Be Cool. Save Money. Go Solar.
What was that Mr. Weatherman? It’s going to be in the triple digits across San Diego county next week, and if I want to stay nice and cool I’ll have to take a huge hit to my electric bill? That, in fact, will be the reality of our scorching San Diego climate next week… Triple. Digit. Heat!
How can I stay cool AND save money?
The answer to that question is solar energy. If your summer electric bills are costing you $100, $200, $500, then you’re missing out on the opportunity to dramatically reduce your utility bill. Going solar is easier than people assume and there are many financing options to get just about anyone approved. The process doesn’t have to be a headache, like buying a car or a home. Not to mention, the return on investment is much greater than purchasing a vehicle or home.
Here are some key benefits of going solar:
- A typical return on investment happens within 4-6 years.
- Increases the value of your home.
- Solar systems have a life expectancy of 25+ years, ultimately putting tens of thousands of dollars back into your pocket.
- You get to take advantage of federal incentives (currently a 30% tax credit).
- Luxury of running your A/C without having to worry about huge electric bills.
- You’re helping the environment by reducing your carbon footprint.
Lock-in legacy rates before December 1, 2017
One thing we’ve been touching on for the last few months has been locking in legacy rates before they disappear. In order to lock-in the legacy rate structure, you have to have your system installed and activated before 12/01/2017. This is a very important date if you’re looking to get the most from your investment — this will have the greatest ROI.
Here’s a rundown of key dates ahead:
- New solar customers installed and activated between 07/29/2017 and 12/01/2017 have the option of locking in legacy time-of-use (DR-SES) rates for 5 years from the date their system was activated. Customers installed and activated after 12/01/2017 will not have this rate option available to them.
- New solar customers installed and activated between 12/02/2017 and 03/30/2018 have the option of locking in tier-1 pricing for 5 years. This pricing will be based off the current tier-1 rates when your system was activated.
- New solar customers installed and activated after 03/30/2018 will default to whatever SDG&E’s current rate structure is. At which point, the grandfathering of legacy options will not be available.
New Peak Period of 4 p.m to 9 p.m.
While other solar companies have been stating that the peak period will not switch from the current 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., we have been letting SDG&E customers know about the proposed switch to 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. As of 8/24/2017, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approved SDG&E to shift the peak period to the proposed 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. This goes to show that not every solar company in San Diego is looking out for their customers and/or customers to be.
What does the peak period shift mean for me?
After installing solar throughout California over the last 15 years, the energy produced by PV systems has greatly reduced that 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. demand. Because of that large reduction in demand during those hours, the peak period, when the grid is seeing the most demand, has shifted to later in the evening (when solar systems are producing little to nothing).
- This will greatly affect customers who consume a bulk of their energy in evening — huge increase in your monthly utility bill.
- SDG&E will be hitting customers with higher-priced energy for electricity used between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m.
- Non-solar customers and solar customers alike will have to be more mindful of their evening energy usage.