It's called a net meter, capable of spinning backwards and building up energy credits on the existing grid when solar conditions are at a peak and creating more power than needed. Auric Solar recently installed the system and the Smith Farm immediately started reaping the benefits. "This is a 69 panel system which produces almost 19 kW on a sunny day. It sounds like it is basically enough to run the entire farm and most of the home here.
Kevin Holmes of Auric Solar says the interest in solar across Utah and Idaho is growing rapidly and once consumers are educated on the benefits of solar, the concept becomes obvious. "Once we explain how people buy electricity now and how that is changing, it becomes a no-brainer. We do have pretty cheap electricity here in Idaho but it is increasing at anywhere 7 to 10% annually so you can see that a system which is warrantied for 25 years and is expected to last anywhere from 50 to 60, 15 to 20 years from now, power will be over triple what it is now. When we tell people we can lock in what they are paying for power, it's a no-brainer." It cut the Smiths' electrical bill in half for both the shop and the house.