Where To Install Solar Panels
Solar panels can be installed either on the roof or in the ground. When selecting the location to install solar panels, several things must be taken into account. We will address some technical considerations and details that you should pay attention to before choosing where to install your solar panels.
Are You Aware Of The Tax Incentives And Rebates
One of the best benefits youll receive by installing solar are the tax incentives and rebates from local power companies. At Sun Badger, we lay out these incentives as part of the payment plan for your solar panels. The money you save in taxes can go right towards your solar loan and help you pay it off it faster!
Power companies often offer rebates that encourage homeowners to install solar energy systems. Wed be happy to help you research and find more details on what your local power company is doing to make solar energy more affordable. Reach out to us today to get started!
Calculate The Cost For A Roof Replacement
Product warranty – A solar product warranty is your typical manufacturer’s warranty, ensuring coverage for any faulty materials. Most companies will feature product warranties for about 5-10 years and can be extended an additional 5-15 years for a total of 25 years. Solar inverters typically last between 10-12 years and usually need to be replaced at least once.
Power warranty – A power warranty or performance guarantee ensures that your solar panels output a specific amount of energy over their lifetime. It’s normal for panels to degrade over time, failing up to 1% per year. Companies offer linear power warranties to ensure a consistent level of degradation per year. These types of guarantees ensure a consistent level of degradation per year. Some solar companies will feature a stepped warranty, which includes coverage for a flat rate and decreases at different stages of the solar system.
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When Is A Roof Replacement Required
A roof that is in poor shape may have some issues holding up the solar panels and even if it doesnt, do you really want to risk having a roof that probably needs extensive repairs be what holds up your solar panels, which although not as expensive as they once were are still a substantial investment? Besides, if your roof is damaged and needs repairs, then its only going to grow worse.
If you install solar panels on a damaged roof, youre eventually going to have to remove those solar panels so that you can replace the roof after which youll have to reinstall them. Not only is this more work it will cost more money. The general rule of thumb is that if your roof is more than 12 years old, you may want to replace it because its not worth the risk or the potential costs of replacing it in the future.
You should also schedule a roofing company to come inspect your roof. Youll want to make sure that the roof is in good shape and ready for solar panels. A good roofing company will tell you whether you should replace your roof before installing solar panels.
Installing solar panels is beneficial to both the environment and your energy usage. If your roof is in good condition and relatively new, you wont have to worry about replacing it first. Be sure to schedule a roof inspection by contacting us at Park Heights Roofing to ensure your roof is in good condition.
Install A Solar Array On The Ground
You can also install a ground-mounted solar power system in your yard. This is less expensive than creating racks on your roof or hanging them on a wall, but it does require a lot of yard space.
One of the best aspects of ground-mounted solar panels is easy maintenance. You can brush leaves or snow off of them without having to climb onto your roof.
Solar panel tracking systems can improve a systems output by ensuring constant, direct exposure to the sun, both during the day and across seasons. Axis trackers generate more electricity by using about the same amount of space as fixed systems.
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Do Solar Panels Damage My Roof
As long as you properly install solar panels, they should not cause any damage to the surface or infrastructure of your roof.
Based on data collected from a large group of homeowners, the highest percentage proves that solar panels will not undermine the condition of your roof.
If you collaborate with a qualified professional solar installer and your roof is in good condition, there should be no reason to worry, as there is absolutely no technical or physical feature of solar panels that may cause damage.
Solar panels mean clean energy on top of your roof. And it will not harm your roof if you follow more straightforward guidelines.
Some homeowners fear solar systems on their property, and eventually miss out on the benefits of solar energy, because they imagine that the installation will result in holes in the roof, leading to leakage. This will never happen with a proper installation, as solar panels are wrenched to the roof rafters.
If you are dealing with a professional installation expert, or directly with the solar panel manufacturer personnel, and are following the system guidelines, there should be no issues with your roof structure.
Frequently Asked Questions: What Else Makes Solar Panels Worth It
Theres a whole lot more to know about solar than just are solar panels worth it. Here are a few other questions people commonly want answers to about the worthiness of solar panels:
How much do solar panels cost?
