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Your Electricity Use

In order to suggest appropriate sizes for a solar system and do an analysis, it is helpful to know your current or projected electrical consumption in terms of kilowatt-hours per month.

The first place to start is to tell us how much electricity you use now. From that we can tell you the economics of different options (replacing all your usage with solar, replacing some...). Because of the structure of the rates, the economics are very dependent on your consumption. The same size solar system can save different amounts for different people.

For the usage it would be good if you have a year's history. We can roughly estimate from just one month's bill but a year is much better. The number we need is the total kilowatt-hours that you use each month.

    You can get the usage three ways:
  1. Directions for getting interval data from PGE:
      If one doesn't have online access to one's account yet, it's easy and fast to get. (One needs a statement copy for the account#)
    • Go to PGE's website, click on "My Account" and then on "Log in" in the lower right. In the box that pops up you can register, if you haven't already.
    • After logging in, click on "Usage Analysis" under "My Usage".
    • On the page that comes up, click on the "Green Button" in the lower right corner, and choose "Export usage for a range of days:" (3rd choice from top), and change initial date so that it covers as least a year (longer is even better).
  2. You can call PG&E (800-743-5000). Ask them for a 12 month history of your kilowatt-hours per month, broken down by month. You can ask them to email you the answers or read them to you on the phone. Forward those to us.
  3. If you have 12 months of bills, you can find the usage listed in a box in the Electric Account Details portion of your bill (usually page 3 towards the bottom of the page).

It is also necessary to know the tariff under which you are served. It is most likely E1 TB, but could be different. It is on the first page, just above your name on the left in the middle of the page. Is your house all-electric, or do you have gas service as well?

Please let us know the address of your house as well.

If you would like, we can also give you lots of links to interesting readings about solar, and solar energy policy in general.

Thanks for your interest,

The team at Applied Solar Energy

Background

Net metering means that when your solar system is producing more than you use, your energy flows out to the grid, turning your meter backwards, earning credits at retail rates. At times when you are using more than you are producing (e.g. at night) the energy flows from PG&E turning the meter forwards. After each year, PG&E bills you for your "Net usage". If you have not produced as much as you used, you will owe PG&E. If you produced more than you used, PG&E will now pay you as of 2011! Or your acount may just be zeroed out.

Solar Rebates are slowly decreasing, with scheduled drops as different levels of solar installs are achieved.

There is a Solar Federal tax credit of 30%, for solar systems. Commercial systems (including on rental properties) also qualify for accelerated depreciation.

Solar Analysis Form to fill out

Street Address:
City:
Zip:

PGE Acct#:
Electrial Tariff (something like E1TB or E1XH):

Electrical Usage in kilowatt-hours (kwh) Since the current year isn't complete yet, you can start your history sometime in the prior year. Just make sure we have at least 12 months history.

Prior year
Jan:
Feb:
Mar:
Apr:
May:
Jun:
Jul:
Aug:
Sep:
Oct:
Nov:
Dec:

Current year
Jan:
Feb:
Mar:
Apr:
May:
Jun:
Jul:
Aug:
Sep:
Oct:
Nov:
Dec:

If you are interested in hot water as well, fill out therms per month.

Prior year
Jan:
Feb:
Mar:
Apr:
May:
Jun:
Jul:
Aug:
Sep:
Oct:
Nov:
Dec:

Current year
Jan:
Feb:
Mar:
Apr:
May:
Jun:
Jul:
Aug:
Sep:
Oct:
Nov:
Dec: