Which export tariff and why?

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Bob Smith

Well-known member
Jul 13, 2022
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Hi everyone

Note sure if this is a good idea. We'll see.
I could not find on the forum a thread that discuss the pros and cons of the various export tariffs available and why should you use one rather than another.

I will start with what I know/assume and I am sure you'll be able to add to it and even prove my assumptions wrong.

I am talking about the current tariffs available and not the old one when the FiT was available with the so called "assumed 50% export"

1) Export but do nothing:
I know someone who got solar panels in April and wanted to wait a bit before selling to the grid. At the moment he exports to the grid but get nothing in return.
Pro: No registration
Con: Loss of true passive income

2) Octopus Go/Economy 7:

Fixed import tariff at slightly above than normal except during some hours, usually 00:00 to 4:30am where the electricity is 7.5p/kWh
Pros: You get cheaper electricity off peak. Useful to run devices that can run at night and consume and of course to charge the batteries during the off peak time if they are a bit flat and you know it will not be sunny the following day.
Cons: You do not sell electricity to the grid. You need to plan when to charge the batteries at night. It would be a shame you charge them for 4 hours and the following day is a very sunny day

3) SEG
You sell your exported electricity at around a fixed price of 7.5kWh regardless of when you export. You still need to be on a tariff to import
Pros: You get some money for your exported electricity
Cons: You still import at a much higher rate than you export.

4) Agile
The import and export tariffs depends on the demand and prices are determined 30min ahead and changes every 30min. Sometimes the export tariff is higher than the import tariff
Pros: You can sell your electricity at a higher price than you import
Cons: You need a device that will automate the process and decide if your priority is to store electricity as much as possible if you have batteries, or sell as much as possible at always the highest price. You cannot benefit of the Economie 7. Therefore at night you pay the wholesale price at a time

How to choose which one to go for:
Obviously 1) is not to be chosen. With or without battery if you export you should get paid. Bar.

Where I am still to learn more is this exact point how to decide on which tariff. Of course it will depend on your strategy

Strategy 1) Store as much as possible (add batteries if you fill you are still exporting too much) and therefore export as little as possible.
For this strategy there will be situation where you still need to import electricity. In that case, if you import more than you export. I think the Economy 7 is best suited with SEG

Strategy 2) Export as much as possible (either all excess because you do not have batteries, or a compromise between your storage need and trying to export as much as possible when the export tariff is higher than the import tariff)
I think in this case Agile is the most suited if the equipment is smart enough to always balance the needs to store enough, always sell when the export price is higher than the import price, and be able to charge when required the batteries from the grid at a cheaper price

Strategy 3) I cannot think of something else.

I appreciate some of you have generator and all sort of other generation devices but I think the above still apply. How to deal with any excess of electricity.

I hope this new discussion will bring clarity to any newcomers including myself.
Thank you for your time and contribution. Please try to stay with the topic :)
Apr 11, 2022
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I am waiting for my first bill to show my exported energy. Octopus have confirmed I started on Export Agile on 13/07/22 and I can see the export on the Octopus website/app, but they are unable to access it to generate a bill at the moment.
I am assured the export data is not lost and to be patient. I also have a Hildebrand Glowstick which retains the import/export data
My meter is a SMETS1 enrolled on the DCC, which may be a part of the problem (they say).
I am on the Flexible Octopus tariff for import and am being billed for that, so they can obviously read the import - pity about the export!

I will post here once I get a bill and clear up what is happening with the meter.
Nov 28, 2009
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My strategy. USE as much as you possibly can. Simple by shifting the big appliances (washing machine, dishwasher, tumble dryer etc) to the middle of the day. And divert any unused excess to your immersion heater to heat hot water using one of the many PV diverter units.

Using this strategy in nearly 4 years, I have exported only 330kWh. Had i been paid the SEG at 7.5p I would have been paid a total of £24.75 Not worth the paperwork and I would have had to pay a LOT more than that to use an MCS installer to even allow me to claim that pittance of a payment.
Apr 11, 2022
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Ok, I'm on the Flexible Octopus Tariff for Import and the Agile Outgoing Octopus tariff for Export and I have now been paid for my exported energy from 14/07 through 06/08.
I exported 299.87 kWh and was paid £71.07.
That works out at 23.7p/kWh average for the period.
(I have not yet received an itemised bill showing the 30 minute export slots and their related export rates although I believe that will be on the next bill).
The Flexible Octopus Tariff for Import is 29.48p/kWh plus 41.39p/day standing charge. For the same period I imported 24kWh and was charged £34.14.
So for that period at least, I have made a profit.
Prior to my install in June I had based my payback period on exporting at various rates up to a max of 7.5p/kWh and importing at various rates up to the coming October increased rate that I estimated at 38.5p/kWh.
I was unaware of the possibility of the being on a standard rate import tariff like the Octopus Flexible, yet also on a variable outgoing tariff like Octopus Agile.
I had assumed that since there is a variable Agile import rate (usually around 35p/kWh) you would have to pay that for import in order to benefit from the high export rates - apparently not!
I'm still looking for the catch, while not wanting to find one!:unsure:
Apr 11, 2022
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Just received the August bill from Octopus - attached is a sample page showing the export rebate for that day in 30minute increments based on the smart meter readings. There is a similar page for every day covered by the bill.


  • export rebate.jpg
    export rebate.jpg
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truffle pig

Mar 1, 2022
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I guess a lot will depend on the how much you will generate vs your average consumption / how much you will use vs how much you will export. What size system have you got?
Apr 11, 2022
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Yes - as you said.
System is 16 x 365 JASolar panels for a 5.84kWp output, 2 x Pylontech US3000c batteries with 6.75kWh usable storage and a 6kW Solis hybrid inverter.
I've attached the daily export/import data for the billed period.
I realise it will be completely different in the winter months, so it's all about saving as much as I can now to offset the winter usage.Octopus export and import.JPG