Residential Solar in Colorado and Xcel Energy
Colorado's Xcel Energy is One of the Country's most Solar-Friendly Utility Companies
Many people are considering “going solar” for their home’s electrical energy supply. In the state of Colorado, Xcel Energy company is the major utility supplier. In December 2018, Xcel Energy became the first major US utility to pledge to go carbon-free, aiming for 80% carbon reduction by 2030, and 100% reduction by 2050. They offer two types of programs to choose from for which to tap into their metering system.
Once homeowners decide they want to install a solar panel system (also known as a PhotoVoltaic system), and have chosen a solar installation company to work with, they must initiate a Solar Application Process with Xcel Energy. This begins the Xcel Energy Solar Team’s involvement with your project. They will conduct an Interconnection Study, along with a System Details evaluation. Then the Solar Team will review the Site Plan and Line Diagram. Once approved, your system information is sent to their engineers for Engineering Review. Xcel Energy highly recommends that the system is not installed until the application has passed all of their engineering screens. The Solar Team will ultimately grant you permission to operate your solar system, and decide which net meter is appropriate for your situation.
How Net Metering Works
Once your solar panels and inverter are installed and activated, the energy from your panels travels to the inverter then to the production meter. The energy is then used by your home. The net meter measures electricity as it flows from the grid into your home or business, and when electricity flows from your PV system onto the grid. Xcel Energy will determine which type of net meter is most appropriate for your system.
When you install an on-site solar system, the amount of electricity your solar system produces varies throughout the year. In some months, you may produce more electricity than you need and in other months, you will use more electricity than you produce. If you use more electricity than your solar system produces, Xcel will bill you for net usage. Your choice on the Solar Bank Election Form during the e-signature process at the end of your solar application or assignment of contract process determines how extra energy will be saved to use later, and how you will be billed or credited.