Many people install solar and believe they can use an unlimited amount of power and never get charged. This misconception can lead to unwanted overage charges from your utility company. It is important to realize that solar arrays are usually sized to mitigate your past usage. If you plan on using more energy after installing solar, let your consultant know before designing your system. After your SunPower system is installed, you can monitor how much energy your system is generating with an app on your smartphone or computer. Another option is having the utility company install a consumption monitor (if your main service panel can accommodate it), allowing you to compare energy production and energy use.
In the past, most people have struggled to read their electrical meter. The old-fashioned analog meter with its cryptic five dial system has been replaced with a new digital system. But, at first glance, this system appears just as cryptic. Green Convergence wants to demystify your meter.
How to use your meter and consumption monitor together...
System production by itself is an incomplete metric to evaluate projected energy costs, yet still useful to ensure optimum system performance. To discover if your solar system will mitigate your entire energy usage, subtract the monthly kWh total of your consumption meter from the monthly kWh total on your SunPower Monitor app. As long as you still have a positive number, you are in the black.
Your digital meter switches between three screens.
This displays your energy usage in kilowatt hours. Notice the “001” in the top-left corner of the screen. This is basically your energy system’s equivalent to your car’s odometer.
This screen is for Edison’s use. Notice the “Pld” in the top-left corner of the screen. This is the Program ID mode.
This screen is for Edison’s use. Notice the “888” in the top-left corner of the screen. This is the Self-Test mode.
It’s that simple.