Solar energy has gone mainstream.
people still aren’t sure how to go about installing solar panels at home.
“There’s a lot of buzz about roof-top
solar panels throughout the
country, but the details and
regulations are complex.”
Here’s a comprehensive guide to going completely solar at home:
First of all you need to ensure the roof is strong enough to hold the solar panels you plan on installing.
The way your house is positioned is also pretty key.
If the roof is covered in shade throughout most of the day, you might not get enough of sunshine to
power the house.
This will certainly impact the cost-effectiveness of the project.
Before you get started plan the solar panel layout and make sure the roof is built to last.
The panels usually come with a 20 to 25 year warranty, so your roof needs to be strong enough for
at least that long.
If not, look into community solar instead.
Before you even set up a plan for the roof, you need to have an energy audit done to figure out
how much energy your house consumes.
Perhaps there are ways to cut down energy use before you go about using the juice from the sun.
Ask an expert to suggest some simple ways to boost energy efficiency at home and calculate
the returns of this investment.
Type of solar
There are basically two types of solar energy – thermal and photovoltaic.
Usually, thermal is a much better option if you plan on using solar energy mainly for heating.
But if your heating needs are low, photovoltaic is better for overall electricity generation.
Connect to the grid
The details on how to connect to the power grid (via a network of MV cables that feed to local
substations and beyond) depend on where you live.
You’ll need to find out how long it takes to get hooked up and the fees you need to pay.
Some states, like Nevada, have policies in place to compensate homeowners who produce
extra-solar power to feed into the grid.
“Make sure you do your research
and follow these simple steps
before you get started
on your house.”
Finding the best installer
The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) has a registry of
accredited solar installers.
Pick an installer with great credentials and references for your project.
It’s hard to predict what goes wrong in a massive installation, so it’s best to be precautious.
If the panels stop working during the warranty period you don’t want to find out your installer
is no longer able to help.
There’s a lot of buzz about roof-top solar panels throughout the country, but the details and
regulations are complex.
Make sure you do your research and follow these simple steps before you get started on your house.
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