Why does my Vivint Solar bill change?

SolarCalendarFebruary 7, 2019

First, let’s go over who should receive a Vivint Solar bill. You will only receive a monthly solar bill if you have a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) or Lease Agreement with us. If you purchased your solar panels with cash or loan, you won’t receive a monthly invoice from us. 

How a Vivint Solar PPA and Lease Agreement are Billed

With a PPA, your invoice is based on the energy your panels produce each month, which means your invoice total will change slightly from month to month. With a lease agreement, your invoice will remain the same each month (it will increase annually as set forth in the lease agreement), so the seasonal change discussed below should not apply to you.

More on PPA’s and Seasonality

Most people find that they save money with their PPA, but those savings will look different when compared to other payment plans. It’s common to think that as the weather starts warming up, your panels will receive more sunlight and give you smaller energy bills. You may feel concerned or confused when your Vivint Solar invoice arrives and is higher than last month. Don’t worry! This fluctuation is completely normal. 

Your monthly invoice is based on the clean energy your system produced the previous month, not on your overall energy use. So, while you may be using the same amount of electricity each month, your panels will most likely be producing more energy in the summer and less in the winter. This means that your monthly invoice will most likely go up in the spring and summer months when your solar panels are likely producing more energy, and decrease in the fall and winter when solar panel production typically slows down.

It isn’t a bad thing to be producing more clean energy, even if it results in a slightly higher invoice. Remember, the extra energy that your system produces is sent back to your local utility, and, depending on the utility, you likely are receiving credits on your utility bill that you can redeem later in the year when the system isn’t producing as much. 

More on net metering 

An Example

Here’s an example scenario to help give you a better understanding:

Say you live in sunny California, and your system produces an average of 150 kWh in July, and your current PPA rate is 25 cents per kilowatt hour. 

July: 150 kWh x 0.25 per kWh = $37.50

In December, where there’s less daylight, you produced 90 kWh.

December: 90 kWh x 0.25 per kWh = $22.50

This will be your baseline before other taxes and fees, not including any credits you send back to your utility (those will show up on your local utility bill). It’s also important to note that your July data will show up in your August statement and your December data will show up in your January statement.

Keep in mind, there are many factors that can affect your production like snow covering your panels, shady areas, and angle of the sun, but the biggest reason your production changes is because of daylight hours.

Net Savings

The best way to see how much solar is helping you save is to look at your total yearly production instead of just monthly. Remember that this increase on your invoice is seasonal, and while your combined solar and utility payment may be higher in warmer months than what you were previously paying, things should balance out in the winter when your combined solar and utility bills will likely be less. 

Where can I see my solar bill online?

You can view your Vivint Solar invoices anytime in the account center.  Use your username and password to log in to your account, and click on the tab “Manage Payments.” You will then be able to review your monthly statement. If you need any assistance logging into your account or setting up your account, please give us a call. You can also view your panel’s production in the Home Energy App (HEA), available on Apple or Android devices.

Other Ways to Save

Tired of high energy bills from your utility? Check out 12 Tips to Save Money and Energy.

How to Go Solar

Vivint Solar makes renewable energy a simple and affordable alternative. We take care of everything from solar system design, to paperwork and permitting, to installation and maintenance.

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