What does an apartment association need to know about the energy world?

The energy sector is unfamiliar to most people and confusing, which is why apartment associations value a good partner who would take the thinking and carry out the necessary work. The versatile energy partner not only sells electricity and gas, but also offers various services that are important to the customer in the field of energy: from inspecting and renewing the electricity system, performing the necessary electrical work to offering energy-saving solutions.

One of the biggest mistakes that apartment associations tend to make is a superficial attitude towards the maintenance of the electricity system. Electrical systems are not eternal. They have the property of fatigue over time and must be inspected, tested and analyzed and, if necessary, cleaned, tightened or renewed.

It is often overlooked that if the main protection of a building’s electrical system exceeds 100 amps, it is mandatory to enter into a written agreement with the operator, whose task is to monitor the electrical system.

The main purpose of the operation service is to ensure the safe use and smooth operation of the electricity system. To do this, the person responsible for the electrical system, ie the operator, must analyze what activities need to be performed in the system and how to organize the use of the system in order for the system to be safe.

Driving is not inherently very complicated. Although this service is very well regulated by laws, acts and standards, the market often sees situations where the customer does not know what to expect from the service and the operator does not fulfill the obligations imposed on him. Therefore, it is especially important to choose a partner who can be trusted so that the work is not done halfway.

Why solar electricity for an apartment association?

In addition to professional electrical work, Eesti Energia also offers its customers a number of new energy services, many of which can bring significant financial savings or other added value. For example, there has been a decent boom in the solar electricity market.

Solar panels are the best and easiest way for an apartment association to start producing 100% clean energy, save on utility costs and increase the value of their real estate.

There are several aspects to the benefits of solar panels. By consuming electricity produced with solar panels, the apartment association can save on electricity purchased from the network, network fees and taxes. The electricity left over from consumption can be sold to the electricity grid and thus earn money.

Solar panels are helpful for all appliances that run on electricity. As a rule, however, the panels are connected behind the general electricity meter of the cooperative and they help to cover the general consumption of the cooperative. The roof of a typical five-storey apartment building can hold about 90 panels, which can cover all general electricity consumption such as lighting, electric heating, security systems, etc.

Whether a solar power plant can be installed in a house depends on several factors. For example, the age of an apartment building is not an obstacle if the roof structure and load-bearing capacity are in a condition suitable for installation.

Renovation and insulation of the house is also not a prerequisite for installing the panels. The return on both investments can be considered separately. The apartment association achieves the biggest victory and the best energy class by combining both variants, and Eesti Energia specialists can be called upon to help with more detailed expertise.

When will the investment pay off?

In the case of apartment associations, the payback period is usually between 6 and 10 years. It depends, for example, on the consumption habits of the population, the cost of the solar electricity system, the cost of electricity and network charges.

The investment can be financed with a loan in such a way that the financial gain from electricity costs covers the annual loan payments. To do this, you need to find a suitable combination of the amount of the down payment, the loan period and the credit cost rate.

In order to find out what is the optimal amount of solar panels for a specific apartment association and the appropriate investment volume, it is recommended to contact Eesti Energia specialists. They help to identify technical possibilities and also perform object-based cost-benefit calculations.

Charging electric cars must be considered now

An important change that can be seen around apartment buildings in the coming years is the change in the car fleet. Instead of petrol and diesel cars, electric vehicles are starting to tone up, which means they need to be recharged.

If from this spring all the new apartment buildings have to be prepared for the installation of a charger in the parking places, then in the case of older houses this readiness has to be created. Eesti Energia offers electric car charging solutions under the name Enefit Volt.

Apartment buildings face many challenges when planning electric car charging solutions, which Enefit Volt helps to solve. The electrical system of the apartment building is limited in capacity and its construction does not generally take into account the charging of an electric car. If the installation is ill-considered, it is easy to overload the electrical system and the main protection in the house is applied, ie the building is left without electricity. To avoid this problem, a person who wants an electric car charger can buy amps for the building in the amount needed to charge their own car, but unfortunately this is a very expensive solution for building only one charger.

When installing electric car chargers directly on the main panel of a building, there may not be enough space for fuses. Even if the fuses of the first electric car charger can fit in, in the long run it is worth thinking that the possibility of adding a charger would remain with other residents. Building cabling from the main switchboard to the parking lot is a costly and time-consuming activity for an individual, as it requires a lot of different work that requires different permits.

If there are many different and separate chargers in a building, it is difficult to bill for the electricity consumed per car or apartment. Even if apartment owners give an example of a charger themselves, many will have a number of additional tasks.

When working in the electrical panel of the building and in the parking lot, the resident needs to get permission from the members of the apartment association. This means, for each additional charger, a general meeting of the KÜ, a common understanding of billing and connection capacity, documents on the building’s electrical system and the charger solution to be installed, and everything else.

Enefit Volt creates the readiness of chargers for the apartment building cooperative

In order to create the possibility of charging electric cars, one should think in the perspective of not one or two years, but five to ten years, because building capacity today is definitely cheaper than in a few years. It is important that readiness includes wisdom from the outset.

That’s why Enefit Volt installs a smart electric car charger panel, which means you don’t have to install the charger directly on the main panel. In the complete solution for apartment buildings, we use dynamic load control, which helps to make maximum use of the connection capacity in the building and save significant costs. The chargers also share free power, ie when one car’s battery becomes full, more energy is transferred to the other chargers. In this way, it is possible to avoid increasing the membership of the apartment association and inconvenient interruptions.

In addition, the readiness includes the transport of electrical cables from the main panel of the building to a smart shield, including work in the main panel, in the case of outdoor car parks, the transport of cable trays from the smart panel to parking spaces is added. We also make agreements with the cooperative for the monthly transmission of electricity readings so that the billing is transparent and understandable.

The smart shield is initially designed for 10 parking spaces. Once 10 chargers are installed, it is possible to add another similar shield next to it, which adds flexibility and keeps the initial investment reasonable. This is a very simple and effective solution, which creates a precondition for residents to have a worry-free installation of an electric car charger.

The user gets a smart charger at his disposal

When the readiness is created, Enefit Volt installs a smart charger for the resident in his parking lot, the costs of which are borne by the user of the electric car himself. The charger is connected to a single system together with other chargers in the apartment building, which is controlled by a smart shield. In addition, the resident does not have to obtain separate permits or documents, as the entire system has already been agreed with the cooperative.

Offered by Enefit Volti chargers is equipped with an RFID card reader and a soon-to-be-added mobile application that ensures that only the owner can use the charger.

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