Utility Net Metering (Offset Energy or Electric Bill Savings)
When you go solar, your electric bill is immediately reduced because you pull less electricity from the grid. Additionally, whenever your system generates more electricity than you are using at that moment, your excess power automatically feeds back into the grid – in essence spinning your meter backwards. The kilowatt hours (kWh) are credited to your bill for later use, for instance in winter when solar generates less electricity. When you end the month with excess kWh, the credits are reported to you on your bill. Credits roll over month to month but not year to year. Credits zero out on March 31 annually, then a new net metering year begins. This date aligns well with Washington’s solar generation, so that you can make the most of solar electricity generated in April.
Net Metering is designed to allow customers to generate electricity to offset up to 100% of what they use over one year, but net metering does not offset the utility’s monthly minimum or base rate. Learn more by going to your utility’s website and search for “net metering” or “customer generation.” Some large utilities are PSE, Seattle City Light, Snopud, Pacific Power, Tacoma Power, Avista.
In Washington, Net Metering is a one-for-one credit for each kilowatt hour when total solar system capacity is between 1 kW to 100 kW. Utilities are not required to offer Net Metering to additional customers once their minimum obligation is met so customers should check first with their utility to find out if net metering is available to you. Net Metering is an agreement between a utility and their customer, so be sure to get a copy of that agreement.
NWES facilitates approval of your solar system by your utility’s net metering program by providing the detailed interconnection application and electrical one-line drawing to meet your utility’s standards and requirements. And of course, we install to meet electrical code and building code standards.