Going solar isn’t quite as simple as just installing panels on your roof. Once your panels are installed, your utility will come to your home, inspect your system, and install a bi-directional meter. This meter enables them to measure how much electricity you’re sending back out to your neighbors. We’ve found this process to be an issue for many Duke Energy customers.
Over the last few weeks, many co-op participants in Duke Energy’s territory (east and west Florida) have shared their frustration with their utility on our listserv. Complaints include delays of bi-directional meter installation, failure to install the correct type of meter, and delays in issuing approval to flip the switch on systems.
We’ve also heard complaints from co-op participants who’ve received incorrect utility bills. The most recent example was posted on our listserv by a co-op participant whose solar system was installed mid-January. After three months, Duke utility statements showed zero production credits. All the while, the customer called repeatedly and was assured the problem would be resolved. The fourth month came around and after repeated posts on our listserv, receiving tips from our solar community, the customer posted on Duke Energy’s Facebook page. Over four months went by producing sunshine and after a Facebook post, Duke immediately sent a representative to the home to learn they had initially installed the wrong meter.
Although we are keeping Duke quite busy these days, out of all the utilities in Florida, the same complaints seem to surface over and over again around Duke Energy’s slow meter installation, interconnection process and billing issues.
We’ve developed a list of steps to take if you are having issues getting your system turned on or with your bill once your system is in operation:
- Call the Duke Solar desk/PV Help/Renewable Energy line at 866-233-2290 (press 5 for Florida)
- Email Florida Customer Account Specialist at: FloridaCustom@duke-energy.com
- Post to the Duke Energy Facebook page
- Tweet at: @DukeEnergy, @DE_AnaGibbs, and @DE_PeveetaP
- File a complaint with the Florida Public Service Commission
Thank you to the many homeowners that have jumped in to help your fellow solar homeowners find a resolution. This demonstrates the benefits of building a strong community of solar supporters. We are hopeful this will help Duke Energy develop a process for timely interconnection and accurate billing.