Steph and her family lives in a leafy suburb in North Sydney and have a small 1.5kW solar system. With two kids at school, the family uses most energy during the afternoons, evenings and weekends.
Steph's solar system is affected by heavy shading from surrounding trees in the mornings and afternoons making her solar production window short - 11:30am-4:30pm in Summer, dropping down to just 11:30am-1:30pm in Winter.
Showing the household's electricity usage and solar production together:
HOW SOLAR ANALYTICS HELPS ME...
Just understanding when they produce solar was a huge revelation for Steph and her family:
"We were really shocked that our solar-producing window is so small. We just assumed that we would be generating solar while the sun is shining."
Steph has made a lot of changes to the way she and her family use energy now:
"We use timers to run large appliances during solar hours, and have reduced our use of the air conditioning system."
Steph recognises that load shifting isn't easy, but has a routine that works for her family:
"I find that even when I'm at home, I'll still set the timers on the dishwasher and hot load laundry loads to run during our solar hours. I get busy and often forget about our solar during the day."
Since Steph's solar system is small and she is already load shifting a lot of her major appliances, our main recommendation is to investigate the cause of the shading on the panels and whether it can be rectified.
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