At first glance, it seems straightforward: you install solar panels on your home, and your utility bill decreases. Typically, that’s true. However, there can be circumstances where your bill may not drop as much as you expected or, in rare instances, may even increase, despite utilizing solar power. Why might this happen?
You’re using more energy than before.
Perhaps you’re spending more time working from home, or you’ve installed a new pool. Even subtle lifestyle changes can substantially impact electricity consumption. Seasonal variations also come into play. For instance, during warmer months, you might use your air conditioning more frequently.
Luckily, there are tactics to avoid paying more even when your electricity usage increases. Many utilities are moving to time-of-use rates in several areas, charging more for electricity during peak demand times and less when demand is lower. By timing your high-energy tasks, like running the dishwasher or doing laundry during off-peak times, you’ll pay less. To find these periods, check your utility bill or contact your local utility.
You’ve recently experienced a significant life change.
From welcoming a new family member to buying an Electric Vehicle (EV), life changes can be exciting. However, they often mean an increase in energy consumption. For instance, a newborn might result in additional laundry loads, a change in thermostat settings, or late nights with lights on. Timing your dryer or EV charging during off-peak hours can help avoid a cost hike.
If you’re thinking about going solar, your consultant at Sea Bright Solar will discuss potential future changes that could impact your electricity usage. This assists in correctly sizing your system. Also, incorporating energy storage provides extra capacity for increasing your electricity usage later on.
Your utility rates have increased.
In addition to adopting time-of-use rates, utilities often change rates seasonally. It’s common for utilities to consider at least an annual rate increase. Over time, these increases can add up. It’s also not uncommon for utilities to add new fees to your bill.
While it’s impossible to entirely avoid these rate increases, keeping a close eye on your bill is always a good idea. Combining solar and storage can reduce your dependence on the grid (bye-bye blackouts!) and reserve energy for when it’s most needed. The Inflation Reduction Act has provided substantial long-term incentives for both solar and energy storage, making these clean energy solutions more affordable.
Despite these factors, solar panels offer a robust solution to maintain your energy costs low, stable, and predictable. With electricity rates on the rise, now is an excellent time to consider going solar.
Our team at Sea Bright Solar has extensive knowledge about utility rates and a wealth of experience in designing and installing home solar systems tailored to meet your family’s evolving needs. Try our FREE Solar + EV Calculator today to learn more.