Information About Customer-Owned Renewable Generation Grid Interconnections
FPL works closely with customers and contractors to ensure safe, efficient grid interconnections for renewable generation, such as solar panels. Customers with grid-interconnected renewable generation can participate in FPL’s net-metering program. The goal of net metering is to offset all or part of the customer's energy use at the customer's metered service account. Systems should not be sized so large that energy produced by the renewable generator would be expected to exceed 115 percent of the customer’s annual kWh consumption.
For FPL’s complete guidelines, please see the Interconnection Agreement for the appropriate tier:
- Customer-owned renewable generation shall include a utility-interactive inverter, or other device certified pursuant to FPL’s net-metering agreement, that performs the function of automatically isolating the customer-owned generation equipment from the energy grid in the event of a grid outage. This requirement is necessary to prevent dangerous back feed, which can endanger restoration personnel who may be working to restore the grid.
- Note: A net-metering customer may operate renewable generation during a grid outage if the customer’s system is installed with appropriate equipment (e.g. specialized inverter or battery system).
- A customer may choose to install and operate their renewable generation fully off-grid, however, grid interconnection is required if the customer wishes to participate in net metering.
- If a customer’s system does not utilize a U.L. 1741 listed inverter to feed power to FPL, it must have a manual, visual load break disconnect switch (knife blade or fused type). The disconnect switch should only disengage the renewable source, not all of the customer’s electrical service. It should be mounted separate but adjacent to the meter. It is important that the switch be easily accessible by FPL personnel (it should not be locked in a meter room), and that it is capable of being secured in an open position with a padlock.
- The switch should be nearby and readily accessible from the meter location. A sign noting the location of the disconnect switch should be installed at the meter to enable FPL personnel to easily locate the disconnect switch in the event of an emergency. The disconnect switch should also have a warning sign indicating that both sides of the switch may be energized. Please contact FPL for approval of a remote switch location and the verbiage or the location of the sign prior to the final design.
- The gross power rating or the alternating current (AC) rating for the system is the array direct current (DC) rating multiplied by 0.85. The AC rating determines the tier that the system falls under for agreement purposes. There are three tiers by system size; tier 1 is 10 kW and below, tier 2 is above 10 kW up to 100 kW, and tier 3 is above 100 kW up to 2,000 kW (2 megawatts).
- The customer’s system must be connected on the load side of the main line disconnect switch. Interconnections with the utility transformer or in the meter can are not permitted.
- Customer generation is limited to 90 percent of the FPL service capacity. FPL will upsize facilities for customer generation at the customer’s expense. FPL will not increase the size of the distribution equipment greater than required for a renewable energy system designed to offset all of the customer's annual energy use.
- Systems larger than 50 kW AC are required to have three phase inverters.
- The customer on the account must complete an application, interconnect agreement, obtain a building permit, and for Tier 2 and 3, obtain proof of insurance and pay an application fee.
- Once construction is complete, a customer should provide a copy of the approved permit or a screen print from the local authority’s website indicating the permit has been approved and that includes the following:
- Electrical and mechanical inspection signed off / approved by the local inspector
- Description of work - (e.g. solar, solar panels, PV, wind turbine, etc.)
- Address of where the system was installed
- Permit number
- Building department name
- Operation of the renewable generation system, except for testing and inspection, prior to the installation of a new bi-directional meter is strictly prohibited. Operating your renewable system without the bi-directional meter can result in an inaccurate meter reading, causing your electric bill to increase.
- Renewable generation systems incorporating battery storage must have a DC-coupled inverter. Exceptions may be made for Tier 3 systems but will require an interconnection study.