Queensland Solar Power System Grid Connection Process

Before you go ahead with your solar power installation in Queensland, a network application is required to be lodged.

There’s a slightly different process depending on whether you are in South East Queensland (Energex distribution network) or in regional QLD (Ergon Energy area).

1. Lodge Network Connection Application

Energex customers: a network connection application can be submitted online and should be approved very quickly if the system is less than 5kW capacity. However, it is far better to let your solar installation company do this for you. It should be approved within an hour if the installer does it and the system is below 5kW capacity.

For home solar power systems above 5kW, it can take up to 5 weeks.

Ergon customers: For those in regional Queensland, a technical assessment may also need to occur, so it’s important to lodge an application with time to spare as this may delay the process. However, systems with exporting inverters up to 3.5kVA or up to 2kVA on a Single Wire Earth Return (SWER) network, and most non-exporting inverters, aren’t required to undergo a technical assessment. In these instances, you may qualify for an expedited connection contract instead of up to the 5 weeks it can take where a technical assessment is required.

2. System Installation

Once your connection application is approved, you can then proceed with having the system installed.

3. Post-Installation Paperwork

Within 5 days of the system being installed, your solar installer is required to lodge a completed EWR form (Energex) or Form A (Ergon). At this point, the installer technically shouldn’t  switch on the system – and neither should you. If you do this with an analogue (spinning disk) meter, it is possible that you spin your meter back further than your last meter reading and your bill will likely be estimated. If you have an older “anti-theft” type digital meter, it is possible you will be charged for the energy you sent back to the grid.

3. Retailer Requests Meter Installation

Energex/Ergon will then send the completed EWR/Form A to the electricity retailer noted on the form.  The retailer will  raise a request for meter installation, usually within a couple of days of receipt of the form.

4. Meter Installation

Meter installation should be carried out within 10 working days for Energex customers, but in reality it may take up to a month or more. For Ergon customers, it could take up to 8 weeks currently.

In the Energex area, subcontractors are used to replace your meter, all with different degrees of fussiness as to the condition of your current meter box. It’s usually best to play it safe and upgrade the meter box if recommended by your solar installation company.

After all this is completed, you’ll need to check with your installer that the system is OK to be switched on.

With that all done, you’re now ready for solar savings – but don’t forget about the feed in tariff!

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