Making best use of your rooftop solar PV


It’s 11am which is into the peak generation time for our solar PV and now we (in Victoria) are off the transitional feed in tariff, it makes most sense and cents to use electricity while we are producing it. The photo shows our Watts Clever In Home Display. The top reading is what we are importing from the grid- nothing. The next one is the total we have used today, since midnight- 1.21 Kwh. The bars below that represent the total used each day for the last few days and you can scroll back using the buttons at the bottom. At the moment we have the washing machine going and some berries boiling away on the induction cooktop to make jam so the solar system is producing enough to cover that use and more. Our biggest energy guzzling appliance is our electric car. Prior to December 31st we used to just charge it whenever it suited us but now we try to do it during the day as much as possible.

One disadvantage of the Watts Clever display is that it does not show the solar production. I do like that it is so visible all the time though. Some products rely on opening up the display on your phone or computer which I don’t think is as useful. Energy researchers have found that people who use these IHDs typically reduce their electricity consumption by about 10%, just by being more diligent in turning things off. For most consumers that means a payback time of a year or so.

Another thing to consider is the feed in tariff that your retailer is prepared to pay you and how that relates to the total package of other rates and supply charges. You can compare retail offers at Victorian Energy Compare.

As batteries reduce in price and arrangements to sell your stored energy at times of high wholesale prices emerge, exciting changes in how our electricity market operates are going to happen. Reposit, Greensync, Sonnen and others are worth keeping an eye on.


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