Solar

Why Keppel Prince Solar

OUR GUARANTEE

Our guarantee is that you will get value for money solar systems installed safely and properly by competent local tradesmen. Keppel Prince Solar will support our customers long into the future.

We purchase quality components that offer the best mix we can find of quality, performance and price.

We ensure that our installers work safely and to the standard we’d want if they were installing solar on our own homes or businesses.

We started our Solar Business in 2010 and we plan to be here for the long run – supporting our customers and the products we sell and install.


Experience Counts

Keppel Prince started looking at a Solar Division in 2010. We installed our first domestic system on May 1st, 2011 and our first commercial system on November 14, 2011. Since then we’ve installed solar onto 1,500 homes and 150 businesses, schools and hospitals across SW Victoria and the Goulburn Valley – totaling over 10MW of rooftop solar.

There are 760 retailers who’ve come and gone in Australia’s solar industry since 2011. We’re not one of them!

KPE is proud to have grown over the years into one of the larger Solar retailers in regional Victoria and we continue to learn from our experience so we can support our customers for many years to come.

Projects

Portland Solar 3.7KW

Date: 2020

Location: Portland

Size: 3.7 KiloWatts

Off Grid Solar

Date: 2020

Location: Melville Forest Area

Size: 10.4 KiloWatts OffGrid Solar & Battery

Price Assurance

Keppel Prince Solar is proud to have been selected by LG Electronics to become part of the LG Solar family. As agents for LG solar panels Keppel Prince Solar can now provide our customers with access to LG’s Peace of Mind that flows from the work they’ve done to position LG as something very special when it comes to solar panels.

It’s true that as one of the world’s premium solar panel brands, LG does cost you more  – but there also seven great reasons why you should consider spending extra money when buying a solar system for your home:

  1. LG offers a 25 year Product Warranty on all of their Neon 2 Korean made panels
    • 10 or 12 years is the standard Product Warranty offer in the solar industry with a few brands offering 15 years.
    • LG’s Neon 2 panels provide you with 25 years Peace of Mind that your solar system will still be performing.
    • And the warranty is issued and supported by LG Australia with an Australian Warranty Claim office.
  2. LG’s solar division is part of one of the world’s leading Electronics Consumer Brands
    • LG’s total sales were USD54 Billion in 2019
    • They’ve sold more than 1.2 million solar panels in Australia since 2010
    • They are here to stay – unlike 364 panel brands that were here in 2013 and no longer service the Australian market or the home-owners who bought their panels back when they were here.
    • LG has more solar design patents than any other solar manufacturer
  3. It’s a fact that solar panels produce a little bit less electricity every year that you have them. But some brands’ performance drops off faster than others. LG panels generate more electricity for longer than any other brand readily available in the market
    • The industry standard is that panels will still produce 80% of their starting capacity under standard test conditions after 25 years use;
    • LG panels will still produce 90.1% of their starting capacity after 25 years.
  4. On any given day LG panels will produce more electricity than other brands
    • They’ll start earlier and finish later due to superior low light efficiency.
    • They have better temperature tolerance than most other brands, so on days when other brands struggle in the heat, LG’s panels will still be performing strongly.
  5. LG Panels are built to last
    • Forget the IEC testing standards, LG solar panels are regularly tested to 3 times the IEC standards by LG’s in-house testing laboratories to ensure they’ll go the distance.
    • LG panels have a double walled frame ensuring they can survive in winds of up to 350kph providing Peace of Mind as our climate becomes more and more extreme.
    • LG panels are tested in more extreme hail conditions – handling 50% larger hailstones travelling 20% faster than the industry standard hail tests.
  6. LG leads the solar industry in environmental stewardship:
    • LG walks the talk – powering their manufacturing facilities from dedicated solar farms, minimising each panel’s impact on the environment;
    • After considering all factors involved in installing an LG panel on a rooftop in Australia, they recover their full energy payback in as little as 1 year and 1 month – 20% quicker than other brands.
  7. LG panels look great on your roof.

