5 Reasons to get a commercial solar installation.

Posted January 2024

Especially in the last few years, as South Africa’s energy crisis has worsened, solar installations have become increasingly popular with South African residential homes. When it comes to commercial solar installations, however, many South African businesses don’t yet realise the specific benefits involved. Whether you’re looking at getting solar for your offices, your manufacturing plant or agricultural operation, here are five ways your business can benefit from a solar installation: 

1. It protects your product.

No matter the industry, product or service, a company’s profit is always tied to its productivity. Simply put, if you’ve got less ability to produce your offering due to less power, your output – and therefore your turnover and sales – will be less. If you’re unable to meet the demand of your customers who have ordered products, this not only affects your ability to bring in revenue, but also your reputation in terms of customer service. Then there’s also the labour aspect: if there’s no power and production shuts down, hours of labour are wasted. In short: time is money. With a commercial solar installation, you keep your production levels steady, which maintains your revenue levels (along with your customer obligations).

2. It helps reduce your operational costs.

Generator (fuel) costs are on the rise, making them an increasingly expensive solution to power interruptions. In contrast, a commercial solar installation will quickly be offset by the energy savings you enjoy, since you’ll be producing power. And, you’ll also be able to avoid surcharges on your energy bill. How is this possible? By staggering your start-up loads to your system so that your demand charge will be lower. With time of use (TOU) tariffs during certain peak hours of the day, you’re charged high tariff rates which can vary in different seasons. However, during these peak hours you can schedule your battery to be used during those hours and then during off peak hours (lower tariff rates), solar or Eskom (with the priority being solar first) is used to charge the battery back up.

In this way, you’re able to use solar or Eskom power to charge your batteries during lower tariff times, and then use battery power during high peak times. In this way, you avoid incurring peak tariff rates and with staggered load start ups you can avoid peak surcharge rates that could cost your business tens of thousands of rands each month. Remember that the more solar panels you add, the less battery and grid energy you will use.

3. You’ll get significant tax benefits.

Installing a commercial solar system means you can offset the tax on the cost of the installation – and reclaim the VAT too. Even if you start with a battery backup system and only a small number of panels, the entire system is deductible, which means huge savings for your bottom line. To learn more about this, read about the tax benefits your business could enjoy.

4. You can offset your financing.

If you’re financing your business solar installation through your bank, your monthly repayment will usually be offset by the cost savings you’ll enjoy – and this is particularly true if you’re able to avoid energy surcharges and/or peak time usage as outlined in point 2 above. 

5. Feeding back.

Dependent on your municipality, energy supply and electricity setup. You may be eligible to feedback and receive credits for units fed back into the energy suppliers grid.  

If you’re investigating a commercial solar solution for your business, it’s important to get a turnkey system that is specifically suited to your output needs and your production schedule. By making sure you have a system that’s correctly configured for your business, you can reap the maximum benefits to make the investment more than worthwhile to your bottom line.

Want to install a commercial solar system for your business? Talk to us today.