Homeowner Blog

George Riley

Recent Posts

How Green Are Green Energy Tariffs?

George Riley · 14 Jul 2021

In the last few years there has been a surge in clean or renewable energy tariffs - in May, over half the tariffs on the market were advertised as ‘green’. But there are conflicting views on the ‘greenness’ of electricity tariffs, often coming from suppliers looking to prove their stance is the right one.

So how green are green energy tariffs really? And what’s the best way to ensure your home is running on zero carbon power?

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Topics: Tariffs, Solar PV, Environment

Are Solar Batteries Worth It in 2021?

George Riley · 07 Jul 2021

Good Energy estimates that the UK will need 23-55 GWh of domestic storage to reach net zero, which is equivalent to 1.5-4 million Tesla Powerwall sized batteries in people’s houses. Why? Because battery storage in homes is vital to help people use more renewable energy, reduce the evening peak demand and avoid costly transmission upgrades to the national grid.

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Topics: Battery storage, Tesla Powerwall

UK Net Zero Targets: How Close Are We?

George Riley · 26 May 2021

Climate change is fast becoming an unavoidable part of our daily lives. The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has reached a level not seen for over 3 million years. Ever more regular wildfires, heavy flooding and heatwaves foreshadow the devastation a destabilised climate could cause.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has laid out a pathway for emissions reductions which should limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C, the level estimated to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change. This includes almost halving emissions by 2030, and reaching net zero by 2050. The ‘net’ means that the most difficult emission to eliminate, like farming or aviation, could be offset with carbon removal (via natural means or emerging technologies).

So how close are we to reaching the UK net zero targets?

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Topics: Environment

Talking All Things Solar with Mark Sanders

George Riley · 12 May 2021

We went to speak to Mark Sanders, one of our most enthusiastic customers, about his experience with solar PV and Tesla Powerwall.

Watch our chat in the video below:

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Topics: Battery storage, EV charging, Solar PV, Tesla Powerwall

eddi Turns Excess Solar into Heat

George Riley · 29 Apr 2021

Many of our clients desire energy independence, to be insulated against rising bills and polluting power. It’s one of the most common reasons for investing in solar PV.

This is why we’re always interested in ways to help people use more of the solar power they generate at home, boosting efficiency and saving money. So today we’re looking at a device that can turn surplus solar energy into heating for your house - the eddi.

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Topics: zappi, Solar PV

Time of Use Tariffs: Saving the UK Grid?

George Riley · 21 Apr 2021

If you’ve spent much time trying to find the best energy deal, you may have come across the term ‘time of use tariffs’. It’s more exciting than it sounds - if you’re interested in Britain’s evolving energy system.

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Topics: Battery storage, EV charging, Tariffs

Solar PV Monitoring Solutions: The Best Apps and Platforms

George Riley · 01 Apr 2021

Image: SolarEdge.

Since solar panels are static, there’s little to actually, well, see when they’re generating. Sure, it’s nice to start receiving smaller energy bills but, if you’re like most of our customers, you’ll want to dig into the performance data every now and then.

As well as checking when the most solar power is being generated (a useful reminder to turn on the dishwasher and make the most of that free electricity), solar monitoring is great for reviewing past output and comparing performance. Sudden drops can indicate faults that need fixing, or help assess if it’s worth giving the panels a clean.

Wondering which solar PV monitoring solutions are the best? Read on...

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Topics: Solar PV, Tesla Powerwall, Inverters

Type of Use Tariffs: OVO Energy’s Innovation

George Riley · 11 Mar 2021

We talk a lot about time of use tariffs, but now there’s a new kid on the block - type of use tariffs. The first of these has been announced by energy supplier OVO and is designed to reward EV owners with lower cost car charging.

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Topics: EV charging, Tariffs

How Do Electric Cars Reduce Pollution?

George Riley · 25 Feb 2021

Think back to the last time you took the Tube, ran beside a congested road, or walked in rural wilderness. Air pollution is tangible, in a way that perhaps other planet-harming emissions aren’t, and so the benefits of tackling it can be more apparent and immediate.

Public Health England says that ‘Poor air quality is the largest environmental risk to public health in the UK.’ Long term exposure to air pollution can affect the lungs and heart with chronic diseases and cancer. Short term exposure can exacerbate asthma and affect lung function. In total it’s estimated that air pollution is responsible for 28,000-36,000 premature deaths a year in the UK.

What can we do about it? Air pollution is a huge topic with many interconnected causes and solutions. So in particular, we’re going to take a look at EVs and air quality, asking: how do electric cars reduce pollution?

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Topics: EV charging, Environment

Smart Export Guarantee Tariffs: Which is the Best Rate?

George Riley · 10 Feb 2021

The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) has now been in effect for over a year, since it came into law on January 1st 2020. It’s the mechanism to ensure solar PV owners are paid for the power they send to the grid, ending the policy void that existed since the Feed-in Tariff closed to new applicants in March 2019.

According to the SEG, energy suppliers with over 150,000 customers must offer an export tariff with a rate greater than zero. The SEG is available for customers with an MCS-certified renewable energy system under 5MW and a second generation smart meter.

With zero as the minimum, at the very least you can’t be charged for being relieved of excess solar power. However, suppliers don’t have to give you very much for it. So how much are they offering in practice?

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Topics: Tariffs, Solar PV