As is the case with many electronic devices, when you buy solar you get what you pay for. That’s not to say that there aren’t some lower priced components that are both efficient and reliable… And by the same token, it doesn’t mean that, just because a particular component is much more expensive than other options, then it will perform better or be more reliable than lower cost items.

At Keppel Prince Solar we pride ourselves on the fact that we are continually reviewing the performance and quality of the panels, inverters and mounting frames that we offer in systems that we sell.

Keppel Prince Solar has been a CEC Approved Solar Retailer since 2017

We buy panels from factories where we’ve visited and carried out an assessment of their Quality Assurance systems.

We offer inverters that we know are reliable in the grid conditions that exist in the areas we sell solar into.

And we pay our sub-contract installers enough that they can work to the high safety and quality standards demanded in this day and age.

When you buy solar from Keppel Prince Solar you are also buying the peace of mind that comes from knowing that we’ll be there if you need us!

Keppel Prince Solar has a range of domestic solar system packages that we update regularly as circumstances dictate. Each of these packages details the full system cost and the significant State and Federal government rebates that are available to people buying solar for their homes.

Federal government solar rebate

The Small Renewable Energy Scheme controls the allocation of support payments for EVERY solar system below 100kW in size, installed anywhere in Australia. The scheme works by estimating how much solar energy your system will generate between the year that you install it and the end of 2030.

  • The scheme divides Australia into 4 solar zones depending on historical levels of solar radiation. Level 4 is the lowest generation zone.
    • In SW Victoria, Postcodes 3293 – 3302; 3309 – 3319; and 3334 – 3337 are currently in Zone 3. Everywhere else is Zone 4.
    • In the Goulburn Valley, the whole region is now listed as Zone 3.
  • In 2021 the scheme allows for an estimate of 10 years’ generation by your system – creating one Small Technology Certificate (STC) for each MWh of electricity generation calculated.
  • Power Companies are required to buy quantities of STC’s each year to confirm that rooftop solar installation quantities are meeting the government’s targets as part of efforts to reduce Australia’s dependence on fossil fuelled electricity generation.

Keppel Prince Solar sells the certificates created by systems we install to those power companies and we credit the estimated STC sales value off your price when we quote your solar system.

State government solar rebate and loan – the Solar Homes Program

The Andrews government introduced the Solar Homes program in June 2018. It provides a fixed rebate of $1,850 off the price of a “standard” domestic solar system. It is available to both “owner-occupiers” and Tenants/Landlords of rental properties.

There are two qualification hurdles that applicants have to pass to qualify for a Solar Homes rebate:

  1. The property (house and land) must be valued at less than $3 million; and
    1. A Council Rates Notice is the accepted proof.
  2. The household taxable income must be less than $180,000 p.a. in one of the past 2 years
    1. A “household” is defined as anyone listed on the rates notice; or
    2. The tenants in a rented property

If you qualify for the Solar Homes rebate, then you automatically qualify for a Solar Homes Interest Free Loan of $1,850. The only qualification is that we have to prove to Solar Victoria that the system we’re installing will save your household more per year than the loan repayment of $462.50.

Call us on 55238888 or email solar@keppelprince.com.au to get copies of the offer documents

DESIGNING YOUR SOLAR

Being a CEC Approved Retailer comes with standards that Keppel Prince Solar takes seriously. Everyone who talks to us about solar for their home will receive the same considered and calculated approach to working out what is the best solar solution for your home. To do that we’ll ask you for a copy of a recent power bill so we’ve got the information we need to determine:

  • How much electricity you consumed for every half hour over the past 12 months;
  • What you pay for your electricity at the time of day when you consume it;

We’ll discuss the system design with you and, depending on your address, we’ll look at your home using aerial or satellite photography and assess which of your roof spaces are most appropriate to install solar onto. In many cases we can be confident about what panels we can fit onto which roof space.

  • If there’s any reason to doubt the imagery we’ll schedule a site visit so that we’re all sure about what can fit where;

We’ll also apply for a connection pre-approval for your address from Powercor so that there are no surprises after you’ve committed to buying your solar system. As you will see, Feed-in-tariff revenue is an important part of the financial benefit for most homes with solar in regional Australia. Unfortunately, you can’t take it for granted that Powercor will allow you to export your excess solar power into the grid if there is already an excess of solar installed in your neighbourhood.

