Time-of-Use & What It Means for Solar

The biggest change to come out of California’s Net Metering 2.0 policy in 2019 is the time-of-use (TOU) rates provision.



Time-of-use (TOU) rates explained

The previous Net Metering 1.0 policy granted a more direct 1:1 payoff system. For every kilowatt-hour (kWh) of solar energy you’re able to put back into the grid, you get a bill credit for one kWh of utility-generated electricity.


Now, with TOU, as demand for energy across the entire grid fluctuates throughout the day, rates change to match. In the early afternoon and evening, rates are going to be higher as demand on the grid increases. The time-of-use rate provision becomes a key factor in considering your rate of return or your return on investment. But there are ways to make sure your system is working as hard as it can for you.

Making TOU work for you

Time-of-use rates can work to your advantage. But a lot can depend on how your solar energy system is installed, how efficient it is, when it receives the most energy, and how that compares to the general trend of energy use for the electric grid at the time.


Get a professional technician to come and take a look at your home. An experienced technician understands the sun’s path to your home throughout the year, which is important to know the best placement for the panels to generate the most energy during the highest demand time of the day. When you maximize the energy generated from your system, there’s more leftover to sell back to the grid, and when it’s generated at a high demand time, you’ll get more money for your kWh.


Am I losing out with TOU?

Absolutely not! TOU incentivizes installing your solar energy system as efficiently as possible so you generate the most solar energy at the time of day when there is the highest demand for it. That’s how you can get the best resell rates and the biggest bill credits from your utility company.

Call to get a quote and have one of our expert technicians come out to survey your home. Get first-hand advice from someone who knows what it will take to make the most out of your investment in going solar, TOU considerations included.