If you follow solar energy news, you have probably heard the claims that you can turn your meter backwards when you install solar panels on your property. Even if you are a “greenie,” you may find the claim dubious.
So we are showcasing a real-life example of how solar energy is literally creating a “negative” electricity bill for one person. He did it without extraordinary investment, on a modest residential property. There is a significant lesson to be learned here: you can do it too.
Net metering has become somewhat of a “buzz word” these days. This is particularly since renewable energy is gaining traction as not only good for the environment, but also helpful for your bottom line. With solar tax incentives abundant and generous, one might wonder why you wouldn’t invest in solar energy?
In this post, we’ll explore Jim Price’s solar panel results. His electric meter started going backward in mid-2008 after the installation. Taking a look at the digital display, Mr. Price watches it turn to the left, instead of the right. When it flashes zeros, Price knows that he is using less energy than generated by the solar panel system in his backyard. The excess power is pumped back into the grid as 100% clean, renewable energy – now available for his neighbors and other properties in his hometown.
Instead of $120/month electricity bills, Price is now enjoying a hiatus from these utility bills. Can you imagine a happier moment than opening the envelope each month?
Jim Riggens, an Air Force retiree and environmentalist, helped bring the National Solar Tour to six sites in Santa Maria, as part of the nonprofit American Solar Energy Society (ASES) national education and publicity campaign. Riggens asks the question about which so many of us around the world wonder:
“What struck me was why, in a place where you have so much sunshine, how few roofs have solar panels?”
As explored in a related post, many people think that solar panels are too expensive. But that is just one of the common myths about solar power. Really, folks. It is not experimental. Its not insanely expensive. And it can help protect you against rising power costs and provide a measure of safety.
Getting back to Mr. Price. Consider this: the retail price for a 4,400 watt solar panel system would have been $34,500. However, with city and state rebates, plus a $2,000 federal tax credit, the cost was slashed to $19,250. This does not take into consideration the increased value his home will gain as a result. For every $1 saved in annual electricity bills, there is a $20 gain in equity. Consider a $1000 annual savings, you can recoup the cost of a $20,000 investment immediately.
What is holding you back from turning your meter backwards? Isn’t this the year to go solar?