We’ll then insert all of that information into a very smart piece of software that models how much the solar system would have produced each half hour over the same 12 months and values the solar energy according to what would happen to it:

  • If your home was using electricity at the same time the solar system was generating it, then the solar power is valued at the price you pay for power at the time;
  • If the solar system was generating more power than you were consuming, the excess will be exported to the grid and that power is valued at the current feed-in-tariff that the government requires your Power Company (Origin, RED, AGL etc) to pay you for power you send back to the grid.

 

At the end of that process we’ll have a report that provides an accurate assessment of the benefit the proposed solar system will bring by way of lower power bills once the system is installed and working.

Depending on circumstances and your requests, we may provide reports for 2 or more options (larger or smaller solar systems) so that you have the information you need to make an educated decision about which system you should buy.

Being larger users of electricity, many businesses pay a lot less for their power than households, so our task when designing solar for commercial buildings is slightly different. The focus of our efforts for commercial solar are to design a system that as much as possible, matches what the solar system generates through the day with what the site consumes – to maximise the financial benefit for the business.

Again, we’ll go through the process of obtaining consumption data every half hour over the past 12 months for the site, and we’ll model a number of different sized solar systems to identify the best outcome for the business involved..

Our task when designing off-grid solar and battery systems for a home or business is much more about assessing three key factors:

  1. What is the peak power that the site is likely to demand as a worst case;
    • If the system’s inverter(s) are too small then the site will suffer black-outs or brown-outs and we aim to avoid that.
  2. How much energy is the site likely to need on a day to day basis through the peaks of summer and winter demand;
    • The amount of energy we need to harvest will determine the minimum size of the solar array required for the site.
  3. How much of that energy is going to be needed outside the hours when the solar array could be expected to be generating power;
    • That is the amount of energy we need to store in the batteries while the sun is shining each day (and of course, it is also the minimum capacity of the battery required for the site) so that the site has the energy it needs to get through the night until the sun is shining again tomorrow.

Once we know how large the array, inverters and batteries have to be then we can present options to the site owners for where the array of panels can best be located, where the inverters and batteries should be located, and finally, to provide a firm quote so that the project can get started.

SOLAR ENERGY

Unlike solar hot water systems which take heat from the atmosphere to heat up water, Solar PV systems convert the energy in light into electricity through a conversion reaction which occurs when light is absorbed by the cells in a solar panel.

The cells are chemically treated slithers of a silicon crystal which give off electrons when exposed to (sun)light.

It is a relatively simple process that involves no moving parts and, with some care, should be a reliable source of electricity for you for over 25 years.

The stronger the sunlight, then more electrons are shed and the higher the amount of electricity generated. Because the cells live in a harsh environment and are continually shedding electrons, their daily production capacity will slowly decrease by between 10 and 20% over 25 years.

The panels produce direct current (DC) electricity which is converted to alternating current (AC) electricity (matching the Grid) within the circuits in the system Inverter.

As you might expect, because the system performance relies on sunlight being absorbed by the silicon cells, a solar system will produce far more electricity in the summer than in the winter – when skies are typically cloudy and the sun is lower in the sky.

Just how different can be seen in below, a typical estimate of average daily power production from a 6.6kW solar array in the Portland area:

The “industry standard” for household grid connected solar is a 6.6kW DC array feeding DC power to a 5KW inverter that then feeds AC power to either your house or the grid.  In Victoria homes connected to the single phase grid are restricted to a maximum 5kW export to the grid.

Because of the way electrical grids operate, when you are generating power it will be consumed by your household first, before any excess power is exported to the Grid. The power you export will most probably be consumed by nearby neighbours in your area.

Similarly, when your solar PV system is not generating electricity and you require power, you will draw your electricity from the Grid.

Because your solar system is connected to the Grid, if the grid goes down or is out of specification, your solar system will also shut down – so there is no possibility of your solar feeding power into the street whilst repair workers are working on the wires.

