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Frequently asked questions

Are there any Government rebates still available for solar power?

The current STC scheme is not a rebate as such, but it will provide you with an upfront discount on your solar power system. STCs are a Federal Government scheme.

The State Government pays you for excess electricity that is sent back to the grid. You can read more on our STCs and Feed-In Tariffs page.

How long can I expect my solar system to last?

The majority of panels are guaranteed to be producing a minimum of 80% of their original output after 25 years; therefore you can expect your solar panels to last at least 25 years+. inverters generally have a 10 – 15 year lifespan so you may have to allow for one inverter replacement during the lifetime of your system.

How long will it take to pay for itself?

The average payback period is between five to six years and varies depending on your usage patterns. City to Surf Solar+ can tailor a financial report unique to your situation to show you your expected savings, payback period and return of investment. Visit the what size system for me? page to enter your details for your personalised financial statement.

Once installed, is there any maintenance required on my system?

Regular maintenance will ensure your system is always working to its full potential. If you do not feel comfortable getting on your roof to clean the panels yourself, City to Surf Solar+ offer a maintenance schedule where we clean down your panels and check that all other components of your system are in good working order.

What is the metering process following my installation?

Following the installation of your solar power system, we organise an Independent Electrical Inspector to inspect the system and issue a Certificate of Electrical Safety(CoES). We email the CoES and some other paperwork to your retailer and CC you so you have copies and know that it has been sent. Your retailer then raises a service order with Powercor to re-configure your meter. They will also get in contact with you to give you your electricity rates including the feed-in rate and also require you to accept the Powercor charge to re-configure your meter. Powercor will then re-configure your meter within three to eight weeks, depending on accessibility and location. Powercor have further information on their metering charges on their website. You can also contact your retailer directly for information on metering charges.

Can I power my Air Conditioner with solar power?

Now that there is a shift away from gas to renewables there are a few new products labelled Solar Air Conditioning. Through our own testing, rather than an independent system with a solar component tacked on we have proven that a regular high efficiency air conditioner coupled with solar PV, whether you are seeking to introduce air conditioning or you already have it, incorporating PV to offset or increasing the system size is the most efficient and cost effective counterbalance for that method of cooling or heating.

Can I use solar power to  power my electric hot water system?

Currently there are a few options available with regard to powering your electric hot water:

● Off peak – timed by your meter

● All day – using excessive amounts of electricity

● Via a timer – giving control of when your water heats up back to you.

If you have solar power you can utilise this to offset your water heating costs by controlling when you heat your water. Maximum control can be obtained through a combination of equipment to increase the benefit of solar power. This means that through the flick of a switch you can alternate between predetermined periods of day or night time water heating. This takes advantage of spells of prolonged good weather to pay for your water heat so that you don’t have to. You also have the power to switch back to night time heating during times of less than ideal weather.

Will my solar power system store power?

To be able to store power you need a grid back-up system. As well as the usual components, a grid back-up system also includes batteries and a back-up unit. Currently the high costs of the batteries makes grid back-up cost prohibitive for most households. Over time, however, these costs will come down and grid back-up will become more affordable for the average household. We will keep you updated with any changes on our news page.

For more on City to Surf Solar+ see our about us page. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further queries.

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  • Supporters of:Give Where You Live
  • Accreditation:Clean Energy Council
  • Members of:Geelong Sustainability GroupATA
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