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Getting electricity from solar panels

Verified 23 juillet 2019 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

It is possible to obtain electricity from solar panels (or photovoltaic panels) installed on the roof. The electricity obtained may be used for your personal use or sold, in whole or in part, to an electricity supplier. This choice will depend in particular on the technical and administrative obligations to be respected.

To use it and sell the surplus

Generating electricity from solar radiation requires a specific device.

In practice, your it consists of the following elements:

  • Multiple photovoltaic panels
    These panels capture solar energy and turn it into electricity. They can be attached to your original roof (non-integrated equipment) or integrated in place of the original roof (built-in equipment).
  • One or more inverters
    The inverter is a small case mounted on a wall close to the photovoltaic panels. It converts the direct current obtained into alternating current identical to that of the public electricity network and usable at home.

In order to be able to sell the surplus electricity obtained (you use part of it for your needs), your equipment must be connected to the public electricity network.

An advisor Make can help you define your project [application/pdf - 656.0 KB] and estimate the cost and profitability ..

Installation costs

The price of equipment (photovoltaic panels and inverters) and their installation varies. It shall in particular:

  • the materials used,
  • the method of installation (integrated or simply installed panels),
  • and the installer you are using.

The connection and commissioning of your equipment to the public electricity network shall be carried out by the system operator (Enedis or ELD). These services are not free. Costs vary depending on the characteristics of your equipment.

Investment premium

By deciding to sell the surplus of your electricity and using an RGE installer, you can benefit from the investment premium..

The amount of the premium depends on the power of your equipment.

The premium is degressive, its payment is made over the first 5 years of operation of your equipment.

Investment premium in euro per kWc

Power of equipment

Investment premium amount

Less than or equal to 3 kWc

€390/kWc

Between 3 and 9 kWc

€290/kWc

Between 9 and 36 kWc

€190/kWc

Between 36 and 100 kWc

€90/kWc

  FYI : there are local aids. Ask your local town hall, department or region.

Operating costs

Once the panels are installed:

  • you have the obligation to subscribe to liability insurance for your photovoltaic equipment. To do this, you can request the modification of your contract home insurance.. Your contribution amount will be reassessed.
  • you can purchase property damage insurance for your equipment.
  • for the use of the public electricity network as a supplier of electricity, a tax (the Turpe) ) is billed to you each year.
  • the inverter must be changed regularly, approximately every 10 years.

  FYI : do not neglect the periodic maintenance of the panels because, subject to the weather, their materials gradually degrade.

Revenue from the sale of electricity

The surplus electricity is sold in purchase obligation with a regulated tariff, provided that RGE installer..

  FYI : For equipment with a power of less than 3 kWc, the electricity obtained may be transferred free of charge.

Income from the sale of surplus electricity is exempt from tax if your equipment meets the following 3 conditions:

  • it has a power not exceeding 3 kilowatts peak,
  • and connected to the public network in not more than 2 points,
  • and it is not used for the exercise of a professional activity.

If any of the 3 conditions are not met, the income from the sale of your electricity is taxable and must be included in your tax return, as industrial and commercial benefits (BIC)..

For a detached house

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must:

  • for an existing building: apply prior authorization to your town hall,
  • for a new construction: integrate photovoltaic panels into your building permit file.

For condominium accommodation

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must obtain the permission of the other co-owners gathered at a general meeting.

In 1to time, you have to get permission from the absolute majority of all co-owners. We're talking about majority of section 25..

If an absolute majority is not obtained, a further vote may be taken by the simple majority (said) majority of section 24, i.e. the majority of co-owners present or represented):

  • immediately, if the project received at least one third of the votes of all the co-owners,
  • within 3 months, if one third of the votes have not been received.

Once the authorization is obtained, it is at condominium trustee request prior authorization at the town hall.

  FYI : contact your town hall to find out if there are specific rules in force in your municipality (example: roof color).

To be entitled to public aid (purchase obligation, investment premium), you must use an RGE qualified installer.

