What is Net Metering?

(Updated May 13, 2020) Are you thinking of using a renewable “green” energy technology to generate your electricity and reduce your monthly costs? Net Metering might be the ideal solution for you.

Many small and large electricity consumers are looking at Net Metering Solutions to help offset or reduce their hydro bills. However, what exactly is Net Metering? Moreover, what is the difference between Net Metering and MicroFit/FIT? Let us help explain. 

Solar photovoltaic (PV) systems on your building or property, work exceptionally well with the Net Metering Program Initiative available now for qualified homes and businesses. The installation of a Net Metering Solar System allows you to use the power generated from your solar system to offset your existing hydro bill and reduce your utility electricity costs well into the future.  


  1. Solar panels generate electricity.
  2. The electricity generated from solar panels is used to power the building first.
  3. Any extra electricity generated is temporarily sent to the local grid.
  4. If you supply more electricity than what you take from the grid over the billing cycle, you’ll receive a credit toward future energy bills. The credit can be carried forward for up to 12 months.
  5. Electricity is drawn from the local grid when the building’s electricity needs are higher than the amount of electricity generated by the solar panels.
  6. Net-metered customers’ monthly electricity charges are calculated based on the difference between the amount of electricity used from the local grid and the credits received from any electricity sent to the local grid from the solar panels.

Eligibility criteria for Net Metering Program Initiative include, but are not limited to:

  • You must generate electricity primarily for your own use; and
  • The electricity must be generated solely from a renewable resource such as Solar PV.

So what is a MicroFIT or Fit System?

The MicroFit / FIT Program was a Government incentive program, initially promoting the use of renewable energy systems for businesses and homeowners. This program is now closed as of 2017. The power generated from your renewable solar system was sold at a fixed rate to your hydro company for a set period. It was connected to the hydro grid with a separate meter to track energy production.


With a Net Meter System, all power generated by your system will go directly to your property’s main electrical service panel to satisfy your power needs. Energy generated beyond your needs will be fed back into the hydro grid.

A new Bi-Directional Meter is installed into your existing meter base. This meter will record all energy consumed by your property from the grid. The excess energy produced from your solar system travels back past the bi-directional meter and into the grid, winding the recorded kWh off your meter. In the event your system produced more energy than your property used during any given billing period, you would have a surplus meter reading.


Some buildings or houses have enough usable roof space to install a renewable solar system large enough to offset all the property’s electricity usage for the year. However, your Net Metering System must be sized correctly to balance your solar energy generation and your electricity consumption.

For example, an average house uses between 9000 and 10,000 kWh per year. A 10kW, 40-panel system produces an average of 12,000kWh per year, creating a surplus 2000kWh balance on your hydro bill. You can carry forward excess balances (called net metering credits) from any billing period on your hydro bill for a rolling 12 months period to offset additional power needs.  Therefore it is important that your net metering system is sized correctly to avoid creating free power for your LDC.


To help support your renewable needs, we have created a unique solar program where you have everything to gain! For all of our installed solar systems, we have included a unique 10-YEAR POWER PRODUCTION GUARANTEE AND PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE PROGRAM. This program is designed to give you peace of mind feeling protected, knowing Arcadian stands behind your solar system installation.

Interested in learning more about our unique solar program? Download the program guide today.


To better serve our customers, we have developed a remote-assessment tool that will conveniently allow us to gather the information we would normally during a site-evaluation. With this information, we can provide you with solar system options, savings and cost.