Frequently Asked Questions
1What is Solar Energy
Quite simply, it is energy that is produced directly from the sun. It is by some order of magnitude the most powerful energy source on earth. It will never run out!
2Is Solar Power widely used around the world?
Yes, Germany has 1.4 million PV Solar Systems installed across the country. Japan also has over 1 million installed PV Solar Systems and in Australia 15% of homes are powered by solar energy.
3Are there any running costs associated with Solar Power?
None. Once your system is installed, electricity production is completely free. There are no ongoing running costs.
4Is Solar Power Affordable?
Absolutely! In fact, recent price drops in the technology have made it significantly cheaper than diesel. The average family would recover the full cost of a 2kW system in less than 2 years. The more energy you consume, the shorter the payback period.
5How much will I save?
Solar Energy is the single best investment a Nigerian household or business could make. The average family will save N17.5m over 25 years, assuming that the cost of fuel does not rise. In reality, the savings will be much greater as fuel prices are due to rise by 50% once the fuel subsidy is removed in full.
6How is Solar Energy converted into electricity?
Photovoltaic (PV) panels are designed to be able to capture the raw energy emitted by the sun and convert it into direct current (DC) electricity. They are typically mounted onto the roof of premises so as to get maximum exposure to the sun. The more exposure they get, the more electricity they generate.
7What happens next?
The DC electricity generated by the PV panels needs to be converted into alternating current (AC) electricity, as this is what most of our electrical appliances are run by (computers run on DC current). This is done by an Inverter, which takes the DC current fed directly from the PV panels and turns it into AC current. This AC current is then used to power all of your electrical appliances.
8What happens at night when no Solar Energy is being produced?
This is where the battery array comes into play. During daylight hours, as well as supplying power to the inverter, energy is also transferred to the batteries to charge them up. When the sun goes down, the inverter automatically sources its energy from the battery bank, providing you with a continuous supply of electricity.
9How long do the PV panels last for?
The panels can last up to 50 years, and come with a full 25-year manufacturer’s warranty. We guarantee a performance efficiency of 90% after 10 years and 80% after 25 years.
10How long do the batteries last for?
We provide high quality deep cycle batteries that have a useful life of 5 years.
11How long does the Inverter last for?
The average life of an inverter is 10 years, and comes with an 18-month manufacturer’s warranty.
12How do I know which Solar Power System to purchase?
This depends on your total daily electricity consumption. The more you consume, the bigger the system you will need to power your home or business.
13Don’t I know that based on the size of the generator I use?
No. The size of your generator is an indicator of how many appliances you can run simultaneously. The more powerful the generator, the more appliances you can run simultaneously. This is called your electricity load capacity and is determined by the size of your inverter. Our Energy calculator allows you to work out your maximum load requirement, based on the maximum number of appliances you need to operate at the same time.
14So I’m clear, what’s the difference between my electricity usage and my electricity load?
Electricity usage is the number of units of electricity that you use each day and is measured in kilowatt-hours (Kwh). Electricity load is the amount of energy that is required to run all the electrical appliances you use simultaneously.
15Does the inverter need to be the same size as my generator?
In simple terms, yes. However please bear in mind that generators are usually sold with reference to your maximum electricity load, and you typically only use maximum load for relatively short periods of time each day. Very often, you don’t actually need the size of generator you are using. And of course, the bigger your generator, the more money it costs you in fuel.
16How much energy can the PV panels produce each day?
A 1Kw system will produce between 4kWh’s and 5kWh’s of electricity each day. The amount of energy produced by the PV panels is based on the amount of ‘Peak Sunlight hours’ received. In Nigeria as a whole, this ranges between 4 and 5 in the South, to as high as 9 in the North. The higher the peak sunlight hours, the fewer PV panels are required to generate the same amount of energy. This is one of the main reasons why solar energy is more highly suited to Nigeria than the majority of countries; she is blessed with one of the highest levels of solar radiation in the world.
17What is the average level of electricity usage per household in Nigeria?
Recent studies indicate that the average electrified Nigerian household would consume between 6kWh and 8kWh each day if they received 24 hours of electricity. The actual recorded consumption rate is only 1.5kWh per day as most households do not receive 24 hours of electricity. So a 2kW PV system would produce between 8kW and 10kW of electricity each day, enough to power the average Nigerian household for 24 hours a day.
18How much maintenance do they require?
Very minimal since there are no moving parts there is nothing to break down. The panels may need to be given a wipe every few months to remove any dust on them. That’s it. As part of our service we offer free maintenance for the first year.
19Where are the PV panels installed?
They are typically installed on the roof so they are exposed to the maximum amount of sunlight. They can also be installed on the ground if there is insufficient roof space (this will only apply in the case of businesses with large premises that require huge electricity generation capacity).