SOLAR FAQs

Why should I go solar?
1. What are the financial benefits of solar energy?
When you install a solar energy system on your property, you save money on your electricity bills and protect yourself against rising electricity rates in the future. How much you can save depends on the utility rates and solar policies in your area, but going solar is a smart investment regardless of where you live.

2. What is net metering?
Net metering is the system that utilities use to credit solar energy system owners for the electricity produced by their solar panels. With net metering, you only pay for the electricity that you use beyond what your solar panels can generate. 

3. How does solar impact my property values?
Studies have shown that homes with solar energy systems sell for more than homes without them. However, your property value will only increase if you own, rather than lease, your solar panel system. In most parts of the country, going solar will actually increase your property value more than a kitchen renovation.

How do solar panels work for my home?
4. How do solar photovoltaic (PV) panels work?
Solar panels absorb the sun's energy throughout the day and convert it into direct current (DC) electricity. Most homes and businesses run on alternating current (AC) electricity, so the DC electricity is then passed through an inverter to convert it to usable AC electricity. At that point, you either use the electricity in your house or send it back to the electric grid.

5. Do my solar panels produce power when the sun isn’t shining?
The amount of power your solar energy system can generate is dependent on sunlight. As a result, your solar panels will produce slightly less energy when the weather is cloudy, and no energy at night. However, because of high electricity costs and financial incentives, solar is a smart decision even if you live in a cloudy city.

6. What happens if there is snow on solar panels?
Solar panels convert sunshine into power, so if your panels are covered in snow they can’t produce electricity. Snow load is calculated for your home during the Roof Evaluation and if additional support and reinforcement is necessary it will be added to your install plan. Solar panels are always tilted at an angle (even if it's slight) the snow will slide off as the glass panels warm up. ** Be aware of your drop zone, if you have patio furniture in that 'drop zone' where the snow will shed off the roof it could damage anything in that 'drop zone' so it's best to plan ahead when there is impending snow.

7. Will I still receive an electric bill if I have solar panels?
Even if your solar energy system includes battery storage, you will still receive a monthly bill from your utility for at least your Customer Fee with them. However, you can dramatically reduce your bill, or even cut the amount you owe to $0 for kW usage, with a solar panel system that matches your energy use.

8. Do solar panels work in a blackout?
Your solar panel system will shut off in the event of a blackout. This is to prevent emergency responders and electricity utility repair-people from being injured by your panels sending power back to the grid. If you opt to add solar storage to your system, you will have back up power for as long as the battery storage lasts, then it would recharge the next day. (When we are adding Solar Storage to your system we will determine which breakers/appliances are your 'essential' things that will run through the Solar Storage in the event of a blackout.

9. How much will solar panel maintenance cost?
Solar panel systems are made of durable tempered glass and require little to no maintenance for the 25 to 35 years that they will generate power. In most cases, you don’t even need to clean your solar panels regularly. If something does happen, the equipment warranties kicks in under the 25 year warranty.

What are my solar financing options?
10. What solar energy rebates and incentives are available?
Solar rebates and incentives vary depending on where you live. The most significant is the 26 percent federal investment tax credit (ITC), which allows you to deduct 26 percent of the cost of your solar energy system from your taxes. SRECs (State Renewable Energy Credits) offer additional tax credits annually based on the system kW size.

Am I ready for solar?

11. Can I afford to go solar?
If you can afford to pay your electricity bill you can afford to go solar. $0-down solar financing options, including both solar loans and solar leases, make it easy for homeowners with good credit (650+ FICO) to start saving on their electricity bills by going solar. 

12. What size solar energy system should I get?
The size of your solar energy system will depend on how much electricity you use on an annual basis, as well as the weather conditions where you live. Our goal is to counter 100% of your electric bill or fill 100% of your solar-viable roof space.

13. Do I need to replace my roof before installing solar?
Solar energy systems can last for 35 to 40 years, and it can be costly to remove and reinstall them if you need to replace your roof (handling fees apply depending on the scope of the project). If your roof needs maintenance in the near term, you should complete it before you finish your solar installation.

14. How long will my solar power system last?
In general, solar panels are very durable and capable of withstanding snow, wind, and hail. The various components of your solar power system will need to be replaced at different times and fall under our 25 year warranty, but your system should continue to generate electricity for 35 to 40 years.

15. What happens if I sell my solar house?
If you own your solar energy system, your solar house will sell at a premium: studies have shown that solar increases property values (on the east coast by $3,500-$3,000 per kW of your system size). However, if you lease your system, that is not the case. You will transfer the lease agreement to the home’s new owner and they will finish out the term of the lease agreement.

16. Should I ask for a solar monitoring system for my solar panels?

You can receive detailed information about how much energy your solar panel system is producing with your solar monitoring system smart phone app or online website. 

17. Do I need to install solar batteries with my solar power system?

Solar power systems that include solar batteries, known as solar-plus-storage, are increasingly popular! Batteries are not necessary for most solar homeowners, but are a great source of back-up in the event of a power outage. Since you are always connected to the grid, your system does not need a battery: excess power goes back into the grid, and you can draw from the grid if you need more electricity than your panels can generate.