Solar Electric System – Net Metering

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 7,652
    SolarWorld Authorized Installer Keith Knowles explains how homeowners can effectively sell surplus energy back to their utilities, building up credits for future use.

    Keith Knowles: Hi! I am Keith Knowles with LiveLight Energy. I am a licensed Solar Contractor and an authorized installer for SolarWorld, America's largest manufacturer of solar panels. I am here today to help you select the right equipment for your solar home. And today we are going to talk about net metering and how it will help you save money.

    Your Electric Meter measures the amount of electricity in kilowatt-hours that your home uses. Most meters will turn both directions counting kilowatt-hours coming into your home or going back onto the grid. When you have a solar electric system occasionally, it will generate more power than you use in your home. In that case it will send the power back to the grid. The grid will act like a battery where you can store that power for later use. When your system is installed, you will sign some form of net metering agreement with the utility. This means that the utility will allow you to put power back on the grid, turning your meter backward. The utility will then charge you only for the net which is the kilowatt-hours you used, minus the kilo watt hours your system generated. If over the month your system generated more kilowatt-hours than you used, most utilities will credit the surplus on your next bill. A few utilities will send you a small cheque once a year for any surplus you have generated, but most will simply reset your account. So it usually doesn't pay to oversize your system. Many utilities have a tiered rate structure. They charge more per kilowatt-hour as your total consumption increases. Fortunately, since it's just the total that's measured, your Solar Electric System offsets the most expensive electricity first. This makes the savings harder to calculate, but your contractor or installer can usually give you a good indication of how much your monthly bill will drop.

    If you have chosen your equipment well, your solar system should last you for decades with little service other than an occasional panel rents. Now, it's time to choose a solar contractor by going to solarworld.

    com and clicking on Free Estimate.