I went into January €261 in credit score with my electrical energy provider, Electrical Eire (EI). This isn’t smug bragging, I’m advocating. To run an EV automotive and the whole home in 2022, this was a uncommon win, and hardly terrifying, looking forward to 2023/2024.

We owe this bounce to the thought of use of our solar-photovoltaic panels, utilising the potential of a 6.5kWh storage battery, and being disciplined across the confirmed benefits of time-of-use vitality tariffs (T-o-U). I take pleasure in a gentle, seasonal efficiency from a comparatively small 4.2kWp PV-solar system c.2019, and it’s one thing that each household in Eire ought to be assisted in including to their home vitality spherical. 

All I see are ineffective, bald roofs bathed in sunshine all around the nation as we hunker down on this vitality disaster. I get requested about solar-PV each week by Irish Examiner readers, so listed below are just a few solutions for newbies, contemplating renewable know-how in 2023. 

For fuller info go surfing to the Sustainable Power Authority of Eire’s web site and discover their glorious Dwelling Power pages. Then be part of the Irish Photo voltaic PV & Battery System House owners Group on Fb, which boasts over 37,000 members. 

You don’t should be an proprietor to affix, in truth, it’s a wonderful place to ask all these perplexing questions of each suppliers and PV-solar customers, a few of whom have self-installed their techniques forgoing SEAI grant help (commissioning with a RECI-certified electrician, after all).


Some 46,500 folks have taken the step to home photo voltaic to date in Eire. “Rising vitality costs and local weather issues have turbocharged buyer curiosity in rooftop photo voltaic panels,” says Conall Bolger, CEO of the Irish Photo voltaic Power Affiliation (ISEA). 

Not solely do prospects get monetary savings and contribute to the combat in opposition to local weather change utilizing photo voltaic, however PV can activate folks to take that additional motion.

Being current at house by day, you may be reactive to solar-PV vitality assortment because it occurs. This has made PV extraordinarily in style with retirees. 

There’s a hobbyist pleasure to squeezing one of the best from each lingering kWh off the roof. 

Being current on the home, extra energy can go right into a battery, water heater, PHEV or BEV. In winter you’ll be able to benefit from the achieve contributing modestly to working a warmth pump, or different electrical heating equivalent to infra-red panels. 

That mentioned, with battery assortment and the Micro-generation Help Scheme (MSS), even if you’re not there, your solar-PV system may be working to cut back your invoice.


As soon as dwelling within the mild, you’ll begin out with an anxious eyeball skilled on the software program read-outs day lengthy. Most solar-PV homeowners ultimately cease obsessing with scudding clouds and vitality spikes, and simply let the system passively do its factor. 

In my view, partaking as totally as doable with the advantages of solar-PV radically alters the underside line. Relying on the climate, I’d run a number of a great deal of laundry in a single sunny day (with machines working sequentially the place doable). I’ll nonetheless see extra energy going again to the nationwide grid to be repaid by way of the MSS. 

Throughout the identical time, a hint of kWs continues to warmth my water via the water diverter, and my battery is taking in sufficient kWhs to get me via the night (4kWh is loads). My ultimate is to be utilizing my PV for my family energy for many, if not all, of the day for 9 months of the 12 months, besides the minute quantity of grid energy essential to cycle the battery. 

In winter, on even a darkish day, my lighting, TV and laptop computer are all off-grid, even when the battery lies comparatively idle.


The choice on whether or not a battery warrants the extra up-front price may be very depending on the shopper’s price range, the dimensions of the photo voltaic system, the suitability of their house, and their electrical energy demand, in keeping with Conall Bolger. 

” installer can work via your choices. Nevertheless, it isn’t obligatory. Many purchasers get worth from photo voltaic panels alone, via invoice financial savings and funds below the MSS. We at all times suggest that prospects get various quotes from suitably certified installers, and you could find suppliers on the members’ web page of our web site (irishsolareenergy.org).”

To even method 24 hours off-grid from the second week of February in my case (a misnomer, as in Eire, even with
the most important array, you’re usually grid-tied) — you could have a battery. The price of batteries has soared, and their inclusion can double a quote for a solar-PV system. Nonetheless, their versatility is famous. 

I can’t think about life with out with the ability to seamlessly segue out and in of a saved provide. Working off the battery saves on expensive peak-hour tariffs of 50c/kWh or extra and permits you to attain cheaper T-o-U costs of 20c or much less after 11pm. When the battery is exhausted (at 10% cost it should cease drawing down), there’s additionally the power to obtain energy at night time from the grid with low-cost night-time T-o-U tariffs. 

That is all simply arrange on the fascia touch-screen or utilizing the software program app with any solar-PV inverter. That mentioned, with the MSS, extra energy out of your array can nonetheless increase a minimum of 21c per kWh (relying in your provider) credited again to your invoice.


There’s a restrict to the ability your system can “drop” from a battery or inverter at anybody time, and there are just a few high-input home equipment that may at all times show a problem, blowing via your real-time achieve and your battery’s saved energy. 

Electrical energy showers can demand 9kWh. A 15-minute bathe may take a big chew out of any saved energy within the battery and can by no means run fully off a medium-sized array of say 5kWp. 

Boiling the kettle — you’ll be able to count on to see that real-time use peak and attain out to the grid for a 2kWh to 3kWh for a couple of minutes a minimum of. This actuality has made me a extra conservative and cautious shopper — elevating my consciousness and altering my vitality behaviours virtually completely. 

If the electrical bathe ran for longer than 5 minutes, there can be a Kya-shaped gap within the rest room door.


There’s no have to have a wise meter for photo voltaic PV or the MSS scheme. Sensible meter offers aren’t proving to supply one of the best time-of-use tariffs at current, and you’ll profit from T-o-U tariffs with a Day/Evening meter. 

The MSS pays customers for extra energy returned to the grid in two methods — each showing as a kWh credit score in your invoice from the provider. There’s an correct fee for sensible meter prospects and a deemed-usage fee for these with 24-hour and Day/Evening meters. 

The deemed utilization is predicated on an equation of presumed return based mostly on the scale and facet of your array as set out by the Fee for Power Regulation (CRU). Pour your entire extra energy right into a home battery or stick it within the EV? The identical deemed utilization remains to be calculated and paid out as credit score.


With rising demand how lengthy will a buyer have to attend for a system to be put in?

“In response to ESB Networks (ESBN), within the first 11 months of 2022, 16,946 techniques have been put in. We’re anticipating an additional enhance in 2023 contemplating the tariff for promoting energy again to the grid (MSS) and the elimination of planning restrictions for home arrays, solely took impact in This autumn of 2022,” says Conall Bolger. 

There are elevated ready instances for solar-PV installations, so in case you are contemplating getting on board, now’s the time to arrange an on-site survey and discover out what system would swimsuit you, the potential price and a timeline for its set up. 

Clearly, getting your array in earlier than the excessive days of summer season will provide you with a formidable consequence from the primary comparatively vivid day, probably banking some kWhs within the MSS which might take a pleasant nibble out of the compulsory standing expenses.


For solar-PV grant help from the SEAI, capped at €2,400, €900 per kWp as much as 2kWp (of array on the roof), there may be €300 for each further kWp as much as 4kWp. It may be rolled right into a deep retrofit one-stop store grant-aided deep retrofit.

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