Solar Panels FAQs

Solar Panels FAQs: Sydney

Table of Contents

1. How can I save money from the solar system?

Remember the day you installed a solar system at your property, the moment you started saving money? There are 2 ways in which you can save money: FIT and Savings on Electricity Bill. During the daytime, electricity is generated by the solar system. This means you do not have to purchase any extra power from the utility grid, so you also save the amount you would have to pay for electricity to the grid. The excess electricity that is not used is sent back to the grid, and the owner gets compensated for extra unused electricity that you export to the grid. It is called the tariff and varies from state to state government policy and incentive plans.

One way to be profitable is to use maximum solar energy and lesser power.

2. What are Tier 1 Panels?

It refers to a financial ranking scale developed by Bloomberg New Energy Finance Corporation, which ranks companies manufacturing solar panels according to financial stability. But, it is not a technical ranking of panels they manufacture or any indication of panel quality or performance.

3. What are covered in warranties on solar panels and inverters in solar systems?

The warranties are mostly on Tier 1 panels, with a 10-year warranty on products and workmanship and 25 – 30 years on panel performance. If we talk about inverters, they generally have at least 5 to 10 years, but some inverters have a minimum of 10 years, and then they charge after ten years of warranty.

4. What is the performance warranty of solar panels?

As we all know, the power output of solar panels degrades over time. But a solar panel performance warranty is also a manufacturer warranty that only covers panel performance regarding power output and how much they degrade over time. But it only includes part of the product. The standard performance warranty is 25 years; in 25 years, it almost degrades 80% of the initial power output.

5. What are the benefits of a solar energy system?

When you install solar system, you come up with many benefits for the environment as well as being the owner of the property, which includes:

  • It is a clean, renewable energy resource which reduces carbon footprint.
  • It saves money and also reduces electricity bill amount.
  • These are less noise pollution means of saving the environment than petrol or diesel generators.
  • They have a long time and require a minimum or no maintenance.
  • It increases the value in terms of money of the property.

6. How can one get the most out of solar panels?

There are a few points which can be done, especially in winter:

  • Keep them clean and proper maintenance.
  • Angle it in a proper direction.
  • Install a solar tracker

7. What should one know before installing solar panels? 

  • Type of Roof
  • Orientation of roof
  • The angle of your roof
  • Climatic Condition
  • Zone Regulations
  • Amount of sunlight solar panels receive

8. What Is a Purchase Power agreement?

A Purchase Power Agreement(PPA) is an agreement between a customer and a third party where they both agree to install and operate a solar system on the owner’s property. The customer agrees to purchase electricity the system generates at a fixed rate but at different periods.

9. What are STCs?

Scale Technology Certificate (STC) is a renewable energy certificate (REC) used to offset the cost of initializing solar systems.

10. What is a feed-in Tariff (FIT)? 

FFeed Tariff (FIT) is a govt mandate price utilized to pay for electricity generated by REC. It is a rate that the electricity retailer pays for any surplus electricity that the solar system produces. In Australia, the government has set a minimum mandatory price of $0.10/kWh.

11. How do I choose a good solar panel?

Choosing a good solar panel involves considering several factors to ensure the panels meet your energy needs and provide a reliable and cost-effective solution.

Here are some key considerations:

  • Efficiency
  • Types of solar panels
  • Cost
  • Space at the property
  • Cost
  • Temperature

12. Are 25-Year Performance Warranties For Solar Panels Normal? 

Yes, 25-year performance warranties for solar panels are common and have become an industry standard. These warranties typically guarantee that the solar panels will maintain a certain level of performance over 25 years.

Performance warranties usually specify that the panels will still produce a minimum percentage of their rated power output after a certain number of years. Remember that the performance of solar panels can be affected by various factors, including weather conditions, shading, and maintenance. Regular maintenance and proper installation by qualified professionals can contribute to your solar panel system’s optimal performance and longevity.

