What Happens To The Solar Power I Don’t Use?
One of the common questions that we receive from solar panel installation experts is whether or not there is a use for the solar power that is not distributed and used throughout the home. Depending on the type of installation that you have for your home, the power can be stored or used in a variety of different ways. Solar panels can be connected to the grid through a net meter or gross meter system. If you are not running an off-grid solar system, net metering can make sure that the solar inverter is sending electricity to the meter box in your home as well as back into the electricity grid. This means that if you are consuming less electricity than is produced in your solar system, the rest of the solar power will be sent to neighboring homes.
When a solar installation is connected to the grid, the amount of electricity that you need to draw from in the solar system is measured. Net metering can all be a better option for generating power during storms or during times when your solar cells are not exposed to the sun as intensely. You can always get power into your home when you need it most and you’ll also be generating extra power for the electrical grid that is environmentally friendly. You’ll still receive an energy bill each month from the utility, but it will often be in a negative amount because your solar cells have generated more power than your home has had to take away from the grid.
The payment for any type of export electricity is referred to as a feed-in with most energy companies. Most companies across the United States will pay $.11-$.50 for every kilowatt that’s exported from your system whereas you will pay between $.20-$.40 for 1 kW of electricity that’s used. If you’re running your home efficiently with efficient appliances, better lighting and regularly focusing on energy consumption, you can make sure that you’ll be generating ongoing credits with your energy bill that are more significant.
A gross meter scheme for solar energy works in much the same way. The difference between this and a net metering situation is that all of the electricity that’s generated by your system is immediately exported back to the grid. In a gross metering system, none of the energy generated by the system will be used in your home. The electricity is distributed back into the grid and then further distributed out at the discretion of your energy provider. A gross metering system will measure the entire output of the system. Gross metering support plans are offered by many electrical systems because they can be easier to monitor but they may not offer as generous a return as a net-metering arrangement.
Depending on the area that you live in and the energy companies that are operating, you will be able to access one or both types of metering. The other option that you would be able to use for storing extra energy that’s generated by your system is a battery option. Choosing a battery option will make sure that the extra power generated by the system is stored in a battery for later use from your home. Installing this technology can often be an added expense and installation but it is a favorable option if you would like a completely off-grid system or you need a backup power system throughout your home or business.
Contact us today to learn more about power storage and grid-tie options for your solar installation.