The Good Solar Guide: 7 Steps To Tiny Bills For Australian Homeowners

Order the Good Solar Guide by Finn Peacock

Almost 10 years ago, I sat down for 2 weeks in Brighton Public Library and put everything I knew about residential solar power systems into my battered old laptop. I used the free Wi-Fi to upload that information to a home-brewed website called SolarQuotes. The knowledge was picked up from working for the Energy Transformed Flagship at CSIRO combined with my broader background in electrical engineering.

Since then, millions of people have visited the site; which has been continuously improved over the years. [Read more…]

Am I Breaking The Law If My Electricity Meter Runs Backwards?

Solar Panels And Electricity Meters Running Backwards

Are you allowed to use newly installed solar to run your meter backwards?

If you have a very old electricity meter, a new rooftop solar installation can make that meter run backwards. But only if the solar power system is switched on before a new compatible meter is installed. [Read more…]

Asking Origin How Long It Takes Them To Change An Electricity Meter: An 11 Step Process

Origin energy and electricity meter changeovers

Electricity meters are low cost, reliable devices that measure how much grid your home uses.  Traditional meters need someone to come around and read them, but all new meter installations now have to be smart meters that transmit information wirelessly, making your human meter reader redundant. [Read more…]

Ronald’s Hints, Tips, And Tricks For Commercial Solar

commercial solar tips

Here at SolarQuotes we’ve put together a resource on commercial solar power called:

Solar For Your Business ‘101’:  A Beginner’s Guide

If you have a business but no solar panels, it’s made for you.  Or if you work at a business without solar and want some cred for suggesting a money saving idea you may want to run your eyeballs over it for that reason.  It’s full of solid advice and I highly recommend it.  The only way I could recommend it more is if I wrote it myself.  And I didn’t do that because I actually had no involvement with it at all. [Read more…]

Rooftop Solar And Exclusion Zones: Where Solar Panels Dare Not Go

solar panel exclusion zones

How close to the edge of the roof should your solar panels go?

In the past I’ve written about solar panel clamping zones which determine where, on a solar panel’s edge, you can place the clamps that attach the modules to their mounting rails.  What I didn’t do was go into just where on a roof solar panels can and can’t be installed. [Read more…]

SA Power Networks Confirms 5kW Inverter Limit For South Australia

new rules

Installing solar in SA after 1 December 2017? Here’s what you need to know…

SA Power Networks Makes Radelaide Sadelaide

It’s December and the latest rules for connecting rooftop solar to the grid in South Australia are now available from SA Power Networks (SAPN).  I called them late last month to try and get a scoop on what they were planning, but no luck there — SAPN play their cards close to their chests.

So first thing on Friday morning I checked their website and found no change from November.  But that’s okay, I completely understand.  I know there are times people will say they’ll get things done by Friday but actually get them in first thing Monday morning.  Or possibly three weeks later.  That also happens.

But now they’ve had a whole week now to catch up and I see there have been some changes on their site.  There is movement at the station and I’m passing the word around.  The colt from old Regret has got away…

If you can’t be bothered to read this whole post then here’s what you need to know about installing solar in SA from 1 December 2017: [Read more…]

Can An Installer Change The Quoted Price Of My Solar System?

stc price

The STC price has plummeted and pushed the price of solar up. What should you do if you’ve already accepted a quote and the installer wants to increase the price?

I’m going to ask you to imagine preparing to buy a rooftop solar system.  I want you to see yourself working hard, saving your money, doing your research, and getting yourself some quotes.  After careful consideration, you decide upon an installer, sign the contract, and transfer a 10% deposit to them.  At that point you would be looking forward to saving money on your electricity bills and doing your bit to help the environment.

Now imagine how you’d feel if, before the day of the installation, the installer contacts you and says the price has gone up and you now have to pay $1,000 extra.

I imagine you wouldn’t be very happy about it. [Read more…]

Solar Panel Clamping Zones: Are Your Panels Mounted Correctly?

clamping zones

That clamp is not in the zone! After reading this post you will know what that means. (Photo credit: Matt Hines – definitely not one of his installs)

There is one main way solar panels are attached to roofs in Australia and I’m hoping you won’t be surprised to learn it’s not glue.  If you’ve got panels, they are almost certainly fastened to your roof with clamps and held tight in the loving embrace of metal brackets. [Read more…]

Restrictions On Rooftop Solar In QLD Eased — Powerwall 2 & Larger Inverters Allowed With Export Limiting

qld map

Good news for Queenslanders who want to install a battery or a bigger solar inverter.

There is good news for Queenslanders looking to install rooftop solar and anyone thinking of of installing AC coupled battery systems such as the Powerwall 2. [Read more…]

Solar Panel Maintenance: How often should they be inspected?

Some defects found when inspecting badly installed solar. If you suspect your system was shoddily installed, you should book an inspection ASAP. But how often should your system be maintained/inspected if you used a reputable installer?

Is getting your panels inspected worth the expense? In the end, it comes down to how safe you really consider your rooftop solar to be. [Read more…]

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