What is Net-Metering?
Net metering is a billing process that credits solar energy system owners for the electricity they add to the grid at the retail rate. It allows utility customers to use the electricity anytime, instead of only when it is generated. This means that a home can generate power during the day from a PV system and get kWh (kilowatt-hours) credited to be used at night or any other time they may need it. Credits are totaled each month by the utility and credits generated in low usage months may be used in higher usage months. In VA, only systems generating enough energy to offset typical annual consumption are allowed.
How are the panels mounted to my roof?
All our designs are carefully vetted by a Structural Engineer for wind and snow loading. The systems we use add a nominal load of under 3 lbs/sq ft to your roof. Roof penetrations are sealed and double flashed and backed by our 10 year warranty. Every mount is thoroughly attached directly to rafters for additional strength.
What is the warranty on my PV Solar System?
The solar modules are covered by a 12-year manufacturer warranty and the balance of the system is covered by a 10-year warranty. Warranty extension is available if desired.
What happens if I sell my home?
Most home-buyers will be thrilled with the prospect of free electricity. This fact increases the value of your home and provides you in most cases with a much higher return on your investment compared to a kitchen or a bathroom remodel. This is not usually the case with a leased Solar System. Our company does not recommend and does not market leased systems.
How do PV cells work?
The creation of electricity using a solar energy system starts with photovoltaic cells, otherwise known as PV cells. These cells include a positive and a negative slice of silicon placed under a thin slice of glass. Sunlight that shines onto the PV cell knocks electrons loose from the silicon. Small wires collect these electrons and, when connected in a circuit, an electric current is formed. The electricity formed is direct current (DC) and is led through wires to an inverter. The inverter changes the current to an alternating current (AC) and is then distributed to the existing electrical circuits in your home. At this point, any excess electricity is sent back to the grid (Utility Power) or to a series of deep cycle batteries (off-grid).
What happens if I produce more energy than I use?
Excess electricity is exported back to the electrical utility company and the kWh’s are credited. You use these credits when your system isn’t producing enough power for your current demand.
Will my PV System work in cloudy weather or at night?
Your PV Solar System will still work even in cloudy weather. If it is mildly overcast, your system may produce about half as much as it would during bright, sunny conditions. Your solar system does require sunlight to work, so the system will not produce power at night. It’s during these hours that your electric utility company will provide electricity.
What happens if the power goes out?
During any type of power outage, your PV system will automatically shut down and restart once power has been restored. This shutdown is for safety and is required by law. A battery storage system can be used if back-up power functionality is desired.
What about extreme wind and weather?
We only use the highest quality modules and racking systems that are individually tested, comply with UL-Standards and are built to withstand 115+ mph winds and 1-inch hail.
Is there any maintenance required on my PV System?
Your PV System has no moving parts, so it requires virtually no maintenance. In most cases occasional rain will rinse the dust and pollen off the modules. The system is monitored in real-time using smartphone app and is capable of notifying us immediately should there be a problem.