Users of conventional electricity will note the increase in energy prices over the past few months. Retailers attribute this to the significant increases in wholesale energy prices. It is estimated that in 2017 alone, wholesale electricity prices have risen by approximately 55%, with retailers passing the hikes onto customers to protect their margins. Customers are being encouraged to enter two-year plans that offer a fixed consumption rate, in an effort to prevent customers from switching retailers. The more prudent consumer, however, knows to regularly switch retailers to take advantage of discounts and deals reserved for new customers. But, there is a third, more economical option:
oversized solar energy systems.
In solar energy terms, oversizing refers to installing energy systems with a total panel capacity that is greater than the inverter capacity. The excess power generated is fed back into the power grid which pays for night time usage, and supply or connection charges too. In some cases, the volume of excess power generated is high enough to result in consumers getting energy cheques from retailers. Increasing panel capacity can also help improve the inverter’s average efficiency which makes up for what is lost. Additionally, many customers consider oversizing to factor in increased energy usage in the future, or in preparation of a future battery installation.
Oversizing solar panels is a wise decision because Australian weather conditions and its physical location typically comes in the way of solar inverters being used to their maximum capacity. A standard solar power system’s production profile will reflect a bell curve, displaying lower production in the mornings and evenings, and the peak occurring in the middle of the day, which means the inverter’s full capacity isn’t used all day. No matter how well designed your solar power system may be, weather conditions are likely to impact your power production, with maximum capacity being reached only for a few hours a day. Also, considering how the Feed-In Tariffs in each state are usually capped at 5kw of inverter capacity, oversizing the panels would be effective in maximising energy production whilst also retaining the FIT.
At Total Solar Solutions Australia, we recently completed an installation for a client that was interesting a solar power system for their home. After analysing their needs, we gauged that they needed a 3.6kW solar system. But we installed a 7.2kW solar system instead, which was double the size of what they needed. We calculated that with the extra energy feeding into the grid earning the tariff, the additional earnings would pay for their night time usage, as well as their supply charge. In effect, they would end up with a net zero bill across the year.
Looking to install a solar power system to replace your high energy bills? Get in touch with Total Solar Solutions Australia today to discuss your needs, as we give you solutions that will come with financing options too, making it an overall easier investment for your business.