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How Does Solar Power Work At Night?

Solar power at night

In Australia, there are two systems to power your home at night if you have solar panels installed.

The first system is to buy all your ‘after dark’ electricity from the mains grid. That means when the sun sets, your solar panels effectively ‘shut down’... and you pay the power company to keep the lights on just like everyone else.

While this system is the most common in Australia, many people don’t like it.

It forces you to pay high rates for electricity that is rightfully yours. Plus, it keeps you tied to the energy companies, it’s not good for the environment... and if there’s a blackout, you lose power.

The second system is more modern and rapidly growing in popularity.

This system uses a combination of solar storage batteries and mains grid electricity… and once installed, it can cut your power bills by as much as 80% according to recent case studies.

Here's the story...

How to cut your night time electricity bill with solar battery systems

Solar batteries have been around for a while, but up until recently, the costs were very high, the equipment was bulky and they were difficult to use. Aside from people who needed to live off the grid, they were considered a poor investment.

Thankfully that has changed in recent years.

Technology improvements like safe lithium-ion batteries have made systems cheaper so they can now potentially pay for themselves. This gives you more independence from the big energy corporations, shrinks your bills and leaves extra cash in your pocket to spend on yourself and your family.

Click here to discover how much you can save with batteries now

How does it work?

Solar battery systems are a great way to reduce your reliance on the big energy corporations. Here's how they work...

  • Solar panels convert sunlight to DC (Direct Current) electricity.
  • During the day, your home uses some of this electricity
  • Any surplus electricity is stored in the solar battery.
  • This surplus energy is then available to uses after dark so you don’t have to buy electricity back from the grid.
  • If your battery runs out of electricity, you automatically switch back to the mains grid.

This means you have a steady supply of electricity, but you can still save money on energy bills at nights as well as on cloudy or rainy days.

It's easy to see why these systems are becoming increasingly popular in homes around Australia.

The system that is leading the way in
this storage revolution is the Tesla Powerwall 2...

The Tesla Powerwall 2 is the undoubted market leader when it comes to solar battery storage.

First, the Tesla Powerwall 2 has twice the storage capacity of the original Powerwall - 17.6kW, which is more than enough for an average Australian family.

However, if you are a real energy hog, multiple batteries can be installed together to provide the average household with more than enough power for several days.

The Powerwall is also very safe. There are no live wires or unsightly vents - and the lithium ion battery requires minimum maintenance. You can even monitor your electricity usage from your iPhone or Android device!

Plus, you can have peace of mind during a blackout event because the system includes hardware that automatically supplies power and isolates you from the grid in the event of an outage.

When your street goes dark because of a storm, you will still have lights, TV, the fridge and other appliances.

Can solar battery systems save your money?

Of course, everyone’s situation is different. Your home will require an assessment and any savings will depend on your actual individual circumstances.

However, case studies suggest that the system can reduce your mains grid electricity consumption by as much as 80% based on standard system installation in a capital city...

The upfront costs varies... but it is possible to get the system installed for as little as $35 a week on an interest free loan.

If you would like to find out how much you could reduce your reliance on electricity companies through implementing a solar storage solution like the Tesla Powerwall 2, contact us today.

The sooner you get the system, the sooner you’ll start saving on electricity bills and improving energy efficiency.

Many Australian households are itching to buy solar batteries to escape the stranglehold of the traditional power companies who still control the flow of electricity at night.

Now it’s your turn!

Click here to discover how much you can save with batteries now

12 comments so far

  • Robert and Olivia Johns 4 months ago

    We will be building our new house in Bainsdale,Victoria we are going to sell our current residence by next year.. we would like to know if we are qualified,since we already install a ten solar panel 5 years ago...our electricity provider is Energy Australia.

  • Deborah Campbell 5 months ago

    Looking for 3 quotes for solar panels

  • Alan S 3 years ago

    Lynne: More conspiracy theories here than about the moon landing. What type of business did you work in since 1978? A patented system that uses super efficient solar cells to work off street lights - and the idea hasn't progressed? Perhaps that's because it doesn't work. Anyone who knows about the relationship between light intensity and distance or the latest efficiencies of solar cells (50% in the lab) could say why it can't. Yes there are printed organic dye cells but they're less efficient than monocrystalline. Who was the company? Where can I read a technical account of it? Which research lab or university peer reviewed and verified it? And who is the Alternative Energy Group that is keeping this under wraps and why? Store the power in a battery or connect to the grid if you want power at night.