13. What is the average cost of a home solar system in Australia?

The cost of a home solar system in Australia can vary based on several factors, including the size of the system, the type and quality of the solar panels and inverters, installation costs, and any additional features or components. Estimates are indicative and can vary based on location, installation complexity, and the specific components used. Moreover, government incentives, rebates, and feed-in tariffs can significantly affect a solar system’s overall cost and return on investment. In Australia, the availability and structure of these incentives can vary by state and territory.

14. What are the limits and uses of solar battery systems in Australia?

The use of solar panel battery systems in Australia is subject to various regulations, and the specific limits and guidelines may vary depending on factors such as location and government policies.

Here are some key points to consider:

  • Size Limitation
  • Grid Connection rule 
  • FITs
  • Battery incentives 
  • Off Grid System
  • Energy storage standards

15. How does solar work in Australia? 

Solar power works in Australia by harnessing energy from the sun and converting it into electricity through photovoltaic (PV) cells. 

Here’s a basic overview of how solar power works in Australia:

  • Solar Panels
  • Photovoltaic Effect 
  • Inverters
  • Electricity Consumption 
  • Net Metering 
  • Govt. Incentives 
  • Battery Storage

16. Is Australia good for solar energy?

Yes, Australia is exceptionally well-suited for solar energy. The country has abundant sunlight and favourable geographical conditions, making it one of the best locations for solar power generation. 

Here are some key reasons why Australia is good for solar energy:

  • Large Land size
  • High Solar Irradiance 
  • Widespread rooftop solar potential
  • Reduced reliance on fossil fuels
  • Govt Incentives
  • Advancements in technology
  • Community and commercial interests 

17. What is the best position for solar panels in Australia? 

The best position for solar panels in Australia is typically facing north, as this orientation maximises exposure to sunlight throughout the day. In the Southern Hemisphere, where Australia is located, the sun predominantly travels across the northern part of the sky. Therefore, solar panels facing north can capture sunlight more directly and generate more electricity:

  • Orientation
  • Tilt Angle 
  • Avoiding Shading
  • East-West Configurations
  • Solar Tracking Systems
  • Local Considerations 
  • Seasonal Adjustments

18. How much are Jinko Solar panels in Australia?

The cost of solar panels, including those manufactured by Jinko Solar, can vary based on several factors, including:

  • Panel Type and Model
  • Capacity ( Wattage)
  • Installation costs 
  • Govt incentives and rebates 
  • Local market conditions 

19. How long will it take to charge my EV at home?

The time it takes to charge an electric vehicle (EV) at home depends on several factors, including the charging power of your home charging station, the capacity of your EV’s battery, and the state of charge when you begin charging.

Here are the key factors to consider:

Charging Power (kW): 

The charging power of your home charging station, typically measured in kilowatts (kW), is a critical factor. Common home charging stations for EVs have power ratings ranging from 3.6 kW to 22 kW or more. The higher the power rating, the faster the charging.

Battery Capacity (kWh): 

The capacity of your EV’s battery, measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh), determines how much energy it can store. EVs have different battery capacities, and larger batteries take longer to charge.

State of Charge (SOC): 

If you’re starting to charge your EV from a low state of charge (e.g., 20%), it will take longer to charge compared to when starting from a higher state of charge (e.g., 80%).

20. How Do I Choose The Size Of My Solar System? 

Choosing the size of your solar system involves assessing your energy needs, available roof space, budget, and other factors. 

Here are the steps to help you determine the appropriate size for your solar system:

  • Determining Energy consumptions 
  • Understand Your Roof Space
  • Calculate Solar Panel Output
  • Consider Your Budget
  • Local Solar Incentives and Feed-in Tariffs
  • Energy Efficiency Measures
  • Consult with Solar Professionals
  • Review Financing Options

21. Why install solar battery storage? 

Installing solar battery storage offers several advantages for homeowners and businesses looking to enhance their solar energy systems.

Here are some key reasons why you might consider adding solar battery storage to your setup:

  • Energy independence
  • Backup Power during Outages
  • Maximise Self-Consumption
  • Time-of-Use Optimization
  • Reduced Grid Reliance
  • Environmental Impact
  • Improved Return on Investment

22. How to Plan for Solar When Constructing a New Home?

Planning for solar when constructing a new home allows you to integrate solar energy seamlessly into the design and construction process.

