We live in a land of plentiful sunshine and our environment is screaming out to us to use more green energy alternatives. Solar energy is undoubtedly much better for the environment – which in itself is a good reason to make the switch, but there are other factors to consider before you bite the bullet and have a solar panel system installed on your home. Here’s what you need to consider:
- How much electricity are you actually using?
There are many variables that determine the amount of your bill such as tariff or electricity plan you’re on, size of your home and the number of appliances you use on a daily basis, but in a report from the Essential Service Commission of Australia, the national average for electricity consumption is 18kWh per day. In New South Wales the usage rate is almost double that, sitting at 33kWh per day.
Switching to solar is tantamount to installing a mini power plant on your roof that effectively substitutes the power plant where your utility gets its electricity. This would mean that the larger your power bill, the more money you can save, and hence the more a solar power system will be worth it. When looking into solar panels, its good to do the maths to figure out what you are using currently, in what time frames and whether the system what percentage of your current usage will the new system cover.
- Cost of a solar panel system
The market right now is flooded with cheap solar panels, but it is not worth investing in them as they are prone to under-performance. It is also dubious to commission installers with cheap rates as they often rip off households by not responding to service requests and having misleading marketing. Rule of thumb is if it is too cheap to be true, it won’t be worth it.
Good quality solar panels used to be a pricey initial investment, but now you can buy an average-sized 5kW solar system with good quality panels costing as little as around $5,500 fully installed, generating around 20kWh a day. With electricity prices across Australia soaring, installing solar power is becoming quite a trend especially now that solar panel prices are at a record low.
- Energy costs from using solar panels
In NSW a typical household pays a little over 30c per kWh using the energy from the grid; meanwhile, the offset energy rate in NSW costs 11.9 to 15.0 cents per kWh (depending on retailer). Your solar power system will produce electricity during daylight hours, any excess electricity generated is fed back into the grid. Your energy provider will credit you for the export of power and this credit helps offset your power bills.
The benefit of solar power in NSW is that it reduces your power bill by around $400 per year per kW of solar, so if you install a 5kW solar system you can save up to around $2,000 a year, or $500 every quarterly bill.
- Return on investment
As mentioned earlier, the upfront cost of investing in a solar system is a big caveat to switching to solar energy. However, you can rest assured that you will get a return on investment, and more savings. It wasn’t all that long ago that it took 7 years or more to break even, but with the current solar panel prices the best case scenario is a return on your money from 3 to 5 years, depending on the price of the components or the size of the solar power system.
Is solar power really worth it?
Short answer: Yes. If you have the budget for a good quality system from a reputable installer and are willing to wait 3-5 years to get a solid return on investment, then solar power is definitely worth it.
The addition of solar batteries pretty much hits the nail on the head. Not only do they enable households to run their home almost entirely off solar power, they also allow us to use the energy generated from the solar panels at virtually any time.
Any queries we can help you with give us a call on 9477 2550.