I looked ahead to this juncture and decided to add more solar panels to combat this change. I wasn’t quick enough to get the new array installed before the end of 2019, so I’ll have to be happy with the current 26% federal credit instead of the 30% I would have gotten last year, but as you say, Oh Well.
I also penciled out adding batteries, but the solar project had a much better return.
Unfortunately, adding more solar will bump me from NEM 1.0 to NEM 2.0, which carries with it some “Non-Bypassable Charges” of about 2.5 cents per kWh for every kWh SCE sends me, regardless of whether I sent it to them first.
So I’m planning to switch to TOU-D-Prime and charge my cars during the day “behind the meter” to avoid as many NBCs as possible. This is workable because Prime’s daytime rates are the same as the nighttime rates, and there are no lucrative high Peak daytime solar rates that I’ll be forgoing by using power during solar Peak.
With this plan, I should be able to keep my annual costs down to something like $350, but of course I had to pay a net nine or ten grand for the extra solar. There’s no free lunch,
After I decided to add the additional solar, I got recruited into a program through SCE to add a Tesla Powerwall battery as part of a trial project to determine whether community distributed batteries can help mitigate power needs during shortages instead of building another natural gas peaker plant. That battery should allow me to shave off some of the Peak usage costs during Prime’s Peak evening hours and save me a bit more each year. But again, I have to pay for part of the battery after rebates and tax credits. This program is only available in parts of central Orange County, I think. I’m in Irvine. The whole battery project is moving slowly due to inability to get permits during the virus thing.