Is my property suitable for a solar power system?

There are very few instances where solar power is not suitable, even properties with shading issues have the option to add optimizers to the effected panels, which make each panel work independently to the others, therefore generating sufficient power to make the system viable. The roof direction and pitch are factors that will effect the efficiency of the solar system. Generally a north facing roof will be more exposed to sunlight, however installing solar panels north and west is an ideal layout to take advantage of morning and afternoon sun. If your house has an east and west facing roof, this will also achieve good power production but less efficient than a north or north west design. Nationwide Solar Solutions uses a program called Nearmap that utilizes high resolution aerial photography taken at different times of the day to design the best panel layout for your property and allows us to determine if there is any shading issues at different times of the day, so we can avoid these areas or add optimizers to the effected panels.

When will I see credits on my electricity bill?

Feed In Tariff credits will appear on your electricity bill after metering has been installed by your electricity retailer 4-8 weeks after the solar system has been installed. This time frame varies from state to state and which electricity retailer you are connected with. The new meter they install in your meterbox will calculate the electricity you are sending to the grid so the retailer knows how much to credit you on your next power bill for the electricity you have sent to the grid. Specific details about your credits such as the itemisation of the amount of electricity your system has exported during the billing period will differ with each electricity provider. The credit will offset your daily supply charge and power usage charges. If your account is in credit after the credits are calculated, this will flow onto the next billing cycle and once the credit accumulates to over $100 most energy retailers will send you a cheque for the total amount of the credit.

What type of warranty is available with my system?

Most of our products carry a 10 year manufacturer warranty excluding solar panels which have a product warranty from 10 years to 25 years depending on the brand, which covers physical faults and cracks and all solar panels come with a 25 year linear output warranty, which means they will produce DC energy for a minimum of 25 years. We also offer a 7 day repair or replace guarantee which means in the unlikely event that your system has a fault, it will be fixed within 1 week guaranteed, so you won’t get expensive power bills waiting for your system to be fixed.

Are there any government rebates or incentives available?

The Australian federal government has a Renewable Energy Target that offers financial incentives for both residential and commercial customers. The Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (STC’s) provides an upfront discount for you to purchase a solar system for your home or business. The amount of the federal government rebate differs depending on your location. There are state government rebates also available in addition to the federal government rebate and these differ from state to state and include rebates on the solar system and solar battery. To find out more speak to one of our solar specialists who will explain the rebates available in your location.

What happens during a blackout?

Most of our solar systems are grid connected, which means the solar panels will only operate when there is electricity available on the grid. If you have a solar battery connected to your solar system it will not operate in the event of a blackout unless you have an optional device connected called EPS (Emergency Power Supply) blackout protection, which activates in the event of a blackout creating a false grid and starts operating 2 seconds after a blackout is detected. The EPS allows specific circuits to operate up to a certain load only, therefore critical devices will be wired into the EPS unit allowing lights, fridges, pumps, roll a door, security system or a medical device to operate in the event of a blackout.

What happens to my solar during cloudy days or at night?

The system size is usually greater than the inverter size by an addition 33% which is the maximum allowed by the Clean Energy Council. For example a 6.6KW system has a 5KW inverter connected and the additional 1.6KW in panel power allows a buffer for cloudy days and makes the system more efficient by a factor of 30% throughout the year. On a cloudy day the system will decreases in power generation, however the inverter will only decrease in power generation once the total power from the panels decreases under 5KW. If the cloud cover is severe and the panel power reduces under 5KW the inverter will decrease power generation according to the amount of sunlight available on the day. If the total amount of energy your house is using is more than the inverter is generating, it will draw the additional power from your battery if you have one connected or from the grid.

Do I have to clean or maintain the panels?

Solar panels don’t usually require much maintenance if they are on a typical roof at 22 degrees as wind and rain are sufficient to keep them clean, however factors such as bird or bat poo, leaves, dust and external mould are factors that will effect sunlight from hitting the cells and will reduce the efficiency of your system. These factors are location specific so it is best to look at the panels if they are visible or the power production through the App to determine if the panels may require cleaning. There are companies that specialise in cleaning services for solar panels if you require a service or regular clean.

If my energy requirements increase, can I upgrade my system?

You can upgrade your system provided the total system size does not exceed the total allowed based on the type of power at your property. Single Phase properties can have up to 13.2KW system size, a 2 Phase can have up to 26.6KW system size and 3 Phase can have up to 39.9KW total system size. There are restrictions on how much power can be sent back to the grid however this can be restricted by the settings on the inverter or an export limiter device which we can install if required.

What if I have a flat roof?

Installing solar panels on a flat roof is not illegal, however it does reduce the efficiency by 15% – 20% depending on the location and also requires more regular cleaning as dust settles on a flat surface more easily. Adding tilt frames to angle the solar panels at the optimum 22 degrees is the best way to maximize the efficiency of the system and reduce the amount of ongoing cleaning to keep the system operating at peak performance, however adding tilt frames will increase the cost of the system by $100 per panel.

When will my system be installed?

Once we receive your signed application or docu sign electronic signature, your solar approval will be submitted. The approval is immediate for smaller system sizes up to 6.6KW or up to a month for larger system sizes. The solar approval gives us permission from your electricity provider to connect your system to the grid. Due to the large number of installers in our network the average wait time for installation is only 2-4 weeks, depending on your location. It is not uncommon with other solar companies to wait up to 2 months for an installation date, but you will not have these issues with Nationwide Solar Solutions, so you can get your solar system installed and start saving as soon as possible.

How and when do I pay for my system?

We offer a range of payment plans which require $0 deposit and once your payment plan is approved we will submit the solar approval and arrange a date for the installation to take place. If you are paying using bank transfer or credit card, we do require a deposit prior to the system being installed.

Will I need a new meter?

Solar systems require an additional meter to be installed in your meterbox by your electricity retailer which calculates the excess power your system sends to the grid to calculate the Feed In Tariff credit which will appear on your electricity bill and can also be calculated by looking at the App connected to your solar inverter, which displays a range of information including the total power sent to the grid.

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