Solar for business

Why choose solar?

Remember that solar generates when the sun is shining and if you can use the power at that time then you get it straight from your roof – for free!

You can register to get three quotes from carefully selected suppliers on our solar power supplier panel. All suppliers on the panel have been thoroughly checked out and components have been tested for Australian standards by the Alternative Technology Association (ATA).

Most businesses can benefit from solar as they use electricity during the day – when the sun is shining!

What size do I need?

Finding the system that best suits your needs will depend on:

  • How much electricity your business uses (daily usage)
  • Your roof size, its orientation and shade
  • The types of machinery and equipment your business uses
  • Your budget

What other costs may be incurred?

If you don’t already have a smart meter then you will need to get one installed, which typically costs between $350 and $450. Older buildings may also require an upgrade of the electricity meter board, which will cost around $800.

What if I don’t own the building or it’s a shared roof?

Depending on your lease arrangement solar may still be a good option for you. Call one of the Positive Charge experts to see how this might work for your business, on 1300 23 68 55.

Could the panels be damaged in a storm?

It is very unlikely that the weather can damage your panels. The panels are made with a low-iron tempered glass face and are specifically designed and certified to withstand large hailstones.  The aluminium frames are anodized for extra durability and long life.

Do I need to clean or maintain the panels?

Most people leave it to the rain to wash the panels but if there have been extended periods of dry weather it is worth considering giving the panels a clean. It is advisable to wipe the solar panels down with warm water perhaps once a year. To remove collections of dust, dirt and bird droppings. In small amounts these won’t have much effect on the output but over time a build up can reduce the effectiveness of the solar panel.

Can I mount the panels in any direction?

Facing due north is the ideal orientation, but panels facing more east or west can still provide a high percentage of available power (perhaps 10–15% reduction).  The optimum tilt angle of the solar electricity panels is 20–25 degrees which makes standard roof pitches ideal, but if you have a low angle or flat roof, adjustable tilt frames can be used to bring the panels up to the ideal angle.

What happens in a power outage?

Your solar power system will instantly shut off if the grid fails. This is Australian law and is designed to protect electrical line workers.  When the grid power is shut off, the workers expect the lines to be dead so they can safely repair faults.  If your system keeps producing electricity, it can risk the lives of the line workers.  This also protects any electricians doing work within your business.

What’s next?

Positive Charge can arrange for you to receive obligation free quotes from several solar suppliers and can conduct an assessment of the quotes to help you decide the best option for your business.The Positive Charge experts can offer you free advice over the phone. If you would like to receive an energy assessment with tailored advice call one of the Positive Charge experts on 1300 23 68 55 to book one in.

*Help with the upfront cost of installing solar

Under state government schemes in both New South Wales and Victoria certain businesses qualify for varying levels of rebates on installing solar.

The following categories of businesses that qualify are:

  • Education
  • Industrial
  • Healthcare
  • Hospitality
  • Offices
  • Retail
  • Showrooms
  • Supermarkets

You may also be eligible for funding through Environmental Upgrade Agreements (EUAs). EUAs are a council based funding mechanism in Victorian and NSW. EUAs are set up to help building owners, tenants and investors finance environmental upgrades such as LED lighting, insulation and solar energy.

The basics

  • Building owner agrees to upgrades
  • Building owner, council and finance provider enter into an EUA
  • Finance provider advances funds for the upgrade
  • Council collects repayments through a rates based system and then passes the repayments through to the finance provider
  • The building owner can ask the tenants to contribute or cover the cost of the upgrades through the savings made on their energy bills and running costs

 EUAs can offer excellent ways for businesses to:

  • Reduce running costs
  • Install renewable energy systems, such as solar
  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Improve working conditions

At present, council areas offering EUAs include:

Victoria

  • City of Greater Bendigo
  • Hobsons Bay City Council
  • Greater Geelong
  • Greater Shepperton
  • City of Maribyrnong
  • City of Melbourne
  • Moreland City Council
  • Mornington Peninsula
  • South Gippsland Shire
  • Wyndham City Council

And currently setting up:

  • Brimbank City Council
  • Dandenong City Council
  • Mildura Rural City Council

New South Wales

  • Blacktown City
  • Lake Macquarie City
  • City of Newcastle
  • North Sydney
  • Parramatta City
  • City of Sydney