For a list of RGE qualified installers:

Find an RGE professional or an architect

Environment and Energy Management Agency (Ademe)

You must address the public electricity system operator in your municipality (Enedis or ELD), a request for connecting your photovoltaic equipment ..

Enedis: apply for connection to the public electricity network

ENEDIS (ex-ERDF)

You can make the connection request yourself or entrust it to a proxy (for example, photovoltaic panel installer).

The Network Manager shall have:

  • 10 days to send you a notice of delay for obtaining a connection proposal (PDR.), as well as your network access and operating contract number (CAE),
  • 1 to 3 months to contact the PDR. and the CAE.

You then have 3 months to send:

  • accepted RDP,
  • the signed EAC,
  • and the rules of procedure.

The Network Manager will connect and put your equipment into service.

Electricité de France (EDF OA), or local distribution undertaking (LDU), has the obligation to buy your electricity:

The application for a contract of obligation to purchase shall be made at the same time as the application for connection to the public electricity network.

The term of the contract is 20 years, not renewable. It applies from the date of putting your equipment into service (effective connection to the network).

The purchase price for the electricity produced is set per quarter.

The rate that applies to your contract is the rate in effect on the date of your equipment connection request.

You then send your invoice each year to the anniversary date of the contract.

Use it all

Generating electricity from solar radiation requires a specific device.

In practice, it includes:

  • several photovoltaic panels. These panels capture solar energy and turn it into electricity. They can be attached to your original roof (non-integrated equipment) or integrated in place of the original roof (built-in equipment). In certain geographical areas, they can also be installed on a façade or in a garden.
  • one or more inverters. The inverter is a small enclosure mounted on a wall as close as possible to the photovoltaic modules. It allows you to convert the direct current obtained into an alternating current usable at home.
  • from batteries [application/pdf - 656.0 KB] , if you want to be able to store the electricity obtained.
  • a "bridging" device, possibly, because your equipment must be sized so that the electricity obtained never exceeds your needs.

An advisor Make can help you define your project [application/pdf - 656.0 KB] and estimate its profitability (cost and benefits).

Installation costs

The price of equipment (photovoltaic panels and inverters) and their installation varies. It shall in particular:

  • the materials used,
  • the method of installation (integrated or simply installed panels),
  • and the installer you are using.

  FYI : some local authorities offer financial support for the installation of photovoltaic equipment.

Operating costs

Once the panels are installed:

  • you have the obligation to subscribe to liability insurance for your photovoltaic equipment. To do this, you can request the modification of your contract home insurance.. Your contribution amount will be reassessed.
  • you can purchase property damage insurance for your equipment.
  • the inverter must be changed regularly, approximately every 10 years.

  FYI : do not neglect the periodic maintenance of the panels because, subject to the weather, their materials gradually degrade.

For a list of installers , you can contact an advisor Make ::

For a list of RGE qualified installers:

Find an RGE professional or an architect

Environment and Energy Management Agency (Ademe)

For a detached house

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must:

  • for an existing building: apply prior authorization to your town hall,
  • for a new construction: integrate photovoltaic panels into your building permit file.

For condominium accommodation

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must obtain the permission of the other co-owners gathered at a general meeting.

In 1to time, you have to get permission from the absolute majority of all co-owners. We're talking about majority of section 25..

If an absolute majority is not obtained, a further vote may be taken by the simple majority (said) majority of section 24, i.e. the majority of co-owners present or represented):

  • immediately, if the project received at least one third of the votes of all the co-owners,
  • within 3 months, if one third of the votes have not been received.

Once the authorization is obtained, it is at condominium trustee request prior authorization at the town hall.

  FYI : contact your town hall to find out if there are specific rules in force in your municipality (example: roof color).

You must sign self-consumption convention without injection (CACSI) with the public electricity system operator present in your municipality:

  • Enedis in most cases,
  • or ELD

Your equipment will be placed in service after the network manager receives your signed agreement.

Convention on self-consumption without injection for a power-generating plant

ENEDIS (ex-ERDF)

To sell

Generating electricity from solar radiation requires a specific device.

