How Your Electric Bill is Calculated When You Have Solar Panels
It seems like an impossible dream: eliminating your energy bill. Is it possible?
Going solar is a great way to help your wallet and the world at the same time.
Solar panels allow you to reduce your carbon footprint, increase your home’s resale value, and drive down your energy bill.
Of course, there’s a difference between a low bill and no bill.
If you’re wondering, “Will I still receive an electric bill if I have solar panels?” you aren’t alone. Let’s look at how to make that dream come true.
Just Picture It: Getting a Negative Electric Bill in the Mail
First things first: as long as your home is connected to the electric grid, you’ll probably receive a bill in the mail. But whether you get the piece of paper isn’t as important as what’s on it.
In a perfect world, the Balance Due would show a big fat zero. Better yet, imagine a negative balance, meaning the power company owes you!
Believe it or not, it happens. Some homeowners who invest substantially in solar power systems for their homes are able to completely wipe out their electric bill. What’s more, many utility providers offer a credit for homeowners who produce a surplus of solar power during peak usage hours. If that happens, you could end up with a negative bill.
Of course, to make that vision a reality, you’ll need to have a significant solar power system, and you’ll also need to be mindful of how much energy you use (and when you use it).
So will you still receive an electric bill if you have solar panels? The answer is technically yes, but how big that bill is really depends on you!
For Most People, Reduction — Not Elimination — Is the Goal.
Achieving a zero-dollar (or negative) balance may be achievable, but it isn’t necessarily easy. But that isn’t really what most people are after when they install solar panels. Rather, the primary draw is substantially reducing your monthly energy bill, even if you don’t quite eliminate it.
Every solar power system is different. Each homeowner is different. We all have different energy needs and patterns of usage. Those patterns and needs can change from month to month. So while you may still receive an electric bill, solar panels will consistently reduce the balance due. Month after month, those savings add up.
Don’t Install More Solar Panels Than You Need
It’s easy to go overboard, and there are certainly solar power companies out there that will sell you more than you need. But there is a cost to installing larger solar power systems, so it’s important to ask yourself: how much do I really need?
To answer that question, it’s helpful to first clarify your goal. Do you want a $0 bill, or do you just want to meaningfully reduce your monthly energy expense?
At REenergizeCO, we believe in a customized approach to solar panel installation. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer. The right solar power system is one that has been narrowly tailored to your specific usage needs and billing goals.
The Tax Factor
No discussion about the cost-saving benefits of going solar would be complete without mentioning the federal tax credits available to solar adopters, as well as the various state and local tax credits available in many areas.
Did you know that 2019 is the final year for receiving the full 30% federal tax credit for installing solar panels in Colorado?
If you’d like to learn more about the various tax credits and incentives that might be available in your area, we encourage you to contact our office.
In Summary: Will I Still Receive an Electric Bill If I Have Solar Panels?
While you may still receive an energy bill each month, adding a solar power system can help you bring that bill down substantially — time after time.
If you’re really energy-conscious, you could even take steps to reduce your electric bill to $0.00 or below.
Ultimately, how much you owe the power company each month is up to you. Tips for reducing your usage include:
- Upping the size of your solar power system
- Keeping lights off when you aren’t using them
- Air-drying clothes instead of running the dryer so often
- Handwashing dishes
- Limiting your hot-water showers to shorter periods of time
- Adjusting the temperature of your hot-water heater
- Keeping your home at a stable, steady temperature all day
- Adding or improving your home insulation & sealing off air leaks
- Schedule a Home Energy Audit in Denver or Fort Collins, CO
- Want to learn more about how to reduce your energy costs in Colorado?
REenergizeCO is a Denver-based home energy company that helps homeowners and businesses diagnose their energy efficiency problems and then correct them cost-effectively.
We offer full-service solar power installation services, as well as a variety of other easy and affordable solutions for lowering your monthly energy bill.
A good first step is simply to schedule a home energy audit with our team of experts. We can determine where and how your home is losing energy, and we’ll identify the most cost-effective ways to turn things around.