Here are steps to consider when planning for solar in new home construction:

  • Site Assessment
  • Energy Efficiency Measures
  • Solar-Ready Design
  • Roof Design
  • Aesthetics and Planning Permissions
  • Sizing the solar systems
  • Selecting Solar Components
  • Collaboration with Contractors
  • Energy Storage (Optional)

23. How do you avoid the traps and pitfalls of solar?

Avoiding traps and pitfalls in adopting solar energy requires careful planning, research, and consideration of various factors.

Here are some key steps to help you navigate potential challenges and make informed decisions:

Get to know about Solars 

  • Set Realistic Expectations
  • Get Multiple Quotes
  • Check Installer Credentials
  • Avoid High-Pressure Sales Tactics
  • Check warranty coverage
  • Consider Product Quality
  • Regular Maintenance and Monitoring
  • Understand Your Energy Consumption

24. How does Solar Power increase your Home’s value?

Solar power can increase your home’s value through various factors contributing to its appeal and efficiency. 

Here are ways in which solar power can enhance the value of your home:

  • Energy Savings
  • Increased Home Efficiency
  • Reduced Operating Costs
  • Increased Property Value
  • Marketing Advantage
  • Positive Environmental Impact
  • Home Appraisal Impact
  • Home Resilience

25. Does the solar system come with insurance?

Solar panels and solar power systems typically come with warranties to protect against manufacturing defects and ensure the performance of the equipment. However, warranties are not the same as insurance. Let’s break down the distinctions:

Warranties: 

  • Manufacturer’s Warranty: Solar panels typically come with a manufacturer’s warranty covering defects in materials and workmanship. This warranty usually lasts 10 to 25 years, with most reputable manufacturers providing a linear performance guarantee over the warranty period.
  • Inverter Warranty: Inverters, a crucial component of a solar power system, also have warranties. These warranties typically range from 5 to 25 years, depending on the type and brand of the inverter.
  • Workmanship Warranty: Solar installers often provide a separate workmanship warranty for the installation itself. This warranty covers issues related to the installation process and is typically valid for 1 to 10 years.

Insurance:

  • While warranties cover equipment-related issues, they do not cover accidents, theft, vandalism, or other unforeseen events that may damage or destroy the solar system. For these types of risks, homeowners may want to consider solar insurance.
  • Solar Insurance: Some insurance companies offer specialised solar insurance policies. These policies can cover the cost of repairing or replacing solar panels and related equipment in the event of covered perils. It’s important to carefully review the terms and coverage of any insurance policy to understand what is included and excluded.
  • Homeowners Insurance: In some cases, homeowners may be able to add coverage for their solar panels to their existing homeowners insurance policy.

26. What are the advantages of solar energy?

Solar energy offers numerous advantages, making it a popular and sustainable power source. 

Here are some key advantages of solar energy:

  • Net Metering
  • FITs
  • Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs)
  • Community Solar Programs
  • Battery Storage and Time-of-Use Tariffs
  • Peer-to-Peer Trading Platforms
  • Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging
  • Grid Stability and Reliability
  • Scalability and Versatility
  • Job Creation
  • Technological Advancements
  • Off-Grid Solutions
  • Resilience During Power Outages

27. How many panels are in a 6.6 kw solar system?

The number of solar panels in a 6.6 kW (kilowatt) solar system can vary based on the efficiency of the solar panels and the local solar irradiance (amount of sunlight) in your location. The formula to calculate the number of solar panels is as follows:

Number of panels=Total system capacity (kW)Capacity of one panel (kW)

Number of panels=

                                         Capacity of one panel (kW)

                                         Total system capacity (kW)

For a 6.6 kW solar system, assuming the solar panels have a capacity of 300 watts each:

Number of panels=6.6 kW0.3 kW/panel≈22 panels

28. What are the best solar panels in Australia?

When considering solar panels, it’s advisable to check for the latest reviews, certifications, and performance data. 

