Adopting solar energy is a great way to establish energy independence. Using power produced by a rooftop photovoltaic system instead of traditional grid electricity means you’ll rely less on the utility company. And as a result, your monthly energy bills will be much lower.
Before making the decision to invest in a photovoltaic solar panel system, ask yourself the three important questions below.
How Much Electricity Should Your Solar Energy System Produce?
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the average home rooftop photovoltaic system is 5 kW. Will yours need to be larger than that? Or could a smaller array provide you with sufficient power?
To answer this question, you must determine how much electricity your household uses each month.
Grab your energy bills from the past year (if you still have them) or head to your utility company website to view them online. Take a look at your usage patterns and identify how much electricity you consume during an average month.
But your photovoltaic array doesn’t have to produce all of the electricity you need in your home. Installing a smaller system that provides a portion of your household power will still save you money on your monthly utility bills. But the more free power you can produce yourself, the less you must rely on the rapidly degrading power grid and infrastructure.
Is Your Roof Suited for Installing a Solar Energy Solution?
A photovoltaic array is not appropriate for every rooftop. Some roofs have serious shading from trees or nearby buildings, or have roof features like vents and chimneys that would significantly reduce photovoltaic output. Others don’t have the proper orientation and pitch for solar panels to be effective.
Even if your rooftop seems ideal for going solar, that doesn’t mean it actually is. You could have structural problems, rendering your roof incapable of supporting a photovoltaic array. If you’re concerned about the integrity of your roof, you can request an evaluation from a roofing contractor.
Fortunately, even if your roof is not ideal, a qualified solar energy solutions provider can identify a workable solution. Ground-mounted PV arrays, for example, mean you can enjoy the benefits of photovoltaic energy even if your roof poses a challenge.
How Will You Finance Your Solar Energy Solution?
If you plan to purchase your solar power system with cash, you’re in the minority. Few homeowners are in a position to buy a photovoltaic array outright. Fortunately, several cost-effective financing options are available. We can help you determine which method of financing to use, but it can be helpful to know about your options ahead of time.
Home equity loans, personal lines of credit and energy-efficient mortgages are all popular choices. Many of our customers prefer to go with private loan programs. Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) solar energy financing is an option for homeowners in some states, and many photovoltaic contractors — including IWS — offer a bulk purchasing or community solar program to make going solar more affordable.
At Intermountain Wind & Solar, we specialize in helping you identify the most cost-effective options for photovoltaic energy. We serve commercial and residential customers throughout Utah, Nevada, Idaho, Wyoming and Colorado. Contact us today to learn how you can save money and establish energy independence through solar energy solutions.