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For more information on the installations and conversions that Orana Energy Systems Solahart Central West undertake, have a read through our frequently asked questions and their answers. These cover solar power systems and maintenance, government incentives and much more.
What happens with solar power at night or on overcast days?
Solar power systems only produce electricity when they are exposed to sunlight. At night you will not generate electricity from your solar modules - instead you will source electricity from the grid.
The performance of the solar power system is also affected by the weather. When there is thick cloud your home will draw energy from the grid.
Will my system continue to operate, even during a blackout?
No. Should a blackout occur, your solar power system will also stop producing any electricity and will restart once the grid is back online. This is a mandatory safety measure to protect anyone working on the disrupted grid system when it is blacked-out.
What are the Government incentives to switch to solar?
Small-scale Technology Certficates (STCs) are part of the government's commitment to renewable energy. STCs are created when you install and commission qualifying solar hot water, solar/wind power systems or residential solar power systems. Each STC represents 1 MWh (Megawatt hour) of energy produced. The number of STCs you are eligible for varies depends on the size of the system you install and your location.
What sort of maintenance is required?
Orana Energy Systems Solahart Central West use solar power products from Solahart. Our PV modules are manufactured to high quality standards and will require minimal maintenance for many years. Regular cleaning of PV modules will prolong their life and increase their performance in the long term.
What is the difference between a solar hot water system and a solar power system?
A solar hot water system uses the sun's radiation to heat water. A solar power system uses UV light from the sun, and converts it into electricity for use in the home or to be fed into the electricity grid.
Solar water heating is often the first step. Heating water with energy from the sun will dramatically reduce your consumption. The next step is to install solar power. The less energy your home requires, the less power you will need to produce from solar modules.
How does a solar power system work?
Solar power systems use photovoltaic (PV) cells to produce electricity from sunlight. Direct current (DC) electricity is produced and is converted into 240V alternating current (AC) using an inverter. This electricity can be used immediately within the home, while any excess can be fed into the National Electricity Grid.
What is the National Electricity Grid?
The National Electricity Grid is the network of wires that delivers electricity from generators to homes and businesses around Australia. When you install a solar power system you become a generator of clean renewable energy, which can be fed back into the grid during times of excess production.
What is an inverter?
An inverter is an electronic device that converts DC power generated by your solar panels to AC power at the correct voltage for regular use and supply to the grid. It also provides equipment protection and safety features.
What are the benefits of using a solar power system?
Electricity generated by a solar power system is used to offset or replace the power that would normally be purchased from your electricity supplier - thereby reducing your power bills and saving you money. This solar generated energy also avoids the harmful pollution caused by generating electricity from the burning of fossil fuels.
How much money can I save on my energy bills if I switch to solar power?
The savings are very attractive and continue as long as you use solar power. The amount you save depends on the current electricity usage of your household or business, the size of the solar system we install, orientation and inclination of the modules, as well as the feed-in tariff offered by your electricity supplier. As your local Central West Solahart consultant, we will assess these factors and give you an estimate of your savings.
Will I still have to use mains electricity?
Yes, because the inverter will only produce power when it is connected to the grid supply. The usage is significantly lower and results in lower energy bills.
Will my solar power system store energy for later use?
A grid-connected solar power system does not store energy for use during the night or overcast periods. When you generate more power than you need, the extra power is supplied back into the grid. At times when you need more energy than you are producing, you draw the extra from the grid.
We are currently investigating hybrid systems with the goal to providing these products in the future. All our systems are battery compatible, allowing excess power produced during the daylight hours to be battery stored and used overnight. By 2016/17 we will be able to supply a range of quality products to meet these needs.
How much roof space will I need for a solar power system?
Our smallest system requires a roof area of around 11 square metres. This will generate around 30% of the average family's energy needs each year. The more powerful the system, the more solar modules and roof space needed. Ask us about alternatives if you don't have enough roof space. The team at Orana Energy Systems Solahart Central West can assess your space and consumption, then recommend a suitable system for your needs.
Is the position on the roof important?
Yes. Solar power systems work best when placed on an unshaded, north-facing roof. It is possible to install a solar power system on an east or west-facing roof, however, this will reduce the performance of the system, but may suit your usage pattern better.
Can I increase the size of my system in the future?
This depends on your roof space and the size of the inverter. If you have sufficient roof space and additional capacity in the inverter you could increase the size of your system. If room permits you could add a second system to your roof.
Didn't find the information you were looking for? Contact Orana Energy System Solahart Central West's office for assistance.
Is natural gas available at my property?
If you are unsure whether you have a natural gas connection, speak to our team. We can review your closest gasline and advise you of the costs and process to connect your home to natural gas. Orana Energy Systems Solahart Central West can coordinate a new connection for residential, commercial or industrial customers if one is not currently available.
How do I arrange a natural gas connection or supply?
We can handle the entire process for you, just drop in or give us a call.
Can my LPG appliances be converted to suit a natural gas connection?
Yes, in the majority of cases you will not need to buy new appliances. Orana Energy Systems provide a complete conversion service to switch your gas appliances to natural gas.
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