The potential of solar energy explained.
Below are the top Q&A's we are asked on a regular basis.
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How does solar
Photons from the sun hit the panel's top surface layer which contain negatively charged electrons. If the photon is the right frequency it's energy is absorbed by the negative electrons. The electron which absorbed the extra energy is now at a higher energy level and can "escape". That electron (being negative) is attracted to the positive layer of the solar panel and travels down wires connecting the front and back of the solar cells. This movement of electrons is electricity.
The sun's light (photons) get absorbed by the solar panel’s top negative surface.
Charged negative electrons break free of their weaker negative counterparts and escape towards the bottom layer containing positive electrons. The movement of electrons from neg to pos is the definition of electricity.
An inverter converts the DC into Alternating Current (AC) electricity, which you can use to power your home appliances or office computers.
In a grid-tie scenario (net-metering) any additional electricity that's not used by your home is then transferred into the power grid, generating you a credit.
The most beautiful thing about grid-tie systems is that when you need more power than your solar system can produce, the deficient electricity is then automatically taken out from the grid, such as at night time.
1. Will going solar save me money?
Yes. Going solar will protect you against rising electricity rates in the future and how much you can save depends on the amount of solar hours in your area. How long it takes to recoup the cost of your system depends on your energy consumption and how many solar panels you have. Regardless, going solar is a smart investment no matter where you live.
2. Have solar panels come down in price?
YES! Since 2008 prices on solar panels have dropped by over 85%. Panel prices have hit an all time low nearing $0.40/watt making it extremely affordable, allowing customers to pay off their system in an average of 2 - 7 years.
3. What if my roof doesn't face South?
Great question and very important. The farther a panel is facing from true South the less energy it can harvest throughout the year. But don't write off going solar just yet! We build and provide ground mount and pole mount options. If you have some free space in your yard then this is a great option - and we can point your panels at true south with ease.
4. How much does a solar system cost?
Let us start off by saying.... a whole lot LESS than you think. Our business model is to help everyone who wants to make a positive environmental change do so without having to get a second mortgage! Entry level systems tend to start around the $2500 mark and increase from there depending on how much energy you consume annually.
5. How come you don't offer solar thermal hot water systems?
Solar Panel pricing has dropped so dramatically that it's now cheaper to purchase a panel or two which will offset ALL the energy used to run a conventional hot water tank. Plus there are no worries of the solar thermal pipes freezing and bursting causing flooding and other problems.
6. Can I use Solar Panels to recharge my Hybrid Car?
You bet! We have a couple options here sorted in order of cost: 1: A small 2 - 4 panel system that can be used to charge your vehicle only during the day. Any excess power generated while you're not charging a vehicle is lost. 2: A small 2 - 4 panel grid-tied system that will feed excess energy generated to your home or to B.C. Hydro's grid. Since this system is grid-tied, you can charge your vehicle at night. 3: A small 2 - 4 panel system that feeds a battery bank located at your premises. From there you would draw stored power from the battery bank to charge your vehicle night or day.