Solar panels consist of multiple silicon cells which capture the sun’s rays and generate Direct Current (DC) electricity. The panels are connected to an inverter that “inverts” the power from DC electricity to Alternating Current (AC) electricity. If you’re located in the U.S., your home, business, and utility grid runs on AC power, so an inverter is required in order to utilize power generated by a solar panel. Modern inverters also provide safety measures, as well as monitoring system information and generation performance.
Solar modules are very resilient to storms that may include heavy rains, high winds, and hail. Panel manufacturers stress test modules to ensure they withstand hail sizes up to 1 inch and winds up to 140 MPH. Since solar panels are insured against storm damage, they provide an added benefit of protecting your roof or vehicles from the elements.
Our equipment and workmanship come with strong warranties to ensure your solar panel system performs at its best.
It is the sun’s UV rays, not sunlight, that are captured by solar panels to generate power. Much like how your body can still tan on a cloudy day, a percentage of UV rays can still pass through stormy atmospheres allowing solar panels to continue producing energy, albeit at a reduced efficiency.
A number of factors must be taken into consideration to determine how much power a solar panel system will produce. Attention is placed on these details:
Solar panels require UV rays to generate energy. Since solar panels aren’t receiving UV rays at night, no power is generated.
No, adding a solar panel system does not disconnect you from the utility grid, nor do we recommend it. Solar panels only generate power during the daytime, so if you wish to binge watch your favorite show on Netflix at night before you go to bed, energy from your local utility will be needed.
In order to take your home off-grid with solar, you must pair it with a battery storage solution. The solar panel system needs to be sized to produce enough energy for both day and night consumption, and the battery system should be large enough to dispatch all of your power while the sun is down.
While going “off-grid” might seem appealing, it can very expensive. However, batteries will make financial sense in utility markets where both delivery and energy charges are costly, like in California or Colorado.
The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) provided by the federal government allows a dollar-for-dollar credit toward a business’s tax liability. In 2020, U.S. Congress extended the 26% tax credit through 2022, stepping down to 22% in 2023, then dropping again to 10% in 2024.
Net Metering is this: there may be moments during the day or year where your solar system generates more power than your home is presently consuming. This excess energy is delivered to the utility grid and your utility “credits” you for every kWh overproduced. Your credits can then be used when ever your system isn’t generating enough power to produce what you consume, like at night or during the winter.
However, not all Net Metering policies are the same. For example, there are some utility policies where you may only be credited at an “Avoided Cost Rate”, often around 2-3 cents/kWh. This may directly impact your savings when you’re paying the utility 9-10 cents/kWh and expecting to be compensated at the same rate, but only receiving a fraction in return.
A State Tax Credit is much like the Federal ITC, but not every state provides one and the percentage value will vary.
Cash rebates are sometimes offered by your state, municipality, utility company, or other organization that wants to promote solar energy. Rebates help reduce your total system costs, but usually have limited availability and end once a certain amount of solar has been installed. Whenever cash rebates are offered, it is in your best interest to act quickly to ensure those lucrative incentives are captured.
Performance-Based Incentives (PBIs), offered in some states or utilities, pay solar energy system owners a per kilowatt-hour credit for the electricity that their systems produce. Certain PBI programs require that you install equipment manufactured in your state to qualify. PBIs don’t have to be sold through a market like SRECs, and incentive rates are determined when the system is installed and/or how much solar capacity is installed. PBIs may replace or exist alongside net metering policies.
Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) are often a part of a larger Renewable Portfolio Standards enacted by some state legislations. The policies tell utilities to generate a certain percentage of their electricity from solar power by a specific time.
If you live in one of these states, your system will generate SRECs for the amount of electricity produced by your system(s). Utilities will buy your SRECs so they may count your produced solar energy toward meeting their requirements. Selling your SRECs can result in hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars more per year in income, depending on the SREC market in your state.
You can visit: https://programs.dsireusa.org/system/program/maps and filter the technology to show “Solar Photovoltaics”, then choose your state.