Solar Power in Coffs Harbour: Everything you need to know!

Almost 30% of households in Coffs Harbour have already taken the leap to Solar Power, according to data from the Australian Photovoltaic Institute. This article explores the benefits of solar from a factual perspective and provides the basics you need to know before getting quotes from your home.

Solar panels in sunny Coffs can generate plenty of solar power!

Coffs Harbour NSW Solar Power

As an annual average, each square metre of rooftop in Coffs Harbour receives around 5.2 hours of sun per day–although this number will be higher in summer and lower in winter, and accordingly so will the output of a solar power system.

To work out how much a solar system will produce per day you need to multiply the kilowatt (kW) rating of the solar panel system by 5.2 and then reduce by a efficiency loss factor typically around 20-25%. We have done the math for you in the below table assuming efficiency loss of 25%.

Solar System Size Average Daily Output in Coffs Harbour
3kW 11.7kWh
5kW 19.5kWh
6.6kW 25.7kWh
10kW 39kWh


Sounds good! But how does this solar energy save me money?

A solar panel system can save you money in 2 key ways:

  1. Self consumption – Energy produced by the solar power system will be used first in your house and any remaining energy required will be drawn seamlessly from the grid. The amount of solar energy you can directly use in your home will reduce the units power you would have otherwise paid to your electricity retailer. This is referred to as ‘solar self consumption‘.
  2. Surplus energy generated by your system can be sold back to the grid – You will be able to sell surplus energy back to the grid for a “solar feed-in tariff“. Generally the rates offered by electricity retailers are less than half the rates you are buying electricity at, so in most cases it doesn’t make a great deal of sense to oversize your system.

In Coffs Harbour you are also subject to the connection rules of Essential Energy – the company who owns the electricity poles and wires. In rural areas surround Coffs their limit is 3kW for the inverter meaning you can get up to 3.99kW of Solar panels, while 5kW inverters with 6.6kW systems are possible in urban areas. It may be possible to go larger with export controllers and with 3-phase connections upon application.

Use the Solar Choice Payback Calculator to determine what size Solar System is best for your homeSolar Choice Payback Calculator Wollongong




Federal Government rebates for solar are available in Coffs Harbour

The federal government offers what are effectively up-front discounts on solar PV system installation costs under the small-scale portion of Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET). The amount of the incentive depends on your location – sunnier locales receive a bigger discount.

Coffs Harbour is technically in the second sunniest ‘zone’ under the scheme, along with the rest of New South Wales. As an example see the below system sizes and estimates of the rebate they would receive as of 2020:

Solar System Size STC Rebate*
1.5kW Solar System $803
3kW Solar System $1643
5kW Solar System $2774
10kW Solar System $5548

* Estimates taken from Greenbank on 30 March 2020 – it is a live market so prices are always changing

This rebate is generally claimed by your installer on your behalf so you essentially only pay the difference. Bear in mind that the quantity of certificates (STCs) each project generates is designed to reduce each year on 1st January until the scheme is phased out altogether in 2030.

Feed in tariffs in Coffs Harbour, NSW

Feed in tariffs (amount you can sell solar power for) in Coffs are offered individually by electricity retailers with no mandatory minimum in place. Current offers range between 6c per kWh to as high as 21c per kWh for some bonus sign up rates. You can assess whats available given your situation using the Government’s comparison tool – Generally speaking oversizing your solar system to earn a feed in tariff will always reduce your return on investment – so if you want to optimise your return, we recommend using our solar power system ROI calculator to determine the best system size to apply for.

The cost of solar power in Coffs Harbour has plummeted over the last decade!

Solar Choice publishes average cost of solar panel installations in each of Australia’s capital cities based on a large database of solar installers across Australia – this info used by the Australian Government and Bloombergs as a key price benchmark. See below graph of historial pricing for Sydney which provides a useful guide to installation costs in Coffs Harbour, or you can refer to the full Solar Price Index here for a breakdown by system size and by state.


Solar Panel Prices Sydney

How can I find the best deal on Solar Power in Coffs Harbour?

Solar Choice, as Australia’s free online solar comparison tool, connects solar customers with the best installers who service their area. Our team has pre-vetted a network of installers across Australia ensuring each installer has all the required qualifications and are using reputable products. We have also been collecting feedback on our network of installers for over 10 years.


Compare quotes from up to 7 pre-vetted installers in your area now.
Since 2008 our knowledge and sophisticated software has allowed over 300,000 Australian households and businesses to make a well-informed choice on their solar & battery installer.


Jeff Sykes