What comes first, the electric car or the solar panels to charge it from? And can you use the money you save from one to pay for the other? 

We’ve already told you about the benefits you can get from owning both an electric car and installing a photovoltaic solar array on the roof of your house, but for one Florida resident, having a solar array on the roof of his home has helped him to buy a 2012 Chevrolet Volt.

Or rather, the excess energy generated by his solar array has helped him buy a 2012 Chevrolet Volt

A few years ago, retired nephrologist Bob Stonerock invested $170,000 in a 20.8 kilowatts-peak photovoltaic solar array for his home.  Since then, it has provided his home with free electricity and helped supplement the local electrical grid by feeding excess electrical energy back to his utility company. 

For for the past two years he has saved up all of the money he’s made selling solar electricity back to the Orlando Utilities Commission. 

With his profit -- an impressive $5,600 -- Stonerock knew exactly what to do: put a deposit down on a 2012 Chevrolet Volt. 

2012 Chevrolet Volt

2012 Chevrolet Volt

But while $5,600 of solar-powered profit, not to mention free solar power for his home and his new ride might sound good, Stonerock’s original $170,000 investment shouldn’t be ignored. 

It proves, in no uncertain terms, that there’s no such thing as a free ride. 

If he had chosen, $170,000 could have brought Stonerock a fully-tricked out 2012 Tesla Model S Sedan, and a modest 4 kilowatt solar array to charge it with. 

Then again, a smaller solar array certainly wouldn’t have provided the Stonerock home with an almost guaranteed annual income of $2,800 or more every year for the next 30 years or so. 

As for the Chevrolet Volt? If funded from income solely from Stonerock’s solar array, we figure the car will be fully paid off within about 14 years.  


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