Your solar panels will continue to produce power as long as it's daytime. Whether sun, rain, windy, or even a hurricane - as long as the grid has power your solar panels will continue to generate electricity, it will just be at a diminished rate in comparison to a sunny day.
Will my solar work when the grid goes down?
Unless you have a backup generator, or backup energy storage such as batteries, your solar will remain offline with the grid. This is for the safety of the line workers as we do not want to send electricity back into a dead grid.
What can batteries do for me?
If you want or need your power on during a blackout, having energy storage is the way to go. Make sure that your battery system is sized properly to handle the loads you want to run. From just a few circuits to the whole home, batteries and generators can keep both you and your solar online longer.
How does Net Metering work?
Net metering is the process by which you negotiate your electrical buying and selling with the utility company. Using new meter technology, the utility company will monitor how much electricity you buy from them, as well as how much electricity you generate and sell back to the grid. They will pay you for excess solar power that is generated and sent back (sometimes it's the retail price you pay for electricity and sometimes it's a wholesale rate), but this is how you make money on excess solar generation.
Will my utility bill be 0?
This is always our goal, but the realistic answer is no. The utility company will always charge you for having a meter and for other fees/taxes.
Where is the best place on my home for solar?
The most optimal location for solar is on any south facing roof. We will always design your home solar system with this in mind. Some HOA’s and AHJ's do not always allow for this to occur. In these cases, we will utilize the available roof space.
Why am I still seeing electric charges on my utility bill?
When determining your electrical needs from solar, we look at how much energy you consume in a year. This number is how we evaluate what size solar system you will need. Because of the way these calculations are done, there are some months where you will have a small bill. But there will be other months where you will over produce and send excess back to the grid. These are meant to balance each other out throughout the year.
What if I have trees around my house, but the sun hits my roof all day?
Our rule of thumb is that trees and other tall obstructions should be twice as far from the home as they are tall. This ensures that in the winter, when the sun is sitting lower and casting longer shadows, your solar system will not be affected.
How often should I clean my system?
A good cleaning with the hose 1 - 2 times a year is all they require. If you notice some pollen, pine needles or leaves starting to accumulate, it's about that time. Most manufacturers recommend a 2 - 1 ratio of vinegar and water, but water out of the hose is also fine.
My HOA does not allow solar, what can I do?
Now is the time to act. Go to your local board meetings and press them on the issue. Or, join the board and press the issue then. Solar is a great investment not only for homeowners, but for the environment. We need people like you to help lessen our dependence on non-renewable energy.
What are the steps once I sign on to go solar?
These are the steps: A site visit, HOA submittal/approval (if applicable), Interconnection Application with the utility, Permit through the county, Final inspection, Utility inspection, and Approval to Energize. Most can be done in conjunction with each other.
Will installing solar panels damage my roof?
If anything, solar panels will protect your roof from damage and may even keep your home cooler. Check out all the different solar mounting options you can choose from here. Each method aims to do as little damage to your roof as possible.
How will I know how much electricity my solar system is producing?
We offer production monitoring through our inverters. This allows you to track your solar production each day.
I’m not saving any money between my loan payments and my remaining power bill. Why?
Solar is an investment. The average payback time for residential solar is around 9 -12 years. After that time, you will start making your money back. Yes, the loan is meant to replace what you used to pay in electric cost (sometimes it can be more or less) but the real savings come when you pay off your system and are only left with a very low electric bill. Remember, utility companies escalate their rates 4% - 6% every year. That means your solar is offsetting higher costing energy every year.
Who do I contact with questions regarding my solar production?
Call our office number at 843-469-5777 and select the Service Department option.
Does my homeowner’s insurance cover my solar energy system?
Most home insurance companies will insure your solar energy system. In many cases, it shouldn’t impact your premium, as it actually protects that portion of your roof from the elements and extends the life of your roof. However, some insurance companies may charge a few extra dollars per month. It is important to contact your insurance company before buying a solar system to make sure they will cover your system.
How long will solar installation take?
Depending on the size of your system, it can take less than a day or up to 2-3 days for very large systems. The SELSCO provides a complete turn-key solution that includes interconnection, permitting, HOA approval, ensuring everything is up to code, etc. The SELSCO solar power experts will walk you through the process from start to finish.
How do I claim the investment tax credit?
You claim the investment tax credit for solar when you file your yearly federal tax return. Remember to let your accountant know you’ve gone solar in the past year.
What warranties does my system carry?
Most Tier 1 solar panel manufacturers provide warranties for 25 years. Microinverters come with 25 year warranties out of the box. String and string/power optimizer inverters typically carry 10-12 year warranties that can be extended for up to 25 years. With this in mind, it is important to ensure that you select components from companies that will be around to service your system in the future. It is also important that your system is installed and maintained properly to ensure compliance with warranties.
What is an interconnection switch?
This is the switch that separates the solar panel system from the electric grid. It cannot be activated until your local utility company provides authorization to the contractor that the electric meter is set up for net metering.
How many solar panels do I need for an electric solar power system?
The size of the photovoltaic system is correlated to your home’s energy-use needs, available space for a system, and overall costs for the system components and installation.
What happens when I need to replace my roof? Do all the solar panels need to come down?
When re-roofing, the solar panels will have to come down. Depending on the roof set up, the actual mounts may be able to stay in place while re-roofing, unless boards and/or joists have to be replaced as well. For this reason, if your roof is within the last third of its lifespan, we recommend you either wait to get solar panels or go ahead and replace the roof early.
Does a solar panel need to be on my roof?
For most home installations, the roof is the optimum placement for solar panels, particularly when unobstructed by trees or other shade-producing structures and facing toward the south. If the homeowner has adequate yard space and/or many panels to be installed, The SELSCO can review the option of ground mounting.
How much does it cost?
The cost depends on the number of panels installed and whether your site is suitable for rooftop solar or ground-mounted solar. Ground-mounted systems typically cost more. On average, rooftop solar panels cost between $25,000 – $45,000 before tax incentives.
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