How does the Community Solar Program work?
The Sydney Community Solar Program brings together the best solar products, providers, and local community groups interested in helping people switch to solar and/or battery power for their home. The community groups participating are Pingala, GetUp!, 350.org, and Solar Citizens and ParraCAN.
We invite everyone to come along to one of our relaxed education events to learn about how solar and batteries work. For those interested in getting solar, there are special bulk buy deals available as well, with a portion of each sale going back to the non-profits and community organisations that helped spread the word.
Am I obligated to purchase by registering?
No! Solar and battery technology can benefit a lot of people but we understand it’s not for everyone. That’s why we hold the community events – so you can come learn about it in a safe, relaxed environment and see if it’s right for you.
What is unique about going solar with the Community Program?
The Community Solar Program offers exclusive, people powered solar and battery deals from trusted local solar companies that you can’t find anywhere else. As part of the Sydney program, you’ll also be able to participate in Sydney’s biggest virtual power plant!
In terms of going solar, you get the peace of mind of a fully engineered system design, independent quality assurance check on each installation, and extra warranty coverage so you are protected for the long term.
What is the Sydney Virtual Power Plant?
A virtual power plant is when hundreds of home batteries work together to provide electricity when the community is in need. For example, if there is not enough electricity from the normal power plants, the grid can pull electricity from all the home batteries to avoid having a blackout. The benefit to you is that you get extra money for allowing your battery to support the community in this way. You can read more about it in our blog post here.
How does this program support local jobs?
We’ve handpicked solar companies that have been serving their local communities for years to be a part of this program, and our ShineHub office and all of our employees are located in Sydney as well. We like to keep things local!
How did you select the products for the Community Program?
One of the best parts of the Community Solar Program is that you know all the products have been vetted by solar engineers, industry experts, and partnering solar companies. We look for proven, reliable products that are backed with Australian technical support and a great warranty. For the Sydney program, we have multiple panel, inverter, and battery options available so that you can get something that works perfectly for your home.
How did you select participating solar companies for the Community Program?
We work with the Australian Solar Council’s Master Installer network and the Clean Energy Certification program to select the top local solar companies in the area. We review their ASIC, ABN, and Fair Trade company history, check that their insurances and licences are up to date, and for companies who will be installing batteries we check that they have the Clean Energy Council solar and battery certification training as well.
How much will I save?
Each person’s savings can vary based on how much energy you use and how many panels we can fit on the roof, but if it’s a good fit, you can save up to 90% on your electricity bills. A few participants in the Community Solar Program that we did in the Northern Rivers area are getting bills that are less than $10 per month – even in the middle of winter! Click here to read one customer’s story of how he got a $3.79 electricity bill after installing his solar and battery system.
How does purchasing with the program support local community groups?
We believe in giving back to local groups that are helping make the switch to solar energy because they know what’s needed in the community most. As part of the Community Solar Program, we donate back to the community groups when one of their members goes solar so that they can continue to do their great work. This allows us to bring down the cost of going solar and at the same time, divest our marketing from traditional methods to a community give back approach.
What is the expected life of the batteries?
All batteries in the Sydney Community Solar Program have a 10-year warranty and are designed to last up to 15 years. That was a critical factor when selecting the batteries because a lot of the other batteries out there only have 3 to 7-year warranties, which isn’t a good deal for homeowners in our opinion.
How long will it take to get my system installed?
The first people to sign up on September 17th can get their system installed in October, with installations continuing from there. If there is a particular time you want it installed just let us know and we can work towards that as well.
Here are the steps once you place your solar or battery order:
- Your order is reviewed by a solar engineer and submitted for grid approval.
- Your equipment is ordered and installation date is scheduled.
- Installation is completed by your local solar company and doubled checked by ShineHub engineers.
- You enjoy the solar lifestyle!
If you haven’t already registered you can do so at https://staging.shinehub.com.au/sydney