Solar System Pay Back Periods

Important Notification:The information you are seeking regarding Solar System Payback Periodhas now been updated on our new Solar Market Website HERE.

Please refrain from using the information on this page as an accurate source of information for solar system payback period and proceed to the updated page.

Ok, so you’ve noticed that solar is popular at the moment and you’re hearing from your friends that it’s a great investment.

What you need to work out is:

  • Whether or not it’s a good investment in your circumstances,
  • How long it will take to pay for itself before you start seeing a benefit financially,
  • How the returns on the initial investment compare to putting your money into shares or even just putting it into the bank at 4%.
  • If you’re paying for the system on finance, you want to be sure that the return on investment is quite a bit more than what you’re paying in interest or else what’s the point?

We’ve recently launched our new Solar Savings Calculator which helps you determine the payback and financial returns from investing in solar plus it will also estimate what your bills will be after installing your system. Check it out and play with the variables.

Estimated Daily Production

City 1.0kW system 1.5kW system 2.0kW system 3.0kW system 4.0kW system
Adelaide 4.2kWh 6.3kWh 8.4kWh 12.6kWh 16.8kWh
Alice Springs 5.0kWh 7.5kWh 10.0kWh 15.0kWh 20.0kWh
Brisbane 4.2kWh 6.3kWh 8.4kWh 12.6kWh 16.8kWh
Cairns 4.2kWh 6.3kWh 8.4kWh 12.6kWh 16.8kWh
Canberra 4.3kWh 6.45kWh 8.6kWh 12.9kWh 17.2kWh
Darwin 4.4kWh 6.6kWh 8.8kWh 13.2kWh 17.6kWh
Hobart 3.5kWh 5.25kWh 7.0kWh 10.5kWh 14.0kWh
Melbourne 3.6kWh 5.4kWh 7.2kWh 10.8kWh 14.4kWh
Perth 4.4 kWh 6.6 kWh 8.8 kWh 13.2 kWh 17.6 kWh
Sydney 3.9 kWh 5.85 kWh 7.8 kWh 11.7 kWh 15.6 kWh
Data Source: PV-GC spreadsheet based on the CEC GC Design Guideline

Where in your solar journey are you?

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Beginners Guide to Solar Power

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Understanding Batteries

Off-Grid Systems

For some households a battery system can be of great benefit and minimise a home’s reliance on the grid. However, it’s important to understand for a battery to be useful your solar system needs to be generating excess energy for the battery to store, which you can then use at night or when the sun is not out.

When selecting a battery, you’ll want to invest in a system that is most suited to your home and can drive the best return on investment (ROI). Despite a larger upfront cost, a higher quality battery may significantly increase your ROI.

    Battery systems start from $6,000 and costs can vary greatly based on the following factors:

  1. Cycle Life-Time

    The number of times a battery can fully charge and discharge.

  2. Battery Power (kW)

    How fast it can be charged or discharged.

  3. Storage Capacity (kWh)

    The maximum amount of energy a battery system can store.

  4. Battery Management System (BMS)

    An electronic ‘smart’ system that gathers data and manages the battery ensuring it does not overload or operate outside of its safe functioning zone..

  5. Inverter

    Battery systems require their own inverter if your solar system does not have a hybrid inverter.

  6. 'All-In-One Unit’

    A system which includes the battery, BMS and an inverter all in one unit.

  7. Warranty

    Length of time or cycles the battery system is under guarantee.

  8. Blackout Protection/Backup

    It’s important to note this is not a common feature of a battery system and could cost thousands of dollars to include. Blackout protection not only requires additional components but also a specialised installation and rewiring. For grid-connected homes, the cost for blackout protection can outweigh the benefit.

Additionally, if your purpose for adding battery is to go Off-Grid and become completely independent from the grid you will need to ensure your solar system can generate enough energy to power your home and your battery system is large enough to store this energy. For homes in metro areas going Off-grid is not cost effective and is only recommended for those in remote areas with limited access to the grid. Off-grid solar systems with battery start at approximately $30,000.