Here are two little words which will make an incredible difference to the amount of money you save with solar power... Load shifting. It’s a surprisingly simple concept that, for some reason, is so under-discussed by solar energy companies. Load shifting refers to re-adjusting your energy usage so that you consume more electricity during the day.
So, why load shift?
Well, it all starts with another truth that not a lot of solar energy companies highlight… Solar panels and inverters don’t work at night.
This means that all the electricity you use when the sun goes down is actually being derived from the grid. Even if you’re being credited for the excess solar power you produce during the day, buying it back at night time from your energy retailer at full price is not ideal.
Load shifting is great because it means you’re actually putting your solar power to use and it’s especially ideal for homeowners who aren’t at home during the day and predominantly use electricity at night.
Examples of effective load shifting
Hopefully, by now, you’re getting excited about the prospect of load shifting, but you may still be scratching your head for examples of how to do it.
Try these simple tricks to get started:
- In summer, set your air conditioner on a timer to cool down the house before you get home, rather than pumping it at night time and relying on grid electricity.
- Do the same in winter with your heating. Time your heater to warm things up during the day before you get home.
- Put a timer on your dishwasher and let dishes clean during the day.
- If you own a pool, install a timer on the pump and filter to work during the day.
- If your hot water is electric, shower in the morning rather than at night.
- Save electricity-intensive processes (such as clothes washing and drying) for the weekend when you’re home during the day.
So, if you’re considering solar power and wondering how you’ll most effectively reap the financial advantages of installing, consider the sacred technique of load shifting.
And, if you already have solar power installed, transfer more of your electricity usage to the day and see what happens.