SOLAR FAQs

How it Works

    Q. What does a typical solar power system consist of?

        A typical grid connected solar energy system consists of the following components:

        Panels – The panels convert sunlight into DC electricity and then feed this electricity to the inverter.

        Inverter – The inverter converts the electricity produced by your panels from DC electricity to AC electricity which is what your appliances use. The inverter also records the electricity produced and on some models, can communicate with your computer.

        Bi–directional meter – Your meter records energy drawn from and sent back to the grid.

        Mounting System – This is what connects your system to the roof.

    Q. Do I still need electricity from the grid?

        Yes. Your solar system generates electricity during peak daylight hours. Any electricity produced during this time that is not consumed will be sold back to the grid. During the night when your solar system is not working, you will draw electricity from the grid.

    Q. Can I monitor the solar system?

        Absolutely. All systems that Excel Power installs have the ability to be remotely monitored.

    Q. What happens on cloudy days?

        Your system will still produce electricity during cloudy days however production will be less than on sunny days.

    Q. If my energy requirements increase, can I upgrade the system?

        Yes. Additional panels may be added to existing systems where a larger inverter has been installed. Where a larger system is required that is not supported by the existing inverter, an additional inverter can be installed next to the existing one.

    Q. Does my system need maintenance?

        It helps.

        Your system is designed to be maintenance free but there are a few things we recommend you do to be absolutely sure your system is performing to its maximum potential for many years to come.
        We strongly recommend having a licensed CEC electrician (or us!) check your system once a year to ensure safe and continued operation. This will ensure a longevity and safe operation for many years as well as early detection of faults. Your electrician also will be aware of any legislation/safety changes to the industry and will be able to make these at this time. We also strongly recommend that you get your system cleaned once a year by a professional to remove any buildup of dust and debris on the panels.

    Q. Does shade affect my system’s output?

        Yes.

        Shading will dramatically affect your system's output. It is important to keep all trees around your house well-trimmed to ensure the system is not shaded, otherwise, your system will not meet its daily average output.

    Q. I had my system installed and it’s not producing the KWH per day I was expecting. Why is this?

        Your system's output will vary from day to day, month to month. It is important to understand that solar systems produce varying amounts at different times of the year and in different weather conditions.

        When working out what your system will produce it is necessary to understand ‘average daily output'. This is worked out over the course of a year. This means that over the course of the year your system will produce an average daily amount that can vary by up to 20% on any given day. During summer months when the days are long and there's a lot of sunshine, your system will produce more than the expected ‘average daily output'. During winter months when the days are shorter and there simply is not as much sun your system will produce less than the ‘average daily output'. This can also be affected by factors such as cloudy weather; rain and shade produced the trees. If you have bought your system during winter months or during cloudy weather don’t panic. For example, if you expected your ‘daily average output' is 5kwh (kilowatt hours) than during the winter months this may be as low as 5 kWh during the short and cold days.

        During summer months, it may go as high as 8 to 10 kWh. So, in a nutshell, it is important to
        remember to look at your system in the big picture and give it time to produce its ‘yearly average output' and you will find your energy saving will ‘average out' to its expected output.

The Equipment

    Q. Is the system installed by qualified electricians?

        Absolutely. Our expert installers are qualified licensed electricians and are our full-time employees - we don't subcontract our work and never will.

        Furthermore, Excel Power is accredited by the Clean Energy Council of Australia for the design and installation of your system. For more information, go to www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au

    Q. Is there any system maintenance involved?

        There is minimal system maintenance required over the life of the system. You may be required to hose down the panels from time to time to remove dirt. The panels will self clean when it rains. We can complete a panel clean and a system audit for a small fee.

    Q. Can I insure my system?

        Yes. The system can be covered under home and contents insurance. Contact your insurer for further details.

    Q. Do I need a new meter?

        If you have an old spinning disc meter, you will require a new bi-directional meter. Ask one of our sales consultants for the procedures involved and rates to change your meter.

The Environment

    Q. How will I be benefitting the environment?

        Producing energy via a solar energy system helps the environment by reducing the need to burn carbon emitting fossil fuels such as coal and gas.

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