As of July 2021, solar panels cost about $20,474 for a 10 kilowatt system. That includes the generous 26% federal solar tax credit, but not additional local rebates and incentives you may be able to take advantage of.
How long does it take for solar panels to pay for themselves?
Most property owners who get solar quotes on the EnergySage Marketplace will break even on their solar investment in seven to eight years. After that, youll be generating free electricity and racking up the savings!
Should you wait to buy solar panels?
Even though the cost of solar panels continues to fall, its usually not worth it to wait. The longer you wait to go solar, the more savings youre missing out on. In the long run, its worth it to go solar as soon as possible for most shoppers, instead of hoping for a much cheaper price down the road.
Why should you not get solar panels?
There are some situations, such as already low power demands or a home that has too much shade, where a solar system isnt ideal. In some cases, a home may require extensive renovations to support the weight and needs of a solar energy system.
Are there any drawbacks to solar power?Are solar panels worth it in your area? Should I get solar panels?
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Evaluate Your Sunlight Exposure
More sun means more energy produced and a greater potential to save with solar. Certain states, like Arizona and California, average more sunlight hours per day.
Your home’s orientation toward the sun, the amount of shade and its roof type also affect a solar system’s output. You can estimate the efficiency of panels in your area by using the SolarReviews calculator. Enter your address and the average cost of your monthly energy bill.
How Much Does Solar Panel Direction Affect Output
In the U.S., orienting solar panels true south will result in maximum output. Face them any other direction, and you can expect to see a fall in solar panel output.Approximate output loss by direction
North, south, east or west, which direction do you like the best? When it comes to solar panels, the answer is definitely south. The graphic shows ballpark figures for the output losses experienced by pointing your panels in a direction other than south.
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Depending On The Type Of Roof You Have And Aesthetic Considerations There Are Different Ways To Mount Solar Panels On Your Roof Here’s An Overview Of The Choices
The most visible part of a home solar system is the panels. Around 95% of homeowners choose a roof-mounted system, so how the panels are attached to the roof is a key detail of the installation.
Solar panels are attached to a roof using a mounting system. The most common type is a rail-based system, which uses aluminum rails as the structure onto which the panels and other components, such as wiring and inverter components, are attached. These rails in turn are attached to mounting points called footings that are bolted into the structural beams of the roof.
Another type that is becoming more popular is a railless mounting system. As the name suggests, railless systems dont have rails onto which the equipment is mounted. Instead, the solar panels are attached directly to footings that are fixed to your roof.
There are pros and cons to both types of mounting systems. While there are aesthetic considerations that might cause a homeowner to ask their installer to choose one type over another, technical demands will usually be the deciding factor. In addition, whether you have shingles, tiles, or metal on a flat or pitched roof will often dictate how your solar panels are mounted to your roof.
This is a pretty complicated topic, so Ill link to other articles Ive written that are specific to particular roof types. But first, lets start with the basics of how solar mounting systems work.
Reduced Their Carbon Footprint
Doing his part to slow down climate change is very important to Dan Thompson of Columbia, Missouri. Im happy knowing that Im no longer contributing to the use of fossil fuels when I cool my house, or even use my toaster, Thompson says. He had a powerful 8.25-kilowatt array installed on his modest ranch home three years ago. Now, Im getting a credit from the electric company almost every month for power I generate in excess of what I use.
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What Rebates And Incentives Are Available
Rebates and incentives significantly reduce your cost of solar and can actually put money into your pocket each month, translating to substantial long-term savings. The best solar incentive is the investment tax credit , which allows you to deduct 26 percent of your solar installation cost from your federal taxes theres no cap on its value, but your individual tax liability will determine whether youre able to take full advantage of this incentive.
Depending on where you live, you may also qualify for other various incentives that help you save more: in addition to the ITC, local incentives like state tax credits, cash rebates, solar renewable energy certificates , and performance-based incentives can increase your solar savings up to 50 percent!
How Will You Pay For Your Solar System
Whether you choose to buy or lease your solar panels will have a major impact on your savings. If you have enough to make a cash purchase, youll save more than with any other option but even with a zero-down solar loan, your savings could still be in the tens of thousands. While solar leases and power purchase agreements require no money down and promise a maintenance-free option, they come with a trade-off: your total savings will typically be just 10 to 30 percent of your utility electricity bill.
