SEG – Smart Export Guarantee

SEG was set up in January 2020 by Ofgem and is designed to ensure that the customer gets paid for the electricity they export to the grid. At first when it was announced the main electricity suppliers offered pitiful rates of 0.5 - 1.5p per kWh. Since then, rates from some are as high as 15p per kWh, but some tariffs come with higher grid buy in rates to compensate the suppliers. It’s criminal to charge a rate of 35p per kWh to buy electricity from the grid, but only offer 3p to the customer to buy it back from their solar export. The electricity supplier and the grid do absolutely no work to obtain it.


This diagram shows how the Smart Export Guarantee works.

Smart meters and meters:

Unless the customer has a smart meter then there is no way of knowing the exact generation and therefore cannot claim the SEG. The customer will usually get a smart meter installed by the supplier when submitting the application for SEG.

It’s important that the customer is advised that Solartherm UK do not apply on their behalf but are sent the application and have the details to hand for us to do so. This is because bank and personal details are required. Depending on how old the customers meter is will depend on what will happen, if it's a digital meter then it will only measure import and any export will be ignored. If it's an old dial meter, then the export will turn the meter backwards resulting in a cost deduction (which the energy companies don’t really like but until a meter change has been done are powerless to stop)

When it comes to excess generation it is worth looking at how much export electricity there is going to be, as installing a home energy storage system would allow the excess to be stored during the day and discharged early evening. Why sell at even 15p per kWh when you can store for free and discharge into your home saving you from buying it back at rates of 30p or more?

It is also possible on larger systems where the grid usage is low by day to still export to the grid once the battery is full.

We have covered before the frustrating delays with the DNO’s issuing the permission for Solartherm UK customers to connect to the grid. Electricity suppliers are cashing in on these delays by saying the customer can not apply for SEG until the DNO permission is accepted. Although Solartherm UK work quickly in submitting the DNO application the delays do result in the loss of any payments whilst the customer waits for the DNO acceptance and subsequent agreement of the application for SEG.

For a customer with a battery the losses are usually minimal, for a customer still awaiting stock to arrive and installation of a planned battery this is a further frustration but one we cannot do much about whilst demand for stock continues at four times the rate manufacturers can build stock.


More detailed information can be found here:

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