Why Is My Electric Bill So High When I Have Solar Panels
You installed solar panels to lower your electric cost or eliminate your power altogether. You notice that you’re not paying less for power after a while; you may be paying more. “Why Is My Electric Bill So High When I Have Solar Panels?” you must be asking.
If you want to lower your electric bill with solar panels, change how you use electricity or catch the problem early. Here are some of the most common reasons people use too much energy and ways to lower electric costs. If you want your solar panels to pay for themselves or want to avoid this problem in the future, read through these.
Causes For Power Bill To Be High If You Have Solar Panels
Take Care of External Factors
Of course, you can’t change the weather or the number of hours of sunlight where you live. But there are some things that you can do.
First, remember that solar panels make power when they are in the sun. Putting them somewhere sunny is essential to get the most out of them. If your roof could use some work, think about getting solar panels that you can move around.
Second, solar cells work best when they are clean. So, wipe down often to get rid of any dirt or other things that might block the sun’s rays. Need help getting the solar cells clean? We’ve gone into more depth about it here.
Also, use tools with less energy during the day and bulbs with lower wattages at night. Of course, ensure all lights and machines are off when you’re not using them.
Increased Energy Consumption
Even if solar panels are correctly installed, you can still use too much electricity. If your solar panels aren’t coming down your bill, it could be because:
- It’s making less power than you’re using.
- When the panels aren’t making power at night, you’re using too much.
- Too many things are plugged in. You leave lights and machines on when you don’t need them.
- You’re not using light bulbs or machines that use less energy.
Wrong Reading On the Electric Meter
It would help to read your electric meter to find out how much energy you use. On the other hand, electric meters can give wrong readings, usually because of human mistakes or broken equipment. It’s also important to catch inaccurate meter readings early because they can lead to higher power bills.
If you keep an eye on how much electricity you use and check the accuracy of your meter once a month, you can lower the chance of getting a false number.
Loss of Production
If your usage hasn’t changed much, your panels aren’t making enough. One reason for this could be a soiling loss, which means the panels are dirty or the tools have a problem. Your tracking software should show you how well each panel is working. If there is a problem, call your installer.
Natural events like wildfire smoke, heat waves, and ancient cloudy weather can also cause solar output to drop.
More Bigger System
Since your new system might not be able to offset all of your yearly electricity use, it’s possible it needs to be bigger, and you can’t get your electricity price below zero.
Not Good Time
In many places, net metering periods go from March to February. The goal is to build up credits in the spring and summer to compensate for the lower production in the autumn and winter. Your system won’t produce enough to lower your electricity bill since it was put in the autumn. You also will still need to get net metering credits.
That means you’ll still have to pay for a few months of power before your system starts building credit in the spring.
If you’ve already done all these things and your bill is still higher than the normal one you used to get, you need to look at things outside your home. Several outside factors can lower the output of your solar panels and, in turn, your energy bill. Besides the amount of sun and shade, these other things are essential:
- Roof Slope
- The Direction Your House Faces
- Dirty solar Panels
Solutions to Electricity Overconsumption
Understanding and managing your electricity consumption is crucial, especially when incorporating solar panels into your energy strategy. Here are some user-friendly tips and solutions to help lower your electric bill post-solar installation:
Optimize Panel Placement:
Ensure your solar panels are in a sunny location to maximize electricity production. If your roof could be better, consider using portable solar panels that can be moved around. Keep the panels clean to enhance efficiency by regularly removing dirt and debris.
Install a Solar Battery:
Combat high electric bills during heavy usage periods, such as summer air conditioning, by installing a solar battery. These batteries store excess energy for later use, providing a constant power source. They also offer backup power in case of outages, all while reducing your reliance on the grid.
Expand Your Solar Panel System:
Consider installing additional panels if your current solar panel system needs to be adequately sized for your home. Ensure proper orientation and location to maximize benefits. Portable solar panels can also be a solution for adjusting to your energy needs.
Time Your Electricity Usage:
Synchronize your electricity consumption with your solar system’s peak production times. Utilize energy-intensive appliances during daylight hours when solar panels generate more power. Consider using energy-efficient appliances and lower-wattage bulbs during the evening, and always turn off unnecessary lights and devices.
Consult a Local Solar Contractor:
If you suspect issues with your solar system, contact a local solar energy contractor. These experts can assess your system, ensuring correct sizing, optimal placement, and proper functionality. Avoid tampering with the system yourself to prevent potential hazards.
Value of Solar Power:
Despite initial costs, solar panels add significant value to your property. In some areas, like Texas, solar panels can increase home value by up to $15,000. Additionally, homes with solar installations have a 20% higher likelihood of selling. The long-term benefits and positive impact on property value make solar power worthwhile.
Implementing these user-friendly strategies allows you to optimize your solar panel system, reduce your electric bill, and contribute to a more sustainable energy future.
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