Australians are spoilt for choice when it comes to companies offering solar feed-in tariffs, and while competition is usually good, it can make finding the right provider even harder. That’s why we’ve put together this guide that focuses on what’s being offered by one of the country’s biggest energy retailers – EnergyAustralia.
EnergyAustralia is one of Australia’s largest energy companies and solar providers. In recent years, it has emphasised its commitment to the environment, claiming ‘sustainability is part of who we are and how we operate’. As part of this, EnergyAustralia provides ongoing support for customers who have previously purchased solar with it, also offering feed-in tariffs to help customers earn a good return on their solar investment.
EnergyAustralia Solar Deals
Unlike some other retailers – such as AGL and Origin – EnergyAustralia does not have any special electricity retail offers for solar customers. But it does offer competitive feed-in tariffs (FiTs) on most of its products. FiTs are essentially a rebate for unused solar power generated by your panels and exported to the grid. Most solar customers receive a flat-rate of between 12c and 16.1c per kWh with EnergyAustralia, depending on the state.
EnergyAustralia Feed-in Tariffs
|Solar Panels||Feed-in Tariff|
Source: Canstar Blue Database, January 2020.
Victorian solar customers with EnergyAustralia also have access to the Time of Use (TOU) FiT. This is a new type of FiT whereby customers are paid varying FiT rates that reflect the demand for power. Customers that export during evening peak demand times will earn the highest FiT, while customers that export during off-peak times will receive a lower rate.
Feed-in tariffs are a great way to save even more on your power bill, however it’s important that you don’t take a tunnel-visioned approach. When comparing deals across different retailers, be sure to consider a variety of factors, including usage rates, supply rates, discounts and contract terms.
EnergyAustralia Solar Systems
It appears that EnergyAustralia is no longer retailing solar panels and inverters. In the past, EnergyAustralia has been known to offer solar packages, with brands such as LG, Trina and JinkoSolar offering solar panels, with inverters from either Enphase or Zeversolar. These systems were combined to create three tiers: the Premium System, Smart System and Saver System. As the names suggest, the Saver System was the most affordable, the Smart System included intelligent features, and the Premium Range offered greater performance for a higher price.
If you’re not sure what to look for when shopping for a solar system, then check out our buying guide here.
What about battery storage?
At the same time EnergyAustralia was retailing solar panels and inverters, the energy giant was also offering battery storage systems to customers who wanted to get the most from their solar panels. Essentially, battery storage allows you to capture and store the excess power generated by your solar panels to use later. By preventing the excess solar from exporting to the grid and using it yourself, you reduce the amount of electricity you’ll need to buy from the grid, helping to lower your bill even more. EnergyAustralia once had two popular solar batteries on offer – the Tesla Powerwall 2 and the Redback Smart Hybrid System.
- Tesla Powerwall 2: The Tesla Powerwall 2 needs little introduction. The successor of the popular Tesla Powerwall, the Powerwall 2 comes with an in-built inverter, 14kWh nominal capacity and is suitable for indoor and outdoor conditions. Check out our full Tesla Powerwall 2 review here.
- Redback Smart Hybrid System: The Redback Smart Hybrid system combines Redback Technologies hybrid inverter with the popular LG Chem Resu storage battery. The Redback Smart Hybid Inverter is designed for Australian conditions and features a slew of technologies that allow for easy management and monitoring of your storage system.
Maintenance and Warranties
If you’ve purchased an energy system from EnergyAustralia, you may be curious as to the warranties available on your products. EnergyAustralia previously sold products from leading solar brands that are backed by some impressive manufacture warranties:
- LG NeOn 2 Panels (Premium System): 25-year product warranty, 25-year performance warranty
- Trina Honey M Plus Panels (Smart/Saver System): 10-year product warranty, 25-year performance guarantee
- JinkoSolar Panels (Smart/Saver System): 10-year product warranty, 25-year performance guarantee
While the panels list some impressive warranties, the EnergyAustralia website does not appear to provide warranty information on its inverters. There’s also no indication that the systems are covered by an installation warranty to protect you from faulty workmanship. These are some more things you should check with EnergyAustralia.
Should my feed-in tariff come from EnergyAustralia?
While EnergyAustralia’s standard feed-in tariffs are reasonably competitive, other retailers such as AGL and Origin have solar offers with feed-in tariffs ranging from 15c to 25c/kWh. That said, a higher feed-in tariff doesn’t necessarily result in a better deal. When comparing retailers and electricity deals, customers should also factor in usage rates, supply rates, discounts, fees and contract terms to make a fully-informed decision. You can start comparing solar companies by using Canstar Blue’s price comparison tool and customer satisfaction ratings via the link below.
Original Author: Brendon O’Neill