How to make the most of your solar PV system?

Day and night electricity usage

The best way to ensure you save money with your solar PV system, is to use the electricity generated by your solar panels. The electricity you use during the day will come directly from your solar panels, whereas the electricity you use at night will be imported from the grid.

The average price of an imported kWh is approximately four times higher than the Feed-in Tariffs you receive per kWh you generate and/or export to the grid. This means that the biggest revenue will come from decreasing the amount of electricity you import from the grid and have to pay for through your energy supplier.

Solar panels only produce electricity when there is daylight. This means it is advisable to use most of your electricity during the day, rather than at night. The electricity you use at night, will be imported from the grid and will be charged on your energy bill.

How to increase your daytime electricity usage?

The average consumer uses approximately 45% to 50% of their total electricity consumption during the daytime. Increasing that percentage, and thereby making the investment in solar panels more beneficial, is a matter of changing your usage habits. Here are some tips on how to increase your daytime electricity usage:

  • Schedule the use of home appliances during the day instead of the evening;
  • Try to run high-wattage appliances on sunny days instead of cloudy ones;
  • Schedule high-wattage appliances like washing machines and dishwashers to run during the day;
  • Recharge electrical devices during the day;
  • Where it is unavoidable to use some appliances at night, such as lights, you may wish to replace high-wattage spotlights with warm white LED lights.

Additional devices

Besides changing your usage habits, there are also other options to maximise your consumption of solar energy:

  • Installing a diverter alongside your solar PV system:

    This device will detect when your solar panels generate more electricity than you consume. Instead of exporting this surplus of energy to the grid, the diverter will redirect this energy to heat the water in your immersion heater. Not everyone will have an immersion heater, but if you do, this can increase your annual savings and earnings.

    Through the group buying scheme, you will also be able to purchase a diverter at an additional cost. If you want to add a diverter to the solar PV system you purchase, you can indicate this before you accept the personalised offer. The cost will automatically be added to the total price of the offer you accept, but it will not be calculated into your estimated annual savings and earnings and return on investment.

  • Adding a battery storage system:

    This saves the energy that is generated by your solar panels, meaning you can use the solar energy whenever you want, instead of only during the day. At first sight battery storage seems like a good investment. However, battery storage is still very expensive, which makes it less financially appealing for many residents.

    Our current assessment is that most residents would be spending more on the battery storage than they would save on their electricity usage. For this reason, we do not include a battery storage system as a standard element of our Solar Together offer. However, you can always ask the winning supplier after the auction. They will be able to advise you about purchasing a battery storage system.