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Should You Have Solar Panels Installed at Your Home?

September 28, 2016 at 5:29 pm | Category: solar

Solar PanelsThe technology for solar power has been around for decades. NASA has been using solar-powered satellites since the 1960s, and some US homes have had passive solar heating systems since World War II. But solar powered homes have only recently become a popular notion.

The benefits of solar energy are immediately obvious: For at least the next few billion years we’ll have access to sunlight, solar energy is clean and has no greenhouse-gas emissions, and it’ll save you money on your electric bills. So why aren’t more homes equipped with solar panels?

Homeowners in San Francisco still feel a little iffy about using solar energy. While it’s been steadily increasing in popularity, it’s not uncommon to have a few questions.

Before you make any big decisions about upgrades for your home, you need to weigh your options. So let’s look at exactly what solar panels could do for you.

At Owens Electric, our professional San Francisco electricians can help you decide whether or not solar panels are right for your home, and we can provide you with a high-quality installation if you decide they are. Keep reading to learn more about how solar panels can benefit your home.

Lower Your Electricity Costs

First of all, you’ll see a dramatic decline in your electricity bill after installing solar panels. Most homeowners see their electricity bills drop by more than 50%. Even if you need a payment plan to have your panels installed, that payment and your new electricity bill are less than the old electricity bill in most cases. You’ll see a return on your investment immediately.

Save Money with Tax Incentives

Through 2016, the IRS is offering tax incentives to help with the growth of solar power in the US. The Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit gives individual taxpayers a credit of 30% to help pay for qualified residential alternative energy equipment, including solar panels. So if you spend $10,000 on solar panels, you’d receive $3,000 in either tax cuts or in addition to your refund. So you can easily reduce the initial investment on your solar panels.

You should also check with your local electric company to see about any rebates they offer for using solar energy. Currently, KCPL is offering $.50 per watt of electricity used as a rebate for any homeowners using solar energy as an alternative.

Help the Environment

Also, solar energy helps out tremendously with the environment. It’s a completely renewable resource, and it provides 6,000 times more electricity in one day than the earth uses in a full year. And your San Francisco home’s solar panels won’t create any emissions whatsoever.

On average, a homeowner using solar electricity will offset the same amount of carbon as if they had planted 2,500 trees of cut down on their driving by 285,000 miles.

If you’re looking for solar panels in San Francisco, call Owens Electric at 800-944-2252, or fill out our online request form.

How Long Will the Solar Panels on My San Francisco Home Last?

November 9, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Category: solar

Solar panels – the photovoltaic panels that generate electricity from the energy in sunlight-are being used increasingly by San Francisco homeowners to reduce their electricity bills. Mounted on the roof, they operate quietly and unobtrusively with little maintenance required. They have no moving parts. They generate no greenhouse gases. Solar panels, once installed, will generate electricity for the home as long as the sun is shining. While there are numerous advantages to solar photovoltaic panels, the single biggest disadvantage is cost. Subsidies and tax incentives have made it possible for people to purchase and install solar electrical systems and earn a reasonable return as long as they will remain in operation for a sufficiently long period of time.

Thus, it is worth posing a question that is seldom asked. How long will solar panels last?

On average most solar panels that are professionally installed by your San Francisco solar contractor come with a 20 to 25 year warranty. If the manufacturers are willing to supply a warranty that long, it is likely that the panels will have a useful operating lifetime that is even longer. Indeed, some manufacturers claim that solar panels continue to work for an astounding 40 to 80 years! The main point of degradation with solar photovoltaic panels is long-term damage from the sun. When degradation is starting to occur the panels will begin to show a reduced capacity to generate electricity. But, as noted above, this is likely to occur only after many years of useful service.

The classic solar panel is based on crystalline silicon, and the technology is well-established. The crystalline silicon-containing panels have been engineered for many years to be stable and durable, with an excellent operating track record to back up the claims of long operating lifetimes. The newer thin film solar panels do not have this track record, and the evidence is that they have a much shorter operating life, perhaps only about 5 to 10 years. Confirmation of this shorter useful operating life comes from the manufacturers warranties that are provided with the thin films. Most thin film panels carry warranties of only between 2 and 5 years.

The required maintenance for solar panels is thus minimal. The most important thing San Francisco homeowners can do to keep their photovoltaic solar systems functioning efficiently is to keep them clean. Periodically hosing them off, or wiping them off, to remove dust, and particulates will insure that the panels are receiving the maximum amount of sunlight possible. With this simple step you can expect your solar panels to function for much more than the 20 years guaranteed by the manufacturer. Indeed, the solar panels may outlive the homeowners in many cases.

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Burlingame Solar Home Energy Developments Mean Better PV Solar Panels

May 10, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Category: solar

One of the problems with photovoltaic (pv) solar panels is their inefficiency relative to other forms of renewable energy. In a way this is not important because solar energy is free. But solar home energy systems do tend to need a lot of space to produce useful amounts of electric power.

having a Burlingame  solar power system built  is easy, and the material costs are not very much. Nevertheless, smaller systems would be very welcome, and many solar electric companies, such as Mitsubishi Electric, are rapidly developing residential solar energy systems that will produce pv solar panels with much greater efficiency and at much lower cost. A professional Burlingame solar contractor can assist you

Halving costs every eight years is now the target, at the same time achieving efficiency improvements of 25% to 30%.

One illustration of how this is being done is to concentrate solar energy on to each pv cell with a sort of magnifying glass. This is known as the fresnel effect, which uses a series of optical lenses to direct large amounts of sunlight on to small areas of pv material. It has already been possible to achieve the same amount of electricity with one fortieth the size of a standard pv cell, and this will improve further.

By using new forms of polycrystalline cells it is now possible for pv solar panels to produce nearly 25% more electricity. Solar power for homes is getting better and cheaper, and it is not confined to sunbelt states either. The fact is that pv solar panels depend on available light conditions rather than direct sun. They do work best in hot countries, where daylight levels are good, but they do also work very well in colder climates.

Quite possibly this sort of thing will be coming to a solar home near you in the next year or so.

On the subject of financial assistance, or the lack of it, by many countries and states, there is now a noticeable determination to be seen in many governments to put the funding of diy home energy systems on a sound footing. The European Union has various directives in force that mandate very significant improvements in renewable energy systems by 2020, and many member states are finally co-operating to achieve these targets. As a result pv-sourced solar energy is expected to rise from the present 1% to perhaps as much as 12% of total energy usage by that time and, to enable this to happen, so-called feed-in tariffs have been introduced by many countries to encourage investment in commercial and residential alternative energy systems. Versions of this exist already in many US states.

Your professional Burlingame electricians are here to assist you with your Burlingame solar needs so give them a call today and see what they can do for you.

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If you are looking for a professional electrician in the San Francisco area, then please call us today at 800-944-2252 or complete our online request form.

If you are looking for a professional electrician in the San Francisco area, then please call us today at 800-944-2252 or complete our online request form.