Whether you have an existing solar PV array or you’re considering an installation soon, how you harness the energy generated by your system is key to maximising the benefit of your solar PV array.
Lower installation costs and rising electricity prices have led to an increase in the viability of solar PV. However, with lessening financial support from the government savings on energy bills are now the primary driver behind an installation.
So, how can you use more of your solar energy?
It sounds simple, but the design of the system influences how a customer can use their yield. Systems installed on a south-facing orientation generate the most electricity. On the other hand, east or west orientations may generate slightly less but result in generation at more usable times.
Solar installers should consider occupancy and usage to design a system that produces when demand is highest throughout the day.
Theory is great, but nothing beats the facts and figures.
Knowing exactly what your system is generating, when it’s generating and when it’s exporting puts you in the best position to maximise consumption. With this data, you’ll be able to justify your daytime usage and set your appliances accordingly.
Installing or adding monitoring to a solar PV array is a must.
Living with solar is a different way of life.
Switching from a traditional mindset of running devices during the evening to running them throughout the day will result in a higher percentage of solar gain that can be harnessed. With this step, it’s important to know what you can use and when (hence the monitoring) and a little trial and error.
Timing appliances to run during the day is the best way to maximise solar utilisation and reduce grid demand. Looking at how devices draw power, what devices overlap and what weather to expect should all be considered. The result is higher usage and more gain.
Battery Storage & Hot Water Diverters
How homeowners use their solar generation has plagued solar installers for years. Battery storage and hot water diverters are two potential solutions.
Storage solutions enable customers to charge their solar energy into a battery and discharged throughout the evening. This replaces grid demand almost entirely and almost eradicates electricity bills. Hot water diverters send excess, unused electricity to heat your hot water tank via an immersion heater.
If you think you have high energy demand or you know you’re exporting lots of your generation, considering a secondary installation might be of benefit.