Do you want to install Solar Panels at your home?


We are finding more and more homeowners that are looking to install solar panels to decrease their future unknown cost of electricity.   Things to consider when looking for panels.

Company-  Which solar company should we hire?  Wither you choose a local company or a national company, find a good company that has a track record and has been around for a few years.   After all, you want to make sure you hire a company that will be around in 25 years and that will actually honor your panels’ warranty.   Of course, we know that is unpredictable, but it’s a concern we all have.

Financing-  Some people pay for this outright with cash.  While others use a HELOC to pay for the cost.  Note, if you’re using a HELOC, most times they are adjustable rates and with the rise of interest rates its important to ensure you can afford this cost.  Some companies offer financing with a set interest rate that might sound more attractive.

Rebates-  Make sure you optimize your government and state rebates.  Ask the company you interview to see how they can help you maximize your savings.  Also check with your local state government as these rebates have been changing year to year.

Timing-  How backlogged is the company you are using.  This can be an important factor because if the rebates are only good until the end of the year and your solar doesn’t go up for months, you could miss out on collecting your rebates.  Another factor is the feds are raising the interest rates every quarter.  So you could be financing at a higher interest rate if it takes too long.

Thank you for reading our Solar blog.

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What are the different types of solar panels on the market today?

Monocrystalline – Known as a more expensive option but produces more electricity. 

Monocrystalline is black cells cut from a single silicon crystal. These solar panels can produce an energy-producing efficiency up to and slightly greater than 20% in capturing photons. They are also the most expensive option for solar panels. The higher cost is because the manufacturing process is more extensive with solar cells being made with silicon crystals. 

Uses- This option of Solar panels might be best used with needing a higher wattage produced from limited sunlight or limited space. An example is a single-family home that chooses to run air conditioning or electrical heating 24 hours a day might require this option of panels.   

Polycrystalline – Known as a similar look to monocrystalline but more affordable

Polycrystalline are fragments of silicon crystals that are melted together before being molded into wafers. These solar panels produce an energy production efficiency of roughly 15-17%. Because the cells are produced from fragments the manufacturing process is much simpler and cost-effective. For most people, the decision from choosing Polycrystalline vs. Monocrystalline is cost and space. 

Uses- Because Polycrystalline is a cheaper option if you are on a budget this might be for you. Keep in mind that it will also produce less energy. Two instances make sense. First, with the example of a single-family home, you don’t require as much energy to run the air conditioner or heating unit and are more focused on just powering the appliances. Or second, you have a large roof space and can put up more panels at a cheaper price point to produce the same amount of energy. This option might be for you.  

Thin-film panels- Known for their ability to flex and contour, but less effective. 

Thin-film panels come from various types of material. These solar panels have an energy-making efficiency of around 11%. First the most common is the (CdTe) cadmium telluride which is made by layering this material between transparent layers. The second is (a-Si) amorphous silicon made from non-crystalline in a silicon composition. Third is (CIGS) copper indium gallium selenide, which is placed between a transparent or conduction layer. 

Uses- Thin-film solar panels are the least effective way to produce photovoltaic energy. But they do have special benefits that make them necessary in certain circumstances. First, the panels are thin and light which makes installation quicker, less labor intensive, and more affordable. Second, they come in handy when roofs can’t hold heavy solar panels, such as commercial warehouses or plastic/thin metal roofs. Third, they are portable and flexible. Which makes it easy to move and contour to non-flat roofs. This is often seen in RVs and boats.  

These are the 3 most common solar panels today. We will discuss PERC and Bifacial panels in a future post.