  • Lynne McKay 3 years ago

    I have worked in the end-user part of Solar Powered installations since about 1978 and each time I see the discussion about how to use Solar Power at night or in remote areas, some technical facts come to mind... 1) About ten years ago a company in America patented a solar technology which was able to convert the light from street lighting (at night) to provide enough solar power to light a single room in a house illuminated by the street light.. This system, I understand, uses super-efficient solar power collectors which are "printed" onto sheets of plastic which can simply be pasted to existing windows. To my knowledge, this technology has not been progressed further. 2) The alternative Energy group in all their discussions never discuss one of the basics in Solar Power Design and that is the initial (carbon) cost of the solar powered (or wind powered) equipment can never be recovered during the economic life of the installation. Such pro-alternative energy groups only look at the so-called "saved" generation cost where solar power can be utilised...and even then they ignore the on-going maintenance costs incurred. 3) In Indonesia, in-line AC generators are installed in the bamboo pipelines transferring water from point to point in paddi fields. The number of generators installed in a pipeline determines the available level of useable Wattage available to the village. Similarly, in-line generators could be installed in all the pipeline grids of town and city water distribution systems and these would run 24/7 as long as the water flows. 4. As a rule of thumb, over 90% of all the rainfall in Australia falls above the 19th Parallel (Rockhampton) and of this rainfall, 90% runs out to sea. WE don't need to build huge dams with huge costs. Each river and stream could have "Take-off" pipes installed along their lengths. These pipes connect to storage ponds from which larger pipes carry the water on to the next storage pond and hence to even larger pipes and so on. The end result could be large pipelines carrying this current 90% run-off down through the centre of Australia feeding townships and agriculture all the way to Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne. These very large pipes would also have in-line generators installed which generate power when the water is flowing down-hill to enable pumping of the same water further on, when the pipelines need to go up-hill. Such a project would water-protect Australia for the future and cost only half that expended on the Snowy Mountains Scheme. Why won't our Politicians even look at such proposals???

  • john healy 3 years ago

    The electricity retailer charges me 26¢ kw, but pay me only 6¢ kw feed in tariff,this is daylight robbery, I can't wait for some sort of storage system to become available!

  • Will 3 years ago

    Hi Will, That's a really interesting insight - thanks for sharing. And we won't tell anyone about your setup. ;)

  • jeremy 3 years ago

    one of the main reason that the govt does not further subsidise, at least in Qld, is they own the assets, so the less power you use the less money they get, recently the Govt lowered the cost of electricity (kw/h cost) and increased the standing charges (poles and wires) so that their revenue is maintained, this is ok if you use a lot of electricity as the cost comes down, put if you are a pensioner and try to cut costs by turning everything off then your costs will be higher as a percentage. @Mark the grid is a sort of battery, let me explain, firstly the grid from a generation point of view is made up of a number of generators large and small, not to forget hydro - hyrdo is in fact a battery, it is quick to start (large turbines are slow) so great for responding to peak demand then later when say there is excess power in the grid including roof top solar, pumps are used to move the water back up i.e. a battery. In a similar way the smaller generation units like gas turbine that are used for peak demand are not needed if the gap or peak (or part of it) is provided by roof top solar, there are a number of other technologies available around the world for storing energy for later generation of electricity, all of which are really batteries, the Spanish use super heated salt water (not really water but close enough for here) in this way they heat the solution during the day from mirrors focused on a tower and use it at night, the Japanese make a BIG battery that can store upto 6 Mega/W/h or enough to power several hundred homes

  • Mark 3 years ago

    Kate, your article is very misleading. Hooking your solar panels up to the grid does not allow you to 'store' surplus energy for use later. The surplus energy goes into the grid and is consumed instantaneously by other users (most likely your next door neighbour). If you want 'your' surplus energy back at night, you will have to buy what you need from your electricity retailer. Only a battery bank (with associated electronic controls) will enable you to 'store' your excess power for your own personal use.

  • Hugo Kallus 3 years ago

    I have a roof mounted 3kw Solar power array. During a recent daytime blackout when the sky was blue and temps in mid 20,s I was expecting to be able to use my solar power generated, Power was out for approx 2hrs, But alas no not a single volt of my own power could be used. this was because the Electricity supplier had turned off my inverter to stop energy going back down the line. This is fair enough, but why cannot this energy be available for use by the generating household? Thank you. Hugo

  • lilian haslehurst 3 years ago

    Is it true with solar off the grid you have to use it during they day to get any benefit. I use my Washing machines and dishwasher in the day my husband says it does not matter Thanks

  • will 3 years ago

    the only reaosn a solar system needs to be on the grid is not for night time use but because big energy will not allow storgae of power. they want to keep charging you for using and make money of what you make. i have a converted solar cell illegally powering a 12v car battery charging station and it makes a great UPS for when lights go out.

  • Donald Lundberg 3 years ago

    At last, I now understand how solar power works. I have for quite sometime been asking the question to which no one I asked appeared to have a simple answer, herein is the simple article. Kate, thank you. At 76 I still have a dream home I want to build (someday maybe) and solar power is a big inclusion in that dream...May you find your somewhere in the wilderness and become self sufficient in a vegetarian lifestyle. In the meantime I thank you for your article

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