Home Solar Power Systems: The Basics

Installing home solar power systems on your rooftop is a great way to save on electricity bills and reduce your carbon footprint. If you have been reading our blogs then you probably know what to expect during a solar panel installation. In this blog edition we are going to explain the basics of home solar power in greater detail, including: how solar power works, how it saves you money, how much money it can save you, how much it costs and how to select good quality equipment.

How Does Solar Power Work In Australia?

Most Australian home solar power systems are connected directly to the grid without a battery. The solar inverter communicates with the grid and will utilise all of your solar power before drawing power from the grid. Inverters also facilitate the transfer of solar power to the grid for a tariff when more than can be used is produced by your system.

Off-grid systems are removed from the grid and include solar batteries to provide 24-hours’ worth of power in the event sunlight isn’t present. Off-grid systems are becoming increasingly popular in rural Australia where it is very expensive to connect to the grid. The solar systems in these instances are not cheap, but provide free electricity throughout their lifetime.

Hybrid systems exist too, and include both a connection to the grid and a solar battery to store solar energy. Solar batteries provide a great backup source of energy, but offer a terrible return on investment. No Australian hybrid solar system that has been clinically tested has offered a return on investment in under 8 years.

How Do Home Solar Systems Save You Money?

The primary way in which solar can help you save money on energy costs is by reducing the amount of energy you need from the grid. A typical household may offset 30-70% of their energy requirements by installing a solar system. The offset percentage even approaches 100% if a solar battery is installed too.

A secondary means of saving money using a solar system is by selling excess solar energy back to the grid for a fee called a tariff.

How Much Money Can They Save You?

The money you can save by using a solar system is dependant on the size of the system. You may refer to the following chart by an independent review panel to calculate how much you can save.

System Size Ave. Daily Solar Energy Created (kWh) Ave. Daily Electricity Usage (kWh) Annual savings from self-consumption Annual savings from Feed-in Tariff Annual Total Savings
3kW 10.2 10 $360 $225 $585
5kW 17 20 $692 $350 $1,042
6.6kW 22.5 25 $876 $472 $1,348
8kW 27.2 30 $1,053 $575 $1,628
10kW 34.1 40 $1,384 $700 $2,084

How To Select Good Quality Solar Equipment

As with most purchases of high quality equipment, there are cheap, low-quality alternatives advertised on the internet and elsewhere. Solar is a long term investment and repairs and maintenance are expensive. Therefore, it’s best practice to invest in good-quality equipment that will last. Look for ‘tier 1’ goods as verified by Bloomberg NEF’s ranking system. Another method to use to select good quality solar equipment is to check PV Evolution Labs’ annual independent testing report. Look for top performers in this report. Finally, a quick Google search will uncover whether or not a solar company has an Australian office and phone number. This is especially important when you are trying to claim a warranty if something goes wrong with your solar equipment.

Contact Essential NRG Today

If you are looking to install solar photovoltaic panels and/or solar batteries at your property, contact Essential NRG today. We supply and install solar panels all over. Contact us Monday to Friday, 7:00am to 4:00pm on 0409 381 978. We will be happy to answer any questions that you may have before proceeding to provide a quote and install your photovoltaic panels in a fast and affordable fashion.