Billing FAQ

The main differences between NEM-ST (the successor tariff) and the original NEM tariff are these NEM-ST changes:

  • A one-time, non-refundable interconnection fee of $132 is due with our NEM-ST application for systems generating less than 1 MW. Systems larger than 1 MW will incur an $800 application fee, and the owner is responsible for interconnection study and grid upgrade costs, if any. Customers participating in the Single Family Affordable Solar Housing (SASH) program (Grid Alternatives) will not be charged an interconnection fee.

  • The application must include a statement certifying that a warranty of at least 10 years has been provided on all equipment and installation.

  • Customers will pay certain “non-bypassable” charges on the kWh delivered from the distribution grid. Non-bypassable charges cover Public Purpose Program charges, nuclear decommissioning charges, Department of Water Resources bond charges, and competition transition charges.

The Level Pay Plan, or LPP, isn’t available to net metered customers. When your net metering begins, your LPP will terminate and any charges or credits will be applied or due at the time of conversion. Residential NEM customers will be placed on a Time of Use (TOU) rate in the future.

We’ll continue to collect monthly reads from your meter(s). If you have a smart meter, data from the meter may be collected and transmitted wirelessly to SDG&E.

In addition to the information currently on your bill, a Net Energy Metering Summary will also be displayed on your bill. This can be found on the second to last page of your bill. This summary provides a monthly accounting of your energy usage and generation credits if you generate more electricity than you use during a monthly billing period.

Generation credits will be applied to the electric energy charges on your net-metered solar electric account. Generation credits can’t be used to offset other charges such as monthly minimum charges, customer charges or demand charges. These are costs to SDG&E that aren’t recovered in energy rates and therefore by law, can’t be reduced by net generation credits. They also can’t be used to offset charges billed on gas and non-solar electric meters.

Monthly fees may be applied but will vary depending on your rate and level of usage. For example, residential customers pay a minimum charge of $0.329 per day (CARE, FERA and Medical Baseline customers are billed at a reduced minimum charge of $0.164 per day.) The minimum charge is applied only if your total electric charges are below the minimum. If your electric charges are above the minimum, then the minimum charge is already met.

Although you aren’t required to pay monthly, you’ll still receive a monthly bill which includes your net metering summary. When no payment is due, the front page of your bill will display a message telling you that payment isn’t required at this time, along with your true-up date and the current account balance. At the end of your annual settlement period, the first page of your bill will display the amount due and the payment due date. We encourage you to carefully track your monthly charges so you’re not caught with a large balance due at true up.

No. If you generate more electricity than you use during a particular month, you’ll receive a generation credit for the month. We keep track of the generation credits and apply them to energy charges accumulated during other months within the 12-month settlement period.

First we start with the excess amount of energy you generated for the month, which is determined by subtracting the number of kilowatt hours (kWh) you used from the number of kWh you generated. Then we multiply the excess kWh by the price per kWh to determine the credit you will receive. Because the price of energy can vary, we perform this calculation separately for each month your system generates more electricity than you use. The dollar value of your excess generation is carried forward and used to offset charges for energy supplied by SDG&E.

During the billing year, retail credits are generated based on the excess generation returned to the utility. The credits are applied during that billing month. Any leftover credits are carried forward to subsequent billing months. Credits are not applied to previous billing months until true up. At annual true-up any remaining retail credits are applied to any remaining cumulative balance from earlier months.

Residential and small business customers aren’t subject to disconnection for non-payment during the 12-month settlement period. However, if at the end of the settlement period there’s a balance due and you fail to pay this amount by the date requested, your electric service will be subject to disconnection. During the 12-month settlement period, if you receive late notices regarding past due amounts please contact our Customer Contact Center at 1-800-411-7343.

Agricultural and large business customers are subject to disconnection for late payments during the 12-month settlement period because monthly payments are required.

No, the Level Pay Plan isn’t available to net metered customers.

At your settlement month, the top of the first page of your SDG&E bill will display “Net Energy Metering True-Up Bill.” The bill will also display the amount due and the payment due date. If you generated more electricity than you used for the full settlement period, your true-up bill will also include the Excess Generation Credit applied to your account.

On your true-up bill, your Net Energy Metering Summary provides the information you need to reconcile the full settlement period. This includes your net consumption or net generation for each billing period, your excess generation credit, if applicable, any credits and payments posted to your account and your current account balance.

On the Net Energy Metering Summary included with your true-up bill, if the YTD “Total kWh” is a negative number, you have excess generation and are entitled to a payment. The amount of your payment is displayed as the “Excess Generation Payment” on your summary. If the “Total kWh” is a positive number, you used more electricity than you produced over your true-up period.

CA Assembly Bill 920 (AB920) specifies that excess generation remaining at the end of your true-up period be compensated at the Net Surplus Compensation (NSC) rate. This rate may fluctuate monthly, as it’s based on a rolling 12-month average of spot market prices. Based on current market prices, the rate is approximately $.04 cents per kWh.  Learn more about this calculation.

Your Excess Generation Payment will be applied to your account. SDG&E will apply this credit to any outstanding bill amount that you owe at the time of your true-up. You may call to request a refund check for any amount that’s left over or leave it on the account to apply towards future bills.

The credit you see on your NEM statement is calculated using the full retail rate for energy. This retail value can only be used to offset charges for energy provided by SDG&E within your true-up period. However, at true up, any remaining excess generation will be purchased by SDG&E at the wholesale rate.