Having analysed over 2,000 homes energy usage over our time in the industry, our experience is that, with their normal consumption patterns, most households in rural/regional Victoria will struggle to use more than 40% of the electricity their solar systems generate. 25%-30% is more likely the self-consumption ratio for most of our customers.

Because so much solar energy is routinely fed back into the grid from solar systems, there are some locations where Powercor is restricting the amount of export back into the grid for prospective new systems.

Summing that up, homes with solar benefit from their self-generation of electricity through two avenues:

  • The replacement of electricity that they would have purchased from the grid; and
  • The credit they get for feeding electricity back into the grid.

Typically in 2020, assuming you are allowed to export to the grid, the total benefit generated by a 6.66kW solar array in SW Victoria is in the range $950 – $1,400 per year depending on how much is self-consumed and what people pay for their electricity from their supplier.

Provided you qualify for a Solar Victoria rebate, expect to pay around $4-5,000 for a standard 6.66kW grid connected solar system depending on which brands are supplied in the system.

For commercial sites thinking about solar, you can budget on spending around $1,000 (ex GST) per kW of solar installed onto your roof. With larger systems (bigger than 30kW) the cost can reduce to around $850-900 per kilowatt of solar installed.

As the name suggests, Hybrid systems are a mix of grid connected and battery fed solar.

A hybrid inverter has the added benefit of being able to feed electricity into a battery or energy storage during the times when your system is generating more power than your home needs. In South West Victoria, most 6.6kW solar systems can charge a 6.5kWh battery throughout the year. In the Goulburn Valley – where there is more sunshine – they’ll charge a 10kWh battery throughout the year.

Then, after the solar system has shut down in the evening and until the sun is up in the sky next day, the hybrid inverter will draw electricity from the battery to meet demand in your home. You will only buy power from the grid once the battery is run down or when your demand levels exceed the capacity of the inverter and battery.

One advantage that Hybrid inverters provide is that they are configured to isolate themselves (and your home) from the grid during a grid outage. If there is a grid outage, the hybrid system can provide limited back-up power to that isolated emergency circuit and keep your home running with limited power. Typically you would have some lighting, the fridge and some power points available to you.

The hybrid inverters we supply will continue to run your house and charge the battery for as many days as a grid outage lasts.

Typically in 2020, assuming you are allowed to export to the grid, the total benefit generated by a 6.66kW solar array tied to a battery around 6kWh in capacity in SW Victoria is in the range $1,300 – $1,800 per year depending on how much is self-consumed and what people pay for their electricity from their supplier.

Provided you qualify for a Solar Victoria rebate, expect to pay around $13-14,000 for a standard 6.66kW grid connected hybrid system with ~ 6kWh of storage capacity, depending on which brands are supplied in the system.

Given that lithium batteries should have a life of 15-25 years, a payback period of 7-8 years for a hybrid system can be an excellent investment as well as bringing Peace of Mind to your household in areas where the grid is prone to regular black or brown-outs.

 

 

With the push from Power Distribution Networks to limit expansion of already stressed systems, a solar micro-grid energy storage system is increasingly becoming the norm for anyone building in rural and remote areas.

When you combine 6 and 7 star building designs with individual panels making 400W and more these days, it is possible to build a reasonably compact array capable of generating all of the electricity needed to power a modern home as if it was connected to the grid.

35-40 panels on either a ground frame or a shed roof  is enough to power most homes.

Around $40-45,000 is a good starting point to budget for a complete off-grid system as an alternative to paying for an extension to the distribution network.

Testimonials

GMHBA STADIUM:

LIGHT TOWERS

We are pleased to acknowledge our appreciation of you [Keppel Prince] and your team’s efforts and commitment, and the great working relationships your guys had with Kane. The level of co-operation and professionalism has often been commented on, and was very much appreciated by our staff. You should be as proud as we are of your skills, contribution and the result.

Mission Statement

To build a quality team of people and maintain a safe, positive working environment. This enables us to deliver outstanding solutions for our clients and a sustainable future for our staff, suppliers, community and business.

Business Vision

Building and maintaining a sustainable future for all.