7 must know details about investing in solar panels for your home


Your energy bills keep rising, you have reviewed the electricity providers for the sixth time this year and you are still on the most affordable plan. It does not seem as though the power prices are going to come down but you may not be entirely convinced that Solar is right for you. If you aren’t sure if solar is the best option, this article will provide you with the wherewithal to make the right decision. Our team at Erg Energy have compiled seven must know details about investing in solar panels for your home.

1. Where your house is located

Your solar system will only be generating electricity when the sun is shining, so the sun must shine where you live. Luckily in Australia, sun is not something we are short of, even in Melbourne.

If you are not sure you can easily look up your local weather patterns and see seasonal trends which can help inform your decision. Luckily for residents in Bayside Melbourne, solar energy is a suitable option.

2. Your Roof

The sun may shine in Bayside but if your roof is oriented poorly or is in poor condition Solar may not be a good choice.

North facing is the ideal position for solar panels, however, if your roof is orientated in other directions solar will still be effective. It is best to discuss installation options with a qualified renewable energy electrician who can provide you with the best advice for your individual situation.

Furthermore, if a roof has been constructed to industry standard, then it should be able to hold the weight of solar panels. Despite this, if the cladding is beginning to age or you can see that repairs will be imminent it might be a good idea to hold off on installing solar panels until you have made the repairs.

Once solar panels have been installed, they will need to be removed before you can repair the section of the roof that is damaged. This adds extra costs, and you would need them to be professionally installed again by a qualified solar electrician.

Prices for solar technology are constantly falling so if you are planning a renovation or feel that your roof needs a touch up you might be best holding off until these jobs have been completed.


3. How quickly it will pay for itself

This is something that you will want to consider but many factors influence the result. There are factors that you cannot control such as the orientation of your house, or the tilt of the roof.

There are also factors that you can control, like how much you spend on the solar system, whether you include battery storage how big the inverter is, and what time of day you use your power.

These factors all weigh into how quickly your solar investment starts paying dividends.

The best thing that you can do is to match the solar system to your usage and needs. This will mean that you can get the most out of your solar system and it will pay itself off faster.

The easiest way for you to have an estimate for how long it will take is to use a solar calculator. This is not going to provide you with a date that your solar panels will be paid off, but it will provide you with a rough estimate of how many years this will take. Another factor that you should consider is who owns the feed-in-tariffs or green energy certificate if applicable. This information can be discussed with your local Bayside solar installer.

4. How long the solar panels last

Given that it will likely take you a few years to pay off the panels, you want to make sure that they are durable and will last. Luckily, many panels are given a 20+ year manufacturer’s warranty. Most panels are rated to perform for around 25 years.

It is important that you maintain the panels though by keeping them clean and having regular solar panel maintenance performed. Regular maintenance ensures that your solar system will continue operating at maximum efficiency.

5. Ensure your chosen solar panels meet the industry standard

There is nothing worse than spending money on something only to find that it is poorly constructed and falls to pieces before your eyes. Most accredited solar installers in Melbourne will only use products that are of high quality and have been approved by the clean energy council. For a full list of products please click here.

Approved products will be covered by the manufactures warranty in case of any problems that may occur. Additionally, the approved products have been scrutinised by the clean energy council so you can be sure that they are unlikely to break easily.

You can also ask your solar energy electrician installing your panels for a validation certificate that your panels meet industry standard. That way you can be sure that you have purchased a quality product.

6. Select the right size system for your needs

A great way to check what your energy requirements are is to review your electricity bills and determine what your typical energy habits are.

There is no sense in buying a small solar system if your household is a large energy consumer. An average three-person household without a pool will typically use around 5262kWh each year, which averages to around 14.4kWh per day, with less in summer and more in winter.

If you are unable to find a recent bill, then you can use the government’s energy made easy comparison site to provide you with an estimate of your household’s energy usage. After you have determined how much power you are consuming, it is time to discuss with a local solar installer who can provide their expert opinion on which solar system is going to fit your individualised needs.

7. Current Government initiatives

In Victoria currently there are several rebates on offer for installing solar panels and batteries.

For example, you can receive up to a $4174 discount on batteries, there are also $1000 initiatives for installing solar hot water. For more information click here, or view a full list of incentives available.

If you still have more questions or are ready to move to the next step in your solar journey, please call our team of solar experts on 1300 ERG SUN (1300 374 786) or contact us today.

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