Tips

This information is related to FAQs from clients, we've tried to make it pretty easy to read but if you want to have a chat about any of it please email contact@smartcommercialsolar.com.au and we'll be in touch!


RENEWABLE ENERGY TIPS

 

  • Installing solar-powered outdoor pathway lights is one of the easiest ways to use solar energy at home.

  • Building a new home is the best time to design and orient the home to take advantage of the sun's rays. A well-oriented home lets in the winter sun in south-facing windows to reduce heating bills, and blocks the heat from summer sun to reduce cooling bills (see the passive solar heating and cooling section).

  • Heating water is a great use of solar power (see the water heating section). If you have a swimming pool or hot tub, you can use solar power to cut pool heating costs. Most solar pool heating systems are cost competitive with conventional systems and have very low operating costs. It's actually the most cost-effective use of solar energy.

  • Installing small wind turbines, which range in size from 400 Watts to 20 kilowatts, can provide some of the electricity for your home. Other uses of micro wind turbines (20-500 Watts) include charging batteries for sailboats and other recreational vehicles.

 

LONG-TERM SAVINGS TIP

 

If you've already made your home as energy efficient as possible, and you still have high electricity bills and have access to a good solar resource, you might want to consider generating your own electricity with a solar power system. Solar panels can be easily installed onto ground- or roof-mounted racks, and new products are available that integrate solar cells with the roof, making them much less visible than older systems.

You should consider several factors if you want to install a solar power system, such as your solar resources, siting and sizing the system, the type of system (grid-connected or stand-alone), and electrical safety. Because of the complexity and need for proper installation, it's best to have a professional solar contractor install your system.

 

IS A SOLAR POWER SYSTEM RIGHT FOR ME?

 

You could consider adding a solar power system to your house if your location has adequate solar resources. A shade-free, south-facing location is best. At least one of the following should also be true:

  • You live in a remote location and your home is not connected to the utility grid. Using solar power might cost you less than extending a power line to the grid. Your power provider will connect your solar system to the electricity grid and credit your bill for any excess power you produce.

  • You are willing to pay more up front to reduce the environmental impact of your electricity use.

  • Your state, city, or utility offers rebates, tax credits, or other incentives. Visit the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency to find out about financial incentives in your area.

 

THE FOLLOWING IS FROM THE CLEAN ENERGY COUNCIL

Guide-To-Installing-Solar-PV-For-Business-And-Industry-February-2014-2.Pdf

 

WHY INVEST IN SOLAR PV?


ELECTRICITY PRICES HAVE INCREASED OVER THE LAST FEW YEARS, RESULTING IN INCREASED OPERATIONAL EXPENSES FOR BUSINESSES.

On the other hand, the cost of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems has declined, making solar an increasingly affordable option for businesses. By installing a PV system, you will be able to offset your electricity consumption and hedge against future price rises. Although systems may require a large up-front capital cost, payback periods are typically around 5 to 10 years.

This guide details the key steps you will need to undertake to install solar PV at your business.

The use of solar photovoltaic (PV) panel systems has grown significantly in Australia this decade, and is now an increasingly affordable option for Australian businesses looking to hedge against the rising cost of electricity.

Solar PV systems generate power by converting the energy in sunlight to clean electricity. This conversion takes place within modules of specially fabricated materials that make up the solar panels. In most cases solar PV panels are connected to the mains power supply through a device called an inverter.

With a wide range of products and suppliers on the market, being an informed consumer has never been more important. This guide, intended for businesses and industry wanting to install a solar PV system, provides an introduction to the technology and navigates the process for commercial-scale solar system installation. 

 

TOP FIVE TIPS FOR PURCHASING SOLAR PV

 

1 | UNDERSTAND THE ELECTRICITY CONSUMPTION OF YOUR BUSINESS AND CHOOSE THE RIGHT SIZE SYSTEM FOR YOUR NEEDS

Your consumption profile will determine the viability of solar PV for your business and help you decide what size system is appropriate. 

2 | UNDERSTAND YOUR ELECTRICITY TARIFFS AND HOW THEY MIGHT CHANGE

The business case for investing in a solar PV system will depend on what electricity tariffs you pay and how these may change once your system is installed. Make sure you get all the information you need from your electricity retailer.

3 | FIND A SOLAR PV RETAILER

Check if the company has signed on to the CEC Solar PV Retailer Code of Conduct, and make sure they only use CEC-accredited installers with experience in commercial systems. This will be critical to the design and installation of your system.

4 |  DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE ON TECHNOLOGY, PRODUCTS, WARRANTIES AND GUARANTEES

There is a diverse range of products on the market that vary in price and quality. Make sure you do your homework on both the products you purchase and workmanship guarantees.

5 | ENGAGE WITH YOUR ELECTRICITY DISTRIBUTOR EARLY TO UNDERSTAND GRID CONNECTION REQUIREMENTS

Connection to the grid should be discussed with your electricity distributor very early in the process so that they are aware of the project and you, or your accredited installer, are aware of any technical requirements that have to be met from an early stage.