Australia’s sunny climate lends itself to a desire to tap solar power for your electricity needs. For some seniors, a high power bill may be a bit hard on the pocket and require the purchase and installation of a solar power system. One way to get there is through an Equity Unlock Loan of the kind offered by ASAG.
A solar power system would basically comprise five components:
- Solar panels. Made from monocrystalline or polycrystalline materials, the panels are the most common element of the system, mounted on the roof to capture radiation from the sun. However, they will have to be oriented against the orbital track of the sun during the day for maximum performance. There are solar panel arrays designed for residential roofs and others for commercial establishments, with warranties factored in.
- Inverters. The inverters are devices that convert the DC current generated by the solar panels into AC power for the property’s electric grid. They are available in either string inverters (which manage the current for the whole system) or microinverters (which are installed for each solar panel).
- Mounting. The mounting will be the attachment racks for the solar panels to be bolted on to the roof. Your preferred solar contractor would be capable of setting them up on the roof and connecting the wiring into the inverter without compromising the shingles or having loose conduits. However, the roof itself should be strong enough to handle the weight of the entire array.
- Batteries. Many solar power systems will often have batteries attached to store the generated energy. This is especially true in properties that are off-grid or have minimal reliance on an existing grid.
- Consumption monitor. The consumption monitor keeps track of variables such as the power output generated by the panels, your energy consumption, and the charge/discharge levels for the batteries.
Solar power — capability
Choosing the solar power system for your home requires evaluating your overall electricity needs, like are you seeking to lower your bills from the local network or preferring to go off the grid? The government’s Energy Made Easy calculator can also give you an idea of the energy expenses of typical households in your area.
Solar power systems range from small 1.5-kilowatt affairs that have four panels to 10kW systems with 27 panels. As pricing estimates go, 1.5kW solar systems may run from $2.5k to $4k while on the far end, 10kW rigs range from $8k to $13k. This will depend on the components as chosen through your solar contractor. The Clean Energy Council has a complete list of approved solar power contractors.
Solar power — output and pension
Some experts contend that solar power generation may affect the overall amount you receive under Age Pension once you enter coverage. Retailers pay customers who have solar units feed-in tariffs (FiT) – measured by cents per kilowatt-hour – if the power generated was more than the household used at all during the day, meaning the excess is fed into the grid instead at night. However, when the FiT is furnished you as cash by cheque, that classifies as income and might affect the pension payment.
To avoid that danger, you must arrange with your utility provider to have the FiT programmed as credits to offset your next electricity bill. A solar battery installed from the get-go also works by storing the excess power for ready use at night or during overcast days.
The ASAG Equity Unlock Loan
Australia’s federal and state governments are making an effort to attract more Australians to tap solar energy for home use. These include Small-scale Technology Certificates and FiTs, plus certain benefits your state or territory will outline, with their own separate requirements to account for.
To learn more about using your equity to finance a solar power system for your Home Improvements through the ASAG Equity Unlock Loan, call ASAG at 1300 002 724 or drop an email at email@example.com.
You can also get started by using our tool below to assess your available equity.