Go Renewable

Solar Energy

The Far North Queensland climate lends itself perfectly to the production of solar energy. It is an investment that will likely pay for itself in less than 7 years and save 80% or more in emissions!

How to Choose a Solar Provider

With so many solar providers available, it can be difficult to decide which business to go with so here are a few tips to help you choose a solar provider:

Accreditation

The Clean Energy Council Approved Solar Retailer program was authorised by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to create a higher standard of service in the solar industry.  Providers who are approved have made a commitment to comply with a Code of Conduct and if in breach may be subject to action by the Clean Energy Council.  For this reason, we recommend choosing an Approved Solar Retailer.

 

  Quotes

Shopping around is a great way to get the best deal. With the quotes you receive, you want to be sure that it clearly details what equipment is included, the system design, expected energy generation, product and service warranties. When comparing quotes, ensure you are comparing equipment of similar quality and you are completely satisfied with the design you have been provided with.

 

Testimonials

Asking your potential solar provider for testimonials from recent customers is a great way to confirm that you are dealing with a reputable solar energy provider.

 

Support Local

By choosing a local solar energy provider, you will usually find it takes the hassle out of contacting them for any warranty issues, cleaning or upgrades in the future. It also means that more of your investment is kept within the Cairns community.

Solar Energy Considerations

If you are new to the concept of solar energy then you may find the following information useful to help you choose the right system to suit your needs.

Requirements

The size of the solar energy system you require will depend on your average household usage.  A quality solar energy provider will work with you to determine your requirements. 

They will take into account the following:

Location and direction of the house and available roof space

Previous power usage (details of previous power bills)

Your usage habits (times of day/seasonal)

Future plans (growing family/adding a pool/switching from gas to electric/electric cars etc)

Your budget

Battery or Grid connect system

Based on the above information, your solar energy provider will come up with a quote tailored to your needs.  To get you started, we’ve created a table to give you a rough idea of what size system you might need and how much it’s likely to cost.

Current Average Daily Usage (KWHs) Recommended System Size (KW) Approximate System Costs (AUD)
15-25 6.6 $5,000 – $9,000
25-40 8 $7,000 – $11,000
40-55 10 $8000 – $12,000
55-80 13 $10,000 – $14,000
80-100 15 $13,000 – $18,000
Current Avg Daily Usage (KWHs) Recomm System Size (KW) Approx System Costs (AUD)
15-25 6.6 $5,000 – $9,000
25-40 8 $7,000 – $11,000
40-55 10 $8000 – $12,000
55-80 13 $10,000 – $14,000
80-100 15 $13,000 – $18,000

The above pricing is indicative only and for mid – top end products.  Beware of using cheap alternatives as you may not be getting quality solar equipment that will ultimately cost you more in the long run.  The way you use your electricity may also impact what size system you will require.

Batteries

You may like to consider including a storage battery in your solar energy system. Having the ability to store power generated on sunny days for use during the evening or rainy days can drastically reduce your power bills and your carbon emissions. Solar storage batteries range in price from $4000 to $20,000 depending on the size required and brands available. It’s a good idea to work out the approximate savings this will give you compared with the warranty period on the battery to ensure you will be getting great value for money.

Solar Panels

Your solar provider may refer to Tier 1 panels.  This is a rating given by an independent industry analyst regarding the quality of the solar panels.  We recommend only buying Tier 1 panels as these are the best quality panels on the market.  These panels will generally last longer and produce more power overall than Tier 2 or 3 panels.  Some solar providers who quote very cheap solar packages will usually use lower quality panels so be sure to check this before purchasing.

Inverters

An inverter is the device that converts the electricity from your solar panels in a DC format and converts it to the AC format that is usable inside your home.  We highly recommend choosing a quality inverter backed by an excellent manufacturer warranty.  If you choose to have solar battery storage, this may require you to have a different type of inverter so take this into account to ensure you have a system suitable for your future needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get government solar rebates?

Most solar providers will incorporate any applicable government solar rebates into their quotes and organise the paperwork for you.  Be sure to ask your potential solar provider about this before purchase.

How often will I need to get my solar panels cleaned?

It’s advisable to clean your solar panels every 6 to 12 months.  Your panels may require cleaning more frequently if you have a lot of dust, dirt or debris that settles on your roof.

What happens to my solar on rainy/cloudy days?

If you are connected to the grid with your system and your solar panels are not producing enough output to cover your power usage, any additional power will be drawn from the grid and added to your power bill.

How much CO2 emissions will I save by installing solar energy at home?

A 5Kw solar system will save approximately 8.6 Tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.  That’s the equivalent of planting 395 trees per year or 54 acres of forest over 25 years!

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