In practice, it includes:

  • several photovoltaic panels. These panels capture solar energy and turn it into electricity. They can be attached to your original roof (non-integrated equipment) or integrated in place of the original roof (built-in equipment).
  • one or more inverters. The inverter is a small enclosure mounted on a wall as close as possible to the photovoltaic modules. It converts the direct current obtained into the same alternating current as that of the public electricity network.

In order to sell the electricity obtained, your device must be connected to the public electricity network. In total, 2 communicating counters must be installed in your home.

An advisor Make can help you define your project [application/pdf - 656.0 KB] and assess their profitability (cost and benefits

Installation costs

The price of equipment (photovoltaic panels and inverters) and their installation varies. It shall in particular:

  • the materials used,
  • the method of installation (integrated or simply installed panels),
  • and the installer you are using.

The connection and putting into service of your device to the public electricity network shall be carried out by the system operator (Enedis or ELD).

These services are not free. Their cost varies depending on the characteristics of your equipment.

Operating costs

Once the panels are installed:

  • you have the obligation to subscribe to liability insurance for your photovoltaic equipment. To do this, you can request the modification of your contract home insurance.. Your contribution amount will be reassessed.
  • you can purchase property damage insurance for your equipment.
  • for the use of the public electricity network as a supplier of electricity, a tax (the Turp) is billed to you each year.
  • the inverter must be changed regularly, approximately every 10 years.

  FYI : do not neglect the periodic maintenance of the panels because, subject to the weather, their materials gradually degrade.

Revenue from the sale of electricity

The electricity obtained is sold in purchase obligation with a regulated tariff, provided that RGE installer..

If the power of your equipment is greater than 3kWc, the income from the sale of your electricity is taxable and must appear on your tax return, as industrial and commercial benefits (BIC)..

  FYI : For equipment with a power of less than 3 kWc, the electricity obtained may be transferred free of charge.

For a detached house

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must:

  • for an existing building: apply prior authorization to your town hall,
  • for a new construction: integrate photovoltaic panels into your building permit file.

For condominium accommodation

Before installing photovoltaic panels, you must obtain the permission of the other co-owners gathered at a general meeting.

In 1to time, you have to get permission from the absolute majority of all co-owners. We're talking about majority of section 25..

If an absolute majority is not obtained, a further vote may be taken by the simple majority (said) majority of section 24, i.e. the majority of co-owners present or represented):

  • immediately, if the project received at least one third of the votes of all the co-owners,
  • within 3 months, if one third of the votes have not been received.

Once the authorization is obtained, it is at condominium trustee request prior authorization at the town hall.

  FYI : contact your town hall to find out if there are specific rules in force in your municipality (example: roof color).

To be entitled to public aid (purchase obligation), you must use an RGE qualified installer.

For a list of RGE qualified installers:

Find an RGE professional or an architect

Environment and Energy Management Agency (Ademe)

You must address the public electricity system operator in your municipality (Enedis or ELD), a request for connecting your photovoltaic equipment ..

Enedis: apply for connection to the public electricity network

ENEDIS (ex-ERDF)

You can choose to make the connection request:

  • yourself,
  • or to entrust it to an authorized representative (for example, photovoltaic panel installer).

The Network Manager shall have:

  • 10 days to send you a notice of delay for obtaining a connection proposal (PDR.), as well as your network access and operating contract number (CAE),
  • 1 to 3 months to contact the PDR. and the CAE.

You then have 3 months to send:

  • accepted RDP,
  • the signed EAC,
  • and the rules of procedure.

The Network Manager will connect and put your equipment into service.

Electricité de France (EDF OA), or local distribution undertaking (LDU), has the obligation to buy your electricity:

The application for a contract of obligation to purchase shall be made at the same time as the application for connection to the public electricity network.

The term of the contract is 20 years, not renewable. It applies from the date of putting your equipment into service (effective connection to the network).

The purchase price for the electricity produced is set per quarter.

The rate that applies to your contract is the rate in effect on the date of your equipment connection request.

You then send your invoice each year to the anniversary date of the contract.