What is a grid connection application?
Prior to installing solar, your electricity distributor will check to see if your local electricity network can support your new system.
Who is your electricity distributor?
Your electricity distributor is different from your energy provider. Check your state below to find your allocated distributor:
- ACT: Evoenergy, Essential Energy
- NSW: Essential Energy, Ausgrid, Endeavour Energy
- NT: Power and Water Corporation
- QLD: Energex, Ergon Energy
- SA: SA Power Networks
- TAS: TasNetworks
- VIC: Powercor, CitiPower, Jemena, AusNet, United Energy
- WA: Western Power, Horizon Power, Synergy
If you are unsure of who your energy distributor is, you can check your bill or ask your energy provider
Let's go through some quick questions
Do you need grid-connection approval prior to installation?
What happens if the application is rejected?
Your energy distributor will recommend changes that will allow the distributor to approve your system.
How long does it take to receive approval?
Approval varies significantly between each distributor and can take up to 30 business days. We suggest calling your distributor to check their approval times.
What happens once you get approval?
You’re ready to meet your solar retailer!
Getting organised - questions to ask your solar retailer
For your application process to go as smooth as possible, make sure you and your chosen retailer are on the same page.
Here is a quick checklist provided by CEC:
- Will you as my solar retailer submit my application?
- Do I need to sign the application?
- Is there a cost associated with my application, and if my energy distributor rejects my applications can I get a refund?
- Can I have a receipt of submission?
- How long does my energy distributor take to approve applications?
- Who do I contact if I have further questions?
- Can you send me a copy of the approval notice?
Lock in a date where you will be home for the installation of your solar panels. That way you can meet your installers, and check off any unforeseen changes to your system.
Once your installer is onsite, request to check their online accreditation ID. At least one installer onsite should be accredited with the Clean Energy Council.
Track how your system is going and see real-time benefits
Most systems will have a monitoring solution connected, ask your solar retailer to set this up for you once the system has been installed. It’s a great way to check in on your system, optimise your energy usage and take advantage of extra savings!
It also helps you feel confident and proud of your solar choice. Plus, you’re ready to show off to your neighbours.
Getting your documents in order
Before your installer leaves, make sure you have all documentation on warranty, insurance, and how the system works.
CEC has compiled the perfect list for you to cross-check
- Information on the safe and effective operation, maintenance, and optimisation of your system
- Shutdown and isolation procedure for emergencies and maintenance
- A recommended maintenance schedule
- A copy of the installation commissioning sheet
- Certificate of Electrical Safety or equivalent in your state/ territory (Bonus tip! Ask your installer to CC you in the
- email to your energy provider)
- Warranty information for each product installed
- Handbook and product information for equipment supplied
- A list of actions to be taken in the event of an Earth fault alarm
Configuring your meter for solar
To accurately measure how much solar is being generated by your system, and how much energy you are either drawing from or feeding back into the grid, your meter will either need to be replaced or reconfigured.
Let's look at some faq’s about your meter
Who organises the configuration of the meter?
Your solar retailer may offer to complete this step for you, always ask to see the receipt of this work being completed.
How do I submit a request to have my electricity meter configured?
Simply contact your energy retailer and request their meter configuration process.
What documentation do I require?
Documentation to be provided to your energy retailer is dependent on the state you live in.
The Clean Energy Council has provided an outline of what you may require, however, we also suggest calling your energy provider to make sure you have submitted all the information at once.
- Confirmation of grid-connection approval from your energy distributor
- Electrical work request or equivalent document for your state or territory
ACT and VIC: Certificate of Electrical Safety
NSW: Certificate of Compliance for Electrical Work
NT and SA: Certificate of Compliance
QLD: Certificate of Testing and Safety, Certificate of Testing and Compliance
TAS: Certificate of Electrical Compliance
WA: Electrical Safety Certificate
How long will it take to have my electricity meter configured for solar?
Electricity retailers and consumers must come to a mutual agreement to determine an adequate timeframe for meter installation (CEC). Check-in with your energy retailer to see how long the process will take.
If your solar retailer has taken the steps to provide the documentation to your energy retailer, request to see the reference number so you can follow up.
Brighte tip: Once you have your installation date, call your energy retailer to see how soon after they can attend your home and upgrade your meter.
The information provided in this article is general in nature and does not constitute advice. Please consider your own personal circumstances prior to making any decisions