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How Does Net-Metering Work?

So you’re interested in getting solar installed on your home or your business, but not sure because the sun is only up about 60% of the time. No need to fret, net-metering is the solution.

One-For-One Energy Credit

Net-metering (NEM) is how a utility company takes your excess energy generated and provides you an equal amount of kilowatts at no additional charge. So basically, even though your solar panels only generate power in sunlight, this service allows you to “store” the energy generated for later use. It can be confusing so I’ll provide another example:

Let’s say you go out of town for a week. You unplug all your devices and use close to zero energy while your panels send all electricity to the grid. Your electricity, if there is one, will drastically lower than usual because of that week away. If it is zero, any additional excess will rollover to the next month.

If you use more energy than you produce, you will need to pay the utility company the net amount. A pretty small requirement for something that greatly benefits homeowners. For example, as a homeowner, you can save tens of thousands of dollars over the lifetime of their solar panel system. NEM is also a big reason why solar panels increases the value of your home. In fact, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) found that every dollar saved on energy through solar increases home value by $20.

Solar Edge Pros in Schertz
Panels we installed in Schertz

In Texas, NEM can be confusing because not every utility company is willing to provide this one-to-one credit for solar energy. Why not? Because it means less money for them. Some utility companies aren’t even willing to provide access to the grid if a property has solar panels. Fortunately, more utility companies face federal government pressure to accommodate the growing demand. The reason the federal government cares is two fold: (1) fewer carbon emissions and (2) reduces the demand on the aging electrical grid’s infrastructure. Utility companies will need to do more to support electric independence. That is, if they don’t want to become a thing of the past.

Get Paid To Go Solar

Some utility companies like CPS Energy in San Antonio also give a $2,500 to $3,000 solar rebate to homeowners. Commercial property owners can receive an even LARGER rebate for going solar.  However, you’ll need to have a registered contractor – like Solar Edge Pros – do the installation in order to receive the rebate. The reason utility companies are giving out rebates is because the federal government fines them for not producing enough energy from renewable resources. By going solar, you are saving them money and lowering the strain on the Texas electric grid! Most of these rebates won’t be around forever. CPS Energy’s rebate fund is capped at $2 million. Here is more information on rebates.

Additional Resources

Want more information on NEM? Book an appointment with one of our helpful consultants

You can also check out our FAQ’s page for more answers.

Discover the best type of solar panel for the San Antonio area.

Net-Metering FAQs

What is net-metering?

Net-metering refers to crediting property owners on the electric bill for excess energy production from their solar panels. Essentially, if you have solar panels and they generate more electricity (kWh) than you use at that time, the utility company will buy or store that excess electricity for you, then sell or give it back to you when your panels are not producing electricity (i.e. at night).

Can I make money from net-metering?

No. Your solar panels will not generate a cash income for you. Instead, they will reduce the amount you would otherwise spend on your electric bills, therefore saving you money long-term. Any excess electricity the utility company credits you through net-metering will simply rollover to the next month.

What if my utility company doesn’t offer net-metering?

Your solar panels will still produce electricity, but we would recommend getting at least one battery backup to store excess power your panels generate.

Your Local Solar Installer in San Antonio

Solar Edge Pros is a trusted leader in the solar energy industry. Since 2005, we have provided solar energy solutions to over 5,000 Texas residents making the switch to cleaner, greener, cheaper, solar power. We believe in the positive effects of working hard, treating people with respect, and doing the right thing. Our values transfer to both the customer experience as well as the culture within the Solar Edge Pros Family. 

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Meet The Author

David M

David M

David is an Air Force veteran with a Masters in Diplomacy from Norwich University. He is currently Solar Edge Pros' Director of Marketing.

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