Is solar power right for my home or business?
Submit a quote request and we will determine that for you FREE OF CHARGE!
What does a typical solar panel system cost to install?
This is a very common question (and rightly so), as cost is very important to all of us. Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut answer to this question. There are many variables to consider in installing a solar system, including the size of the system, how much electricity you want to produce, what type of mounting the system will require, and what type of government incentives are available. If you would like to get an estimate of a solar system for your home or business, please contact us with your information, and we will contact you with a more detailed FREE analysis of how much your residential or commercial solar system would cost.
How quickly can you install a solar project?
Similar to price, there are many factors to consider when discussing the actual installation time. As a rule of thumb, small residential projects can be completed in as little as 1 day, with medium to large commercial and agricultural projects being completed within 1-2 weeks. However, before the solar panel system actually gets installed, there is usually 1-2 months’ worth of paperwork, permitting, and administrative work, which we will complete for you.
How can solar energy help the economy?
Solar energy is generated locally (on the roof or ground mounts). The energy dollars stay at home, creating economic growth and benefiting your community. In addition, solar jobs are growing at more than 20 times the national average. Every 4 minutes, another American home or business goes solar and every solar panel is installed by a worker whose job can’t be outsourced.
What regular maintenance do solar panels require?
Very little. PV systems are inherently very low-maintenance, requiring the system owner only to wash the solar panels down with water when they get dirty so light can get through.
How long will my solar energy system last?
If properly installed, it should last 30-40 years. Systems that were installed in the 1970’s are still fully operational today. Technology has evolved so the systems from the 1970’s may not be as efficient as today’s technology.
How does electricity buyback (Net-Metering) work?
If you generate more electricity than you use, the excess goes back to your utility company, spinning the meter backward and giving you a credit for the electricity your solar panel system generated. In simple terms, net metering allows residential and commercial customers who generate their own electricity from solar power to feed electricity they do not use back into the grid. If you do overproduce, most utility companies pay you the difference at the end of the yearly billing cycle.
If there is a power outage, will my solar system keep making energy?
Many people considering going solar ask if a solar system works during a power outage. If you have a solar battery system as well as a solar PV system, your power will continue to work. However, since your system is grid-tied, for safety reasons, if there is a power outage your solar system will automatically shut off when the power goes out. DayStar offers a backup battery solution that is offered with every system as an option.
Should you wait to go solar until battery back-up is less expensive?
Why wait? You can start saving money right now with a battery backup. Homeowners who own their solar systems are generating extra income and making profits from the excess energy their system produces. This happens more frequently with a battery backup in place. Typical ROI is 125% in 5 years and it will continue to increase. You can add a solar battery back-up system to your current solar PV system now, we will show you how affordable it can be.
What is a kilowatt hour?
This is what you pay for when you buy energy from the local utility company. A kilowatt-hour (kWh) is a unit for measuring energy. It is, as its name suggests, one kilowatt of power used over a period of one hour.
Do you do ALL work in-house?
It depends on the which installer is used for your job. We have an in house team nd we sub work out to partners who are some of the best subcontractors in Maryland. HOWEVER – We ARE on-site providing quality control, communication with the customer. Whether its done in house or not you are fully protected by our insurance.
Can my homeowners association stop me from installing solar panels?
No it cannot. According to DSIRE (Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency)
“HOAs are barred from restricting a homeowner’s right to install solar panels. States which have laws that override any HOA contracts seeking to deny the right to install solar PV systems include: Maryland and Virginia.
Are any tax credits available to me?
Yes! There is a 30% federal tax credit available for all solar projects. Additionally, each state has a unique set of incentives.
Do the panels need to be placed on my roof?
No. Solar panels can be installed anywhere, as long as they can receive direct sunlight and minimal shading. We use roof mounts and ground mounts to install the panels, and can also install solar carports.
Does my roof type matter?
It depends on the installer (some don't do clay tiles). We can install on any roof type. Whether your roof has asphalt shingles or tile, of it’s flat or pitched. If you have a roof, we can install solar panels.
How many panels do I need?
It depends on how much power you consume. We use your recent electric bills to assess that amount, and then we’ll design a system specifically for that level of usage (or to fit your budget or roof size).
Should I worry about the weight of the panels affecting my roof’s structural integrity?
Most recently-built houses are constructed to be able to support the extra weight of solar panels. However, if we have any questions as to whether your roof can support solar panels, we will have a third-party engineer do a structural analysis to determine if extra support is needed.
What business/insurance licenses does your company have?
VA AES License. MD MHIC License. General Liability, Auto, and Workers Comp 1 million dollars each.
How long is your proposal good for?
Why were solar panels not proposed for other portions of the roof? (i.e., for panels that were not south facing)
South facing roofs produce the best. I could have added more to the other roofs but the south facing ones already get you to around 100%, which is the most the utility company allows.
Can panels be placed on the east and west sections of the roof? What effects would this have on power generation?
They could, it would reduce the output by around 20%.
Can these systems be damaged by hail?
They’re hail impact tested. No hail around here would damage them.
Does the age of the roof have any effect on installation?
Yes, we do not recommend installing panels on a roof with less than 5 years life left.
If so, what is the oldest age for a roof that you are willing to do an installation on?
Depends on the expected life. On a 20-year roof we wouldn’t recommend installing a solar system past 15 years. A 40-year roof we wouldn’t recommend installing on past 35-years.
Can you take care of the roof work as well?
Yes, we can have that taken care of for you as well, ask us to provide a quote for it.
If we later need to replace the roof, do we have to pay your company to temporarily remove the solar panels? How much would that cost?
Yes, it would cost around $1200 to uninstall and reinstall the panels.
Who can do repairs if the system requires maintenance?
Systems very rarely need maintenance. We have a 20-year warranty that would cover anything that needs to be replaced. Past that, any licensed solar company can perform troubleshooting.
How much does the system weigh? What effect will it have on the roof, if any?
System will weigh around 1200 lbs- 2.7 pounds per square foot, which is far less than the minimum dead load requirements of 15 lbs. It will protect the roof from rain and sunlight, which are the two major causes of shingle deterioration.
Your proposal doesn’t account for all of the vent pipes on the roof. Will this be a problem?
Some vent pipes can be shaved and gone over (plumbing vents). Others (exhaust vents) cannot. After a customer signs, we come and do a site inspection to determine what, if any, changes need to be made.
How much does it cost to replace an inverter/solar panel?
All the parts are warrantied so we will replace anything that malfunctions free of charge.
How often will the solar panels need to be cleaned? How much would this cost?
Solar panels are designed to shed dust and debris with regular rain and wind. No cleaning necessary.
What warranties does your company have for the work/products used?
25 year on panels and inverters. 20-year umbrella warranty which we replace any malfunction parts free of charge. Again, because solar systems have no moving parts, malfunctions are extraordinarily rare