Here are some well-known solar panel manufacturers:

SunPower: 

SunPower is known for producing high-efficiency solar panels. Their panels are often sleek and suitable for residential and commercial installations.

LG Solar:

LG is a well-established electronics company producing high-quality solar panels. LG solar panels are known for their efficiency and reliability.

Jinko Solar: 

Jinko Solar is one of the world’s largest solar panel manufacturers. They offer a range of solar panels known for their cost-effectiveness and good performance.

Canadian Solar:

Canadian Solar is a global solar panel manufacturer that produces various panels with different specifications. They are often recognized for their combination of performance and affordability.

Trina Solar: 

Trina Solar is another major player in the solar industry. They produce a variety of solar panels with a focus on residential and commercial applications.

REC Solar: 

REC Solar is a European manufacturer known for producing 

High-quality solar panels. They are recognized for their commitment to sustainability and product warranties.

Seraphim Solar:

Seraphim Solar is a Chinese company that has gained recognition for its high-efficiency modules. They offer a variety of panels for different applications.

Longi Solar: 

Longi Solar is a Chinese company specialising in monocrystalline solar panels. They are known for their high-efficiency modules.

Q Cells: 

Q Cells is a solar panel manufacturer that produces a range of panels for residential, commercial, and utility-scale projects. They are known for their innovation and high-quality products.

29. How are solar panels installed?

Solar panel installation involves several steps, and hiring a professional solar installer for the job is typically recommended. Here is a general overview of the process:

  • Site Assessment
  • Permitting
  • Design and System Sizing
  • Equipment Procurement
  • Roof Preparation
  • Installation of Racking and Mounting System
  • Inverter Installation
  • Solar Panel Installation
  • Electrical Wiring
  • Testing and Commissioning
  • Connection to the Grid (if applicable)
  • Final Inspection and Approval

30. How to clean solar panels?

Cleaning solar panels is important to ensure optimal performance and maximise energy production. 

Here are steps you can take to clean solar panels effectively:

Check Manufacturer’s Guidelines: 

Before cleaning, check the manufacturer’s guidelines and warranty information for specific recommendations on cleaning and maintenance. Some manufacturers may provide specific instructions or precautions.

Safety First:

Ensure your safety by following proper safety procedures. If the solar panels are on the roof, use appropriate fall protection measures and avoid working on wet panels to prevent slipping.

Time Your Cleaning: 

Plan to clean the solar panels early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid cleaning them in direct sunlight when they are hot. Cleaning hot panels may lead to streaking due to rapid drying.

Use a Soft Brush or Sponge: 

For ground-mounted systems, use a soft brush or sponge with a long handle to reach the panels. If the panels are on the roof, you may use a soft brush attached to a long pole.

DIY Cleaning Solution: 

Mix a mild soap or dishwashing detergent with water in a bucket. Use a solution of one part soap to ten parts water. Avoid using abrasive or harsh chemicals, as they may damage the panels.

Apply Soapy Water: 

Dip the soft brush or sponge into the soapy water solution and gently scrub the surface of the solar panels. Focus on areas with visible dirt, bird droppings, or other contaminants.

Rinse with Clean Water: 

Rinse the solar panels thoroughly with clean water after scrubbing. A hose with a gentle spray nozzle can be used for this purpose. Make sure all soap residue is washed away.

Squeegee or Soft Cloth: 

Use a squeegee or a soft, non-abrasive cloth to remove excess water and ensure a streak-free finish. Make sure the cloth or squeegee is clean to avoid introducing scratches.

Repeat as Needed: 

Depending on your location and environmental conditions, you may need to clean your solar panels regularly. In areas with minimal dust and pollution, cleaning a few times a year may be sufficient. In more dusty or polluted environments, more frequent cleaning may be necessary.

Monitor Performance: 

After cleaning, monitor your solar system’s performance to ensure that energy production returns to expected levels. If you notice a significant drop in performance, it may indicate other issues that require attention.

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