#Stay­ing­home means we’re open­ing the fridge door every 20 min­utes, flick­ing on the ket­tle, cook­ing lunch­es, boil­ing noo­dles, bak­ing cakes, stream­ing shows, leaf blow­ing, hedge trim­ming and we’re all on devices.

No longer is our work­place pay­ing for the air-con or the cof­fee machine. On the bright side, the iron and hair dry­er are tak­ing a break. 

Are we using more electricity? 

A recent study of smart meter data in the UK showed that where house­holds had increased their week­day ener­gy con­sump­tion, the increase was up to 30%. Ouch!

Lucky for us it’s not win­ter in Aus­tralia (yet) so we’ve been enjoy­ing abun­dant sun­shine pro­vid­ing light and warmth – and plen­ti­ful solar pow­er in solar-equipped homes. 

Accord­ing to data from Solar Ana­lyt­ics, the good news is that ener­gy con­sump­tion in house­holds now hous­ing more humans mid­week due to Coro­na con­fine­ment is up only slight­ly, if at all. 

And the great news is that the onsite con­sump­tion of free solar pow­er in these house­holds is up significantly. 

Some solar hous­es are con­sum­ing 37% more of their free solar energy!

Solar Ana­lyt­ics has found that, since stay­ing home, 20% of house­holds in its 35,000 strong fleet of solar sites have increased their self-con­sump­tion of free solar pow­er by 20%.

In dol­lar terms, this means an approx­i­mate extra sav­ing of about $62 a quar­ter on top of the sav­ings from solar already being made. And we’re still in balmy April.

Even bet­ter, 10% of house­holds have increased their free solar self-con­sump­tion by at least 37% com­pared to the begin­ning of March. 

That trans­lates to an extra $1.70 in sav­ings per day (based on aver­age tar­iffs), or a fur­ther $153 in sav­ings over three months. 

When the cold­er, dark­er months arrive in a few weeks (depend­ing upon where you live) we’ll be turn­ing on the lights and the heat­ing for more hours every day. 

We sus­pect that while solar ener­gy pro­duc­tion will have its usu­al sea­son­al reduc­tion, the poten­tial val­ue of solar ener­gy to house­holds could be just as big in win­ter, off­set­ting much larg­er house­hold ener­gy con­sump­tion. 

What’s hap­pen­ing at your house?

House­holds with Solar Ana­lyt­ics ener­gy mon­i­tor­ing have their solar self-con­sump­tion data served to them on a platter. 

Head to the Con­sump­tion page on your dash­board and scroll down to BREAK­DOWN (in select­ed range)

Here you’ll see a graph­ic with three cir­cles showing:

Solar con­sumed on site (the yel­low circle)

Ener­gy import­ed from the grid (the pur­ple circle)

Solar export­ed to the grid (the orange circle)

Change the date ranges and con­tin­ue to watch and com­pare your solar self-con­sump­tion over the next weeks and months. Hope­ful­ly that yel­low cir­cle will grow!

Please share your expe­ri­ences with us. We’d love you to share your find­ings on our Insta­gram or Face­book pages.

Case stud­ies

We asked a num­ber of ener­gy-con­scious house­holds what they were expe­ri­enc­ing at home.

Two adults with a 1kW solar system 

Solar Ana­lyt­ics’ cofounder Renate Egan and her fam­i­ly have a 12-year-old 1kW system. 

Renate says, Two of us have been work­ing from home for three and a half weeks now. If I com­pare March this year with March last year our self-con­sump­tion has gone up by 10% and we were only work­ing from home for half of March. 

The num­bers aren’t huge as we are very ener­gy aware – but I expect this will be more dra­mat­ic in April because we expect to be home for the entire month.

If I look just at the last three weeks, we are self con­sum­ing 76% – up from 63% this time last year.”

An all-elec­tric home with four peo­ple and a dog

Sarah, a mem­ber of the My Effi­cient Elec­tric Home Face­book Group, report­ed that her ener­gy con­sump­tion had gone up by 30% since she and her part­ner and her two teens start­ed stay­ing home. 

Sarah’s all elec­tric home doesn’t have solar and she says the increase is due to cook­ing indi­vid­ual mid­day meals, com­put­er and TV, more hot water use and kids turn­ing on the heat­ing unnec­es­sar­i­ly! Sarah also report­ed that the dog was very hap­py at the moment.

A five-per­son straw­bale home with an EV and 11kW PV system

Ali­son, also a mem­ber of My Effi­cient Elec­tric Home, report­ed that her household’s dai­ly con­sump­tion had dropped because the EV was no longer being used to dri­ve to school or the shops every day.

She said, We are no longer putting around 10kWh a day into our EV. Now doing maybe 6kWh two or three times a week instead.”

But Ali­son reports her grid con­sump­tion hasn’t increased from around 9kW on a sun­ny day because they have more solar avail­able dur­ing the day­time with­out the draw from the EV.

Your solar is Essen­tial’

With many more weeks and pos­si­bly months ahead of stay­ing home’, and the val­ue that comes with self-con­sum­ing solar, we want to ensure that solar own­ers use their solar pro­duc­tion as effi­cient­ly as pos­si­ble, and non-solar own­ers con­sid­er invest­ing in solar for their households.

In order to achieve this, Solar Ana­lyt­ics wants to make sure that the pro­vi­sion of rooftop solar and solar ser­vices is con­firmed as an essen­tial service.

Please sign the Solar Cit­i­zens and Solar Ana­lyt­ics peti­tion to ensure #SolarIsEssen­tial

Full arti­cle: https://​www​.solar​an​a​lyt​ics​.com/​a​u​/​b​l​o​g​/​g​o​o​d​-​n​e​w​s​-​s​o​l​a​r​-​o​w​n​e​r​s​-​a​r​e​-​m​a​k​i​n​g​-​g​r​e​a​t​-​s​a​v​i​n​g​s​-​f​r​o​m​-​t​h​e​i​r​-​s​o​l​a​r​-​w​h​i​l​e​-​s​t​a​y​i​n​ghome