Frequently Asked Questions About Solar Panels

Solar Panels

Solar Panels

Most homeowners have many questions surrounding how solar panels work and why they should consider them. Pima Solar, a reputable solar equipment supplier, and installer can answer all your questions. If you plan to install a solar energy system in your home, then this list of frequently asked questions will come in handy. 

How Much Will It Cost To Go Solar?

The costs of going solar vary widely because of the various systems, models., manufacturers, and suppliers in the market. If you want to have the best estimate of how much it will cost to go solar, it is advisable to use an online solar cost calculator. It will consider your power usage data and location to generate a reliable approximate. 

A self-installed grid-tied system can cost as low as $10,000. If you hire a local installer for your grid-tied system, it could cost a minimum of $15,000. National installers are the most expensive, and many do not charge below $20,000. 

How Long Will My Solar Systems Last?

Solar systems have a standard 25-year warranty, which is a pretty good indicator of their typical lifespan. With proper installation, use, and maintenance, most parts of your solar system are expected to last at least ten years. 

Will A Solar System Increase My Property Value? 

Studies have shown that installing a solar system increases a home’s value more significantly compared to a kitchen remodel. Homeowners can reap multiple benefits from installing a solar system, e.g., increased federal and state tax incentives, lower electricity bills, and increased property value.  

Will A Solar System Protect Me From Power Outages?

Grid-tied solar systems will not exempt you from power outages because this would pose a danger to utility repair staff. Only off-grid and grid-tied with energy storage systems will continue supplying electricity to your home in the event of an outage. 

What Is The Difference Between Off-Grid, Grid-Tied With Energy Storage And Grid-Tied Solar Systems?

Grid-tied, off-grid, and grid-tied with energy storage are the three main types of commercially available solar system models. Batteries accompany an off-grid solar system to store the generated energy for future use. It is appropriate if you don’t have access to power lines or do not connect to them. The off-grid system is more expensive than the other model. 

A grid-tied solar system connects to the public utility grid because the public utility grid will store all the energy generated by your solar panels and eliminate the need to purchase expensive batteries. A grid-tied solar system with energy storage is connected to the public grid and has some batteries to store backup power in case of a regional outage. 

What Are The Components Of A Solar Panel Unit?

To find a complete list of parts for a solar system, it is best to check the manufacturer’s website. The main components of grid-tied solar systems are solar panels (that capture energy), an inverter (to convert the captured energy into electricity), and racking, which is the foundation that your solar system will be mounted on. 

When you purchase a battery-based system, it will contain more than the grid-tied system. It will also include batteries to store the charge generated by the panels and a charge controller that controls the rate batteries charge from panels. Minor components that manufacturers need include wires and meters. 

What Is Net Metering?

Net metering is a system utility companies use to credit solar energy system owners for the electricity they supply to the public grid. The system allows you to only pay for the electricity you use that is not generated by your system. Your net metering policy will outline the rates charged or credited for the electricity you take out or send into the grid. Net metering policies differ in each state. 

Can I Install Solar Panels Myself?

Depending on your level of expertise with tools and installation, you may be able to install your solar panels without professional help. Many handy homeowners opt to install their own system to save on the installation markup charged by the solar equipment company. It is always advisable to rely on professional installation whenever possible because it guarantees the quality and durability of work done. 

If you attempt the installation yourself, ensure that you conduct proper research before getting started. Consider online solar installation classes or tutorials that can guide you by offering a working timeline, do’s, and don’ts. You can do the installations that you feel confident performing (e.g., installing racking rails and panels on the roof) and then bring in a professional finish up (e.g., wiring up the electrical system). 

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