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Do you still get paid for electricity that you use?

The microFIT program pays you for all the electricity you generate, regardless of whether you use any of that electricity in your own home or not.

In fact, the way microFIT systems are installed now, the electricity you produce will go directly to the grid. You won’t use any of it first in your home (though in reality your house will usually pull it all straight back from the grid once it gets there). So how much you use in your house has nothing to do with microFIT.

Our own system was set up “in series,” which means the electricity we produce does go into our house first, and then any excess is sent out to the grid. This was allowed in the very beginning of the microFIT program. Regardless, we are still paid for all the electricity we produce. There is a meter in between our inverter and our electrical panel and it measures all the electricity we produce, regardless of where it ends up. Our payments are based on that meter.

One interesting side effect of being setup this way, is that we can use the two meter readings to tell exactly how much solar power we are using at any point in time, versus how much grid power. We can also tell exactly how much power we have actually exported to the grid. The Historical graphs and logs page has records of this.

If you want to know more, you can read about how the parts of our system are connected.