Solar Power for your business - the time is now
By Diana Gosper
Commercial solar and what it means for your business:
Have you thought about upgrading your business to solar? Businesses typically use the majority of their energy during the day- this makes them the perfect candidate for installing solar. Installing solar on the roof of a business premises makes great sense as the power generated from the sun can be used directly below to meet the business energy requirements. A well designed commercial solar system may have a ROI (return on investment) of as low as 2 years.
Rainbow Power Company 2020 Solar upgrade
The three systems comprised of 76 x Kyocera 135 watt panels and 24 x Trina 260W panels connected to three SMA solar inverters: a 5kW Sunny Mini Central, 5kW Sunny Boy and 5kW Sunny Tri-Power. The data was logged by a SMA Webbox and Home Manager.
We have now upgraded the system with an additional 96 x REC twin peak 325W panels connected to a 25kW Sunny TriPower solar inverter. In addition to this we updated our existing inverters to the latest models from Fronius and SMA to modernise our showroom and aid with staff training and customer visibility.
To help offset our night time energy usage we have also installed a Tesla Powerwall2 AC Battery. This acts as a backup in grid outages but also provides battery power for self-consumption running our business each night. Also minimising imported power from the grid on cloudy days if our solar momentarily is less than our usage.
Our new solar system is slightly oversized for our requirements but is designed to incorporate the introduction of an electric vehicle to our fleet. This will start to not only offset our electricity consumption but also provide for our transport needs. The extra power generated is fed back into the grid at up to 5kW per phase (15kW total), which helps repay our investment via the feed in tariff.
Feel free to come down to our showroom and take a look or you can view our system data online.
Reduced bills, blackout protection and doing your bit to fight climate change:
It is a good feeling knowing that your business is running on solar, but for a business the benefits go far beyond that.
Productivity has increased as our workers are now in air-conditioned comfort; heating and cooling are major areas of commercial energy consumption and cost. This is now affordable as the sun is covering most of the expense.
As with all modern businesses we are now dependant on electricity for phones, computers and lighting, without power we might as well close the doors as we can't trade. Blackouts and power interruptions no longer affect our business. The new Tesla Powerwall2 ensures that our critical power requirements continue to operate with or without the grid.
A 30kW solar system can cost as little as $20,000 after Government incentives. A system this size will produce on average over 120 kWh per day. If all this energy is consumed on site and we assume the business pays $0.30 per kWh for electricity, this equates to a saving of approximately $13,140 per year.
A business like ours, with 35 employees, can see a return on investment in as little as 2 years, with bills being reduced by an estimated 80% (tune in next month for an updated report after we evaluate our next billing cycle).
Commercial solar with RPC
RPC has installed many solar systems for our commercial customers including
- Lismore's Richmond Hotel installed a 23.6kW Grid feed system (118 x Trina 200W panels) and are enjoying power free from the sun.
- The Roundabout Inn (Grafton) have recently installed a 38.8kW grid feed solar system with RPC and our reach is expanding.
- Creative industries wanting to make a difference are also coming to RPC to assist them to make the switch. Local potter Avital Sheffer recently installed a 21.12kW grid connect solar system through RPC to help run the electric Kiln - reaping the benefits and cost reductions.
- Nightcap Ridge Eco Retreat recently installed a 6kW off grid power system to power its wedding event centre and guest houses.
- In May 2017, Rainbow Power Company completed its largest installation so far, at the Goonellabah Sports and Aquatic Centre (GSAC) in Lismore. GSAC was fitted with (360 solar panels, with a 93.6kW capacity) – a massive array by any standards.
Rainbow Power has previously installed grid connect systems on other Council buildings, including Oakes oval, Goonellabah Community Centre, Lismore library and the Wyrallah Road Council facility. The latest installation is expected to have paid for itself in five to seven years, and puts Lismore City Council well on the way to meeting their admirable target for renewables.
Depreciation tax incentives
Businesses purchasing long term assets (that last more than a year) can currently choose to claim depreciation of an amount up to a threshold of $30,000 all in the one year, giving them an immediate tax incentive to invest in plant and equipment for their business. Solar systems qualify for this government incentive. This means installing a solar system immediately reduces your tax bill while providing the ongoing benefit of reducing your future energy bills.
*Speak to your tax agent to see if you are eligible.
Mid-year that is all set to change; come June 30 2020, the federal government will reduce that threshold to $1000.
Solar for Not-For-Profits by RPC
Rainbow Power Company has assisted countless NFP and NGO organisations to switch to solar. Recently and most notably in our local community is the Nimbin Soccer Club;
Nimbin soccer fields 10kW solar system and Tesla Powerwall2 installation through RPC;
'For us as a club our solar installation has meant that in the off season we don't pay a bill, we make money! And that money for a non-profit organisation like ours, goes a long way towards new shirts, facilities, clubhouse and field improvements.' (Fabien Prevost, Nimbin Headers Football Club president).
Go solar today with the renewable energy experts; Contact us - 'The authority on solar power since 1987'.