With the “water scarcity” banner valid until April 2022, the population is starting to look for solutions to pay less on the electricity bill. One of the alternatives, the generation of photovoltaic solar energy, had, in June, 5,891 MW of installed power among low voltage consumers, being responsible for a movement to flexibilize banks, fintechs and companies specialized in credit lines for finance the equipment. The stimulus has brought a 28% growth in one year in the volume financed, but having solar panels is not just a question of money.
For low voltage customers, homes, small businesses and industries, for example, who pay from R$300 to R$12,000 on their electricity bills, photovoltaic distributed generation is an outlet designed to generate their own energy and reduce the value paid for consumption. In Brazil, according to data from the beginning of June this year from the Brazilian Photovoltaic Energy Association (Absolar), 99.9% of all micro and mini distributed generation connections are from solar photovoltaic sources, with a total of 505,415 photovoltaic systems connected to the network, with the residential segment accounting for more than 75%.
In the market, the advance of technology and consumer demand have forced a move to make the equipment needed for generation cheaper, as well as boosting access to credit to finance the purchase. But what to consider with so many options available?
According to the Energy Efficiency consultant at Senai-PE, Ricardo Chalegre, even before arriving at the bank, a series of factors need to be evaluated.
“You have to first see if you have available usable area on the roof, without shading, and structure to support the additional weight to be placed. Usually this approval is given by a civil engineer, and it needs to be done even before hiring a company for installation. You must take into account an increase of 18 kg per square meter in your roof”, explains Chalegre.
Also according to him, after the approval of an engineer, it is necessary to verify whether the available area will meet the need for generation, considering the number of panels needed to meet the energy demand, which can be done through simulations with companies specialized companies and Senai itself. “After that, you still need to evaluate the technology, weighing the cost/benefit of the equipment, ask for a budget and, only then, go after funding”, reinforces the Senai-PE consultant.
For generation, two inverter technologies are taken into account, which vary in terms of costs and useful time. “We have conventional inverters, which came first, and inverters with more advanced technologies. Conventional ones are guaranteed between five and 10 years. from five to 10 years. The newer microinverters, on the other hand, have ten-year warranties, which can extend up to 25 years – these are equipment that the manufacturer’s warranty is much longer, their useful life is longer and they are safer for long-term financing”, he summarizes. .
The inverters are responsible for making the conversion that enables the use of electrical energy generated from photovoltaic solar energy. The price difference between the systems can reach 30%.
According to Chalegre, equipment with a lower guarantee is more robust, has greater potential, but is more vulnerable to burning due to some problem and can easily stop working. A microinverter is more expensive, but if you have an electrical problem it affects a small portion of the system, as it is usually connected to one or two equipment boards.
After all this phase of evaluation and suitability for installation and want to finance the purchase of equipment, design and installation, it is time to look for an institution that provides credit for this purpose. When contracting, in addition to the credit cost itself, it is necessary to keep in mind all the points listed above, as well as the deadline to reach the balance point between the energy cost already paid and the value of the installments.
“We have seen an increase in the number of credit lines and an improvement in conditions in several states in the country. You can finance and pay the installment of the financing with the savings you have on the electricity bill. What’s complicated is still some warranties requested, but overall this has improved. The cost of credit has already varied between 0.79% per month for individuals and 0.74% for companies, with terms of up to ten years”, summarizes the vice president of financing at Absolar, Camila Ramos.
According to specialists, a financing in such a way that the value of the installment is close to the savings of the account, usually reaches the equilibrium phase when paid in installments between 60 to 72 months. “The market works with the price of peak kilowatt hour (kWp installed), this value varies a lot according to the dollar, but we can consider the price of R$ 4,500 for a centralized inverse system and R$ 5 thousand for R$ $5.5K for microinverters. This price considering the acquisition of material, labor, everything ready”, explains Chalegre.