Thinking about installing a solar power system in Warrnambool, Victoria? This article is an overview of (nearly) everything you need to know about going solar there, including solar system prices, solar system power output, and what size system you might need. Solar Choice’s database will also allow you to easily compare the offerings & prices from solar system installers in Warrnambool.
Should you install solar panels in Warrnambool?
Retail electricity prices have skyrocketed across Australia in recent years, and Australia’s price are now among the most expensive in the world. Warrnambool is no exception. This trend is not likely to be reversed in the near future, and are almost certain to continue escalating in the longer-term. This trend has many investigating ways to insulate themselves against future price increases, and rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) systems have proved to be one of the most popular options for doing so.
The cost of installing a solar system has dropped drastically in the past few years, thanks mainly to an increase of global solar module output. Of course, federal government incentives for solar panels through the renewable energy target (RET) have also helped to improve the investment-worthiness of solar PV technology, making it more accessible than ever for ordinary households & businesses. Right now, the discount available through the RET works out to be approximately 71c off of every installed watt of solar power–or around $3,550 for a 5kW solar system. This discount is ordinarily automatically worked into final solar PV system prices by installers.
Are solar panels worth it without a feed-in tariff?
The reduction of Victoria’s solar feed-in tariff has doubtless left many Victorians wondering if solar power is still worth the investment. Solar electricity is automatically used by appliances in a home/business first, and excess is automatically exported to the electricity grid. Previously, with a feed-in tariff in place, there was a reward for exporting solar power, Now, however, the utility buyback rate is only about 6c per kilowatt-hour (kWh)–compared to upwards of 20c/kWh for electricity that you purchase from the grid.
Simply put, this means that ‘self-consuming’ a unit of solar power could save a solar system owner as much as 4x as much money as exporting it would. So self consumption is essential to get the most out of a solar PV system, and systems should be sized so as to just meet daytime electricity demand for the home or business in question (see below).
Are batteries or energy storage an option for me?
One way to increase solar self-consumption is to have an energy storage device installed. Although not yet widely available in Australia, energy storage solutions are expected to become more common in the coming years. Energy storage technologies can potentially increase self-consumption by 50%+, depending on their size and how energy is used throughout the day. (Solar Choice now includes energy storage options in its Solar Quote Comparisons when they are available.)
Solar PV system output in Warrnambool
There are many factors that come into play when it comes to determining a solar system’s output, but the the upper limit depends first and foremost on the amount of sunlight available in a location on a given day. All of Australia is blessed with plentiful sun, and Warrnambool sees its fair share. 1 kilowatt (kW) of installed solar PV capacity in Warrnambool should produce about 3.5 kilowatt-hours (kWh, or units) of solar power per day. This figure will of course be higher in the summer and lower in the winter, as the sun moves through the sky and the days grow and shrink in length.
Some of the most common solar system sizes in Australia can be found below, followed by an estimate of their output if installed optimally (orientation, tilt angle, and quality components) in Warrnambool. For reference, an ordinary 3-person home in Australia uses about 20kWh of electricity per day.
1.5kW solar system: 5.25kWh
2kW solar system: 7kWh
3kW solar system: 10.5kWh
4kW solar system: 14kWh
5kW solar system: 17.5kWh
10kW solar system: 35kWh
How to choose the right system size for your home or business in Warrnambool
As mentioned above, those considering going solar in Warrnambool should make sure that their system will not produce too much excess electricity, aiming to keep self-consumption rates at 70-80% of solar system production. Homes and businesses can determine their average daily electricity usage by looking at a recent electricity bill, which should have data from the recent month as well as previous ones. Daytime electricity usage might be slightly more difficult to work out, but you should know more or less whether the bulk of your usage occurs during daylight hours or when it is dark.
If you’re interested in learning more, you can speak to a Solar Choice broker for free and impartial advice about system sizing by calling 1300 78 72 73.
Compare solar power installers & prices in Warrnambool
Solar Choice has assisted tens of thousands of homes and businesses in selecting a solar power system that is right for their needs. If you’re located in Warrnambool, Victoria, you can request a free Solar Quote Comparison today by filling your details into the form to the right of this page. Alternatively, you can speak to one of our brokers on 1300 78 72 73. Your Solar Quote Comparison will include pricing & component information from a number of installers who operate in the Warrnambool area.
(Top image: View from Pickering Point, Warrnambool – by Crikey3454 via Wikipedia)
© 2013 Solar Choice Pty Ltd