Solar Systems FAQ

How does a home solar system impact the sale of your house?
Getting a solar system in your house would improve its potential for being sold and would up the price. If you want to take your solar system with you when you move, perhaps rent-to-own or a subscription service would be a better option.
What are the main benefits when it comes to renting vs buying?
If you buy and own your solar system, you can make more monthly savings on electricity each month as you won’t be paying installments. However, buying a solar system is like buying a car or a cellphone: you can either pay a once-off up-front cost, or you can lease/rent the system, or you can pay it off over time. A solar subscription helps you to avoid upfront costs and takes away the stress of maintenance; while the rent-to-own option lets you to pay off the system over five to seven years.
How do I find out what my kw/h usage is?
Your municipal utilities bill is an easy way to check how much electricity you use each month beyond just how much you pay. To give you a rough idea, the average South African home uses about 2 000 kilowatt-hours (kw/h) per month.
Will I still get an electricity bill after solar is installed?
Yes. Unless you are completely off the grid, it would still be included on your utility bill, but the amount should be a lot less than you paid before.
Can I go off the grid with my solar panels?
In theory, yes. In practice… [insert Hippo warning grunt here]. Just because you can go off the grid with a solar energy system that includes battery storage, doesn’t mean you should. Relying entirely on solar power leaves you relying on clear skies and long, sunny days, which is why – for the time being, and while the technology develops – off-grid living is really only recommended for properties that don’t have any access to the grid at all.
How long does it take to install solar?
It depends on the type of installation or system, but it can take between one and 12 weeks.
Do I need to replace my roof to install solar?
Solar energy systems have a long lifespan of between 25 and 35 years. It’s costly to remove and reinstall solar panels, so if your roof does need maintenance, it’s best to take care of that before installation.
Do solar panels produce power when the sun isn’t shining?
The amount of power your solar energy system can generate is dependent on sunlight. As a result, your solar panels will produce slightly less energy when the weather is cloudy, and no energy at night. However, if you add batteries to your system, at night you can utilise excess power produced during the day.
Do solar panels still produce power during blackouts or loadshedding?
You’d think so… but if you have a grid-tied solar PV system it will likely be programmed to switch off during load shedding. Reason being, if Eskom’s maintenance crews are working on the lines when the grid is down, your solar power system could put their lives at risk. However, if you have a solar battery system installed you can create your own “microgrid” at home. This will keep your power going during blackouts, and will keep the Eskom crews safe.
What happens if my solar panels produce excess energy?
You can feed this extra energy back into the power grid and get paid for it with feed-in tariffs or reverse feed tariffs. This is called ‘net metering’ and is not offered by all municipalities in South Africa. In order to do this, your solar system needs to have a bi-directional meter to transfer electricity to the grid. Currently, you can bank 72 cents for every kilowatt hour.
Will my insurance go up if I install solar on my roof?
Your insurance policy will need to be updated once you have the system installed. It will likely push up your premiums.
Does solar impact my property value?
Yes, your solar system will increase its value as it’s a highly valued asset that eliminates inconvenience, especially in a country like South Africa that experiences loadshedding.
What permits and compliance documents are required?
You will need to apply for interconnection, which would involve an inspection and an Electrical Certificate of Compliance (CoC) being issued by the partner installer. Also, permits must be approved by your municipality or Eskom before the application can be approved.

The entire process can take up to two weeks.

Our trusted partners