WATCH: In Metchosin, one homeowner is embracing solar power. He says he’s got the largest array of solar panels on Vancouver Island. As Luisa Alvarez tells us, he’s hoping to change minds about the benefits of solar energy.
One Metchosin man is powering his entire home and two electric cars with his collection of solar panels.
Stephen Gilbert, the homeowner, says energy is taken from his solar panels as a direct current and is then transformed into an alternating current. It then goes into an electrical panel before it travels underground to power his house.
"We have a big family and we had electricity bills that were $1,400, $1,600 for two months so, I had to do something to figure out if we could do something different instead of paying out that money because once it’s gone, it’s gone," said Gilbert.
Gilbert began the installation process in September of last year with the total cost coming to $42,000 dollars, and while the project was initially costly, he says it is well worth it.
"It will actually pay for itself in a very short period of time. My last three electricity bills were $12.98 cents and a credit of over $700," said Gilbert.
He also adds the $12.98 is a BC Hydro administration fee that cannot be avoided.
At $42,000 it is clear solar panels are a big ticket item and may not be a viable option for everyone but even so this example has sparked interest within the community.
Gilbert says he has given tours to nearly one hundred Metchosin residents.
As for the hefty price tag, Gilbert says even going partially solar can still reduce the electricity bill and help the environment.