked Octopus about it now not that I have much to export at the moment.
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