So you’re getting solar panels installed? Congratulations! Going solar is one of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint and save money on energy.
So what’s going to happen once the panels have been installed on your roof?
1. Your power company needs to reconfigure your meter
Before you start using your solar power, you or your installer need to let your electricity network and power company know you’ve had it installed. We can then start the process of getting your meter reconfigured which will ensure your solar electricity is recognised by your meter and therefore on your bill.
Depending on your location, there is a specific process to notify your power company.
Queenslanders need to complete an Electrical Work Request (EWR) in your distributor’s online portal (your distributor will be Energex or Ergon, depending on your location). Your installer should do this for you - ask them if you’re not sure whether they’ve done it.
Once complete, your distributor will forward this to your power company so we can have your meter reconfigured for you. (Feel free to forward this to us yourself as well to get the process underway as soon as possible.)
If you’re in New South Wales, you or your solar installer need to send your power company a copy of the Certificate of Compliance for Electrical Work (CCEW). Your installer should also send that, along with a copy of your Permission to Connect (PTC), to your network. If you’re with Mojo Power, you can send those to us at email@example.com.
2. Adapt your electricity usage habits to get the most out of your solar system
Once your solar system is up and running, it’s important to understand how and when to use electricity in order to maximise the value you’re getting from your solar system.
For new solar owners, the best way to maximise your solar value is to use as much solar power in your home as possible. Yes, you’ll get paid for any excess solar power you export to the grid. However, this feed-in tariff will be far less than the rate you buy electricity for. (This is true no matter which power company you’re with. Find out why that’s the case here.)
So rather than exporting a lot of solar power during the day and then buying electricity back at up to three times the cost in the evening, try and shift more of your energy usage to the daytime by running your appliances (think the dishwasher, washing machine and even pool filter) in the middle of the day.
If you get a battery with your solar panels, any excess solar power you’re not using when it’s being generated can be stored in your battery. This means you’ll have a store of solar power ready to use in the evening, significantly reducing or even eliminating your need to buy electricity from your power company at that time.