You all must have come across the term ‘net metering’ and would be willing to understand how you can apply for a net meter. But before that let us discuss the grid-connected solar system and its importance. Grid-connected PV systems are the solar panels that supply more of their power during the daytime. Sometimes it produces more electricity than the actual requirement. In such a situation, the surplus electricity can either be stored in batteries or provided directly back into the electrical grid network.
Importance of Grid Connected Solar system
We can say that in a grid-connected solar system, the flow of electricity is back-and-forth, to-and-from the main grid to the panel, and vice versa as per the sunlight conditions and the electricity demand.
The PV solar panels are connected to the local main lines to facilitate the transfer of electrical energy back into the grid. That is why it is commonly known as ‘grid-tied, or ‘on-grid solar system.
Grid-connected Solar systems come up with many advantages like:
- These PV solar systems are simple and efficient.
- The maintenance and operating cost is comparatively low.
- You will get the benefit of reduced electricity bills.
- It is the best investment option which will yield you a good amount of profit.
- As you can transfer the produced solar energy directly back into the grid, buying expensive backup batteries can be omitted.
What is a Net Meter?
Net metering is a system under which all the users of solar power, the residential or the commercial owners, who are generating electricity via the Solar power system, can send the excess electricity back to the grid that they are not utilizing. During a sunny day, the owners produce more electricity than their actual requirement, thus, with the help of a net meter, they can export that power back to the grid and can reduce their future electricity bills.
How does Net Meter work?
In a country like India where there is an ample amount of sunlight throughout the year, solar energy is generated on a regular basis. But not all the produced solar energy is consumed throughout the day.
During summers, the consumption of electricity is increased up to 100% whereas it reduces to 50% in winter and rainy season. Since the amount of electricity generated is the same, therefore, the excess electricity is transferred to the national grid. This difference amount is adjusted in the monthly bill of the house owner.
For example- A house owner has a 3KW solar power system. During summers, he consumes 700 units of electricity whereas, in the other seasons, the consumption is reduced to 300 units. In this case, the balance amount is adjusted. This provides you the benefit of reduced billing in which you have to pay only the fixed bill charge on your monthly electricity bill.
Types of Net Meter:
- Single-phase net meter: All the meters up to 3 KW are single face net meters.
- Three-phase net meter: All the meters above 3 KW are the three-face net meter.
How does Net Metering Billing Work?
No government or DISCOM in the country provides you the payment for the excess electricity that is transferred to the main grid. Thus, the difference in the amount of electricity is always adjusted and provides you an option of reduced monthly bills for a long period of time. Produce more today to save from tomorrow is the main motto of net metering.
Net Metering Policy
As per the net metering policy, In the case of individual houses or property, 80% of the PV plant is approved for the net metering. For example- A power plant of 3 KW will be allowed 80% of the 3 KW under net metering.
But when you live in an area that has a transformer, you will be allowed to have only 30% of the net metering as an individual.
Net Metering Application Process
The Application Form for net metering can be collected from the concerned Divisional Office Discom. You may also download it from the official website of Discom or Nodal Agency. Every state has its own policies and procedures for the application process of net metering.
How to install net metering?
Step 1: Your application form is to be submitted to the DISCOM along with all the necessary documents and the permit fee. The list of documents may vary from state to state thus you can get in touch with your respective distributing company (DISCOM) to check out the list of required documents.
Step 2: Once your registration process is done, DISCOM carries out an inspection of the location where the rooftop solar project is to be installed. On the basis of this inspection, the application status is decided.
Step 3: On the approval of the application, further important details like the solar modules to be used, plant size, and the layout structure is required to be submitted to the DISCOM for approval.
Step 4: Site Inspection is a very important process in the installation of the Net meter. Once the site is approved, an agreement is signed between the house owner and the DISCOM in which the old meter is replaced with the net meter and is all set to provide the benefits.
Step 5: Final Installation ensures that you are ready to avail the services of net meter and all its benefits.
disclaimer: In case, you want to go for a net - meter, it has to be applied by the homeowner itself. read the document to apply for a net meter.
How to Check Net Meter Reading?
You can check the net meter reading and get the number of units generated through your rooftop power plant. After this, you can compare them with the number of units consumed. There are companies like L & T, Secure and HPL who are net- meter approved companies which help you to find you difference reading. The difference in the number of units will let you know the excess or surplus units. In this way, you will be able to know the amount adjusted and the net amount you need to pay to the electricity board.
The main purpose with which people wants to install a solar power plant is to have reduced electricity bill and save on the monthly allowances. Apart from this, you can have a PV module installed at your houses, schools petrol pump, offices, hospitals, factories, etc. If you are at Lucknow, Kanpur, Allahabad, Meerut, Noida, Varanasi, etc., you can contact the authorized dealers of Loom Solar for an engineer visit on these registered service numbers or the official website for more information.