FAQs

What are the financial benefits of solar energy?

When you install a solar energy system on your property, you save money on your electricity bills and protect yourself against rising electricity rates in the future. How much you can save depends on the utility rates and solar policies in your area, but going solar is a smart investment regardless of where you live.

Will I still receive an electricity bill if I have solar panels?

Unless your solar energy system includes battery storage and you are fully off the grid, you will still receive a bill from your utility. However, you can dramatically reduce your bill, or even cut the amount you owe to $0, with a solar panel system that matches your energy use.

What roof space is required to fit a solar PV system?

Each panel generally measures out to about 1.7m2, so the roof area required for a 6kW system will be about 37-40m2 – or possibly more depending on how your roof is laid out and whether you require tilt frames (which need to be spaced out more than panels mounted flush on the roof).

How much energy will my solar system produce?

Depending on a number of factors, the actual power output of a 6kW solar power system will vary.

These variables include:

  • Location and local climate

  • Orientation and tilt angle of the solar panel array

  • Whether there is any shade cast on the panels

  • The performance of the individual components (primarily the panels and inverter)

 

Location and panel orientation are two of the main determinants of solar system energy yields, as the amount of sunshine falling on a solar system’s solar panels directly affects the system’s output. Our energy output figures are calculated based on historical solar irradiance and temperature data at your location, factoring in panel tilt, orientation, and all of the system parameters including.

Do solar panels work in a blackout?

If your solar panel system is connected to the grid, it will shut off in the event of a blackout. This is to prevent emergency responders and electricity utility repair-people from being injured by your panels sending power back to the grid. However, there are certain inverters you can buy that provide backup power in a blackout when paired with a battery.

How long is the payback period on a 6KW solar system?

The benchmark by which most solar shoppers measure their panel’s performance is the payback period – the number of years that the system will take to ‘pay for itself in energy bill savings & feed-in tariff credits.

Keep in mind that returns may be better for systems whose price points are lower, or if you achieve a higher level of solar self-consumption. But also be mindful that you’ll want to be selective about the products and companies that you consider – some deals are too good to be true.

What are STC's (Small Technology Certificates)?

STCs, or Small-scale Technology Certificates, are a commodity that you can use for trade. You can obtain these certificates when you purchase a renewable energy system.

The amount of electricity that is generated or displaced by your system will determine the number of STCs assigned to you.

The number of these certificates you will be entitled to can also vary depending on your geographic location and the size of your system.

What are my STCs worth?

They can be sold either through the open STCs market, where prices will be subject to market forces, or through the STCs clearinghouse.

Alternatively, STCs can be assigned to an agent so they can be exchanged for a discount off your initial purchase price.

What type of warranty comes with the system?

  • ABB 10 years / SMA 10 Years / ZeverSolar 5 Years (upgradeable to 10)

  • Jinko Solar Panels: 10 year product warranty and 25 year performance guarantee

I have 3 phase power, do I need a 3 phase inverter?

Do you need a 3 phase inverter if you have 3 phase power? Technically no. A single-phase inverter will work on a 3 phase connection. This is thanks to the way meters instantaneously calculate grid consumption and solar production as a combination of all three phases.

Voltage rise related solar issues are one of the biggest problems we see with installed solar power systems. We always recommend using a 3 phase inverter when you have three-phase power. This will not only help with voltage rise, but it will mean you can install a larger inverter and a bigger solar system. Western Power may decline the initial application if trying to install a single phase inverter on a 3 phase connection.



Should I upgrade my solar system to a more powerful system?
The Australian Government is changing legislation to reduce payment based on your contribution of energy to the grid. If you have a small system, then you're essentially "capped" at generating a certain amount of energy (based on the KW of your inverter). 

Upgrade to a more powerful inverter and new panels ensure that you can generate more energy for the grid, and therefore more income.

Should I upgrade my solar system to a more powerful system?

Step 1: Go to your switchboard and open it. Locate the solar supply main switch and flick the switch to the off position

Step2: Depending on the distance of your solar system from your switchboard, there may be another isolator switch. If your solar power inverter is more than 3m away from the main switchboard, then locate the isolator. This will be located next to your inverter. If the inverter and switchboard are less then 3m away from each other, disregard this.

Step3: Move to your solar inverter and look for the switch marked PV Array and DC Isolator. In some cases, there may be two switches here. Be sure to turn them both off.

Step 4: Your inverter may have a switch marked Inverter Isolator. This is another switch that must be turned off. If you cannot find this, then ignore this step. At this stage, your solar PV system is now completely switched off. All lights and screens should be black. The system must be turned off for at least 5 minutes before being turned back on.

Step 5: In order to re-start your solar PV system, follow the reverse of this guide. Starting with turning the Inverter Isolator on (if applicable), then both the PV Array and DC Isolator buttons (if applicable), then the second isolator switch (if applicable), then finally the main Solar supply switch on the main switchboard. If you're still experiencing issues, please contact Ford & Doonan Solar.