How does this play out in the real world? Check out the EnergySage Solar Calculator to see how your long-term savings will differ depending on whether you choose a cash purchase, a solar loan, or a solar lease or community solar, if thats something youre considering!
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Can You Have Solar Panels On A Flat Roof
Yes, you can have solar panels on a flat roof! If your roof has an angle below 5â6 degrees, we recommend installing solar panels that are slightly angled. When we install solar panels on a flat roof, we ensure that your solar panels get an angle of about 15-20 degrees in a southern direction, for the best possible results!
Are There Warranties On The Solar Panels Youre Installing
Most major solar panel manufacturers do include warranties on their solar panels. When youre speaking to a company about installing solar panels on your home, you should ensure that the panels they install have a performance warranty and if they cover the full life of your new solar panels.
The photovoltaic cell panels that we install at Sun Badger Solar come with a 25-year warranty that we also match with our workmanship warranty. You can rest assured that your solar panels will continue to produce electricity for many years to come!
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Solar Panel Maintenance Costs
Solar panels are pretty much maintenance-free and should last for at least 25 years.
Solar PV systems are relatively simple and have no moving parts, so they don’t need much maintenance.
However, within 25 years, youll need to replace the inverter 14% had a problem with their inverter, when we asked solar panel owners.*
Once youve had solar panels installed, your installer should give you written details of any maintenance checks you need to carry out occasionally to check your system is working properly.
Use our Trusted Traders search tool to find a solar panel installer in your area.
South Is Best Direction To Maximize Solar Panel Output
In the Northern Hemisphere, where the United States is located, solar panels will achieve maximum possible electricity production when they are facing south.
Thats because, on average, the sun shines directly over the Equator over the year. If youre north of the Equator, facing south towards it will maximize exposure to sunlight. In fact, in all regions north of the Tropic of Cancer – which includes the entire mainland U.S. – the Sun moves across the southern half of the sky all year round.
In other words, solar panels oriented south in the United States will face the sun all year long.
Pictured: The furthest north the suns path travels is directly over the Tropic of Cancer, roughly 23.5° north of the Equator, during the summer solstice . As all of the mainland U.S. is located north of the Tropic of Cancer, the sun shines to the south for us all year-round.
How much power will panels produce on your roof given its direction?
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What To Do If Your Roof Has Between 5 And 15 Years Of Life
If your roofer estimates that your roof is in the middle range of its remaining lifespan – around 5 to 15 years of life left – then your decision is a little tricker. You donât want to replace your roof too early, otherwise youâll be throwing away useful life of your roof.
But if you delay going solar, you can also be giving up the energy savings that come with generating your own electricity. So how do you decide?
The best thing you can do is to understand exactly how much money you can save with solar by finding out your payback period. The payback period is simply how many years a solar panel system will take to pay back your initial investment in the system through annual energy savings. Depending on where you live, high electricity prices and local rebates can push your payback period to as little as 5 years.
On the other hand, there are some places in the US where a lack of rebates and low electricity prices can make your solar payback relatively long – 15 years or even longer.
You can estimate your payback period quickly by using The Solar Nerd calculator. Just plug in your zip code and details about your roof, and itâll show you a graph of how many years it will approximately take for you to break even on your solar investment.
The calculator is a tool for doing a quick estimate on your own. For a more accurate assessment, contact multiple solar installers, who will each give you a system proposal and power generation estimate.
Which Angle Is Best For The Solar Panels
The best angle on your solar panels depends on where in Sweden you live. If you want to install solar panels on a roof in northern Sweden, we would recommend an angle of 35 degrees. However, if you live in southern Sweden, we recommend an angle of about 45 degrees to get the maximum effect from your solar panels. As a reference, an “average villa roof” usually has an angle of 40-45 degrees, which is excellent for solar panels.
In the table below you can see how the combination of direction and angle of the roof affect the effect of your solar panels.
However, we want to emphasize that the angle of the roof does not affect the production of solar energy to the extent that one can imagine. If your solar panels have an angle that differs up to 10 degrees from an optimal angle, it will only produce about 2 percent lower output than the maximum. Given that you do not have dirt or snow on the solar panels..
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