MYTH: Solar can’t power my home
Without a huge solar PV system and battery bank – you are right. Grid-tied systems, however, don’t have to.
How a grid tied system works
In a grid tied system, you are not actually powering your own home. You are producing power to send to the electrical grid which is known as micro-generation. When you produce more electricity than you consume, your utility provider will credit you for the additional electricity through net-metering (see Section 8 of the Micro-Generation Regulation). You will still have a utility bill because the grid is still being operated. Your fees may include your distribution charge, transmission charge, local access fee and delivery charge. If you do not produce quite enough energy to cover the amount of electricity you consume, you will also need to pay the difference for electricity use.
Why this works
This means that no matter how much electricity your solar panels produce:
- You will have full electricity if the grid is operational (example of non-operational would be a local power outage)
- Your lights will not be ‘dimmed’
- You will have full power for your electric water heater, electric vehicle charging station, computers, TV’s, Microwave, and other electrical needs
- You will have electricity at night and in the middle of winter
Your panels are intended to off-set your carbon footprint, so while you still are using the electrical grid, you are ensuring that the amount of electricity you consume is being provided by clean energy sources.
What about in the winter when there is less light
Alberta winters provide an ideal setting for solar panels to produce electricity. There will be times through the year where your panels do produce more or less electricity based on amount of daylight hours, shadows, and temperature. The reason micro-generation works is because you are credited when your panels produce more electricity, which you can carry forward for 12 months. These credits can then be applied to your bill during the months where your panels produce less electricity than your household consumes. This essentially zero’s out your electricity costs, so all you have to worry about is the utility company fees.
Now that you are ready to save on your electricity bills, build equity in your home, and help protect the environment, give us a call for a free estimate!
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