Are you thinking about switching to solar energy but don’t know where to start? Solar panels can help save you money while conserving energy. Here’s what you should before you install solar panels on your roof.

What is a Solar Panel System exactly?

The solar panel system consists of four or five different components, depending on the system you choose. This includes the panels, mounting system, monitoring system and inverter.

The solar panels are what turn the sun’s energy into electricity. The semiconductors are including in the solar cell panels. When the semiconductors are stimulated by sunlight, they are activity electrons that generate direct current (DC) power.

There are two basic types of solar panels – the polycrystalline silicon and the monocrystalline silicon.

The monocrystalline panels are black panels that are made from a single pure silicon cell. They are the most commonly used type of solar panel that is the most energy efficient as but also the most expensive. Polycrystalline silicon is blue panels that absorb less sunlight. As technology will continue to evolve, polycrystalline may eventually surpass in the future.

You Need a Solar Pro

Installing a solar panel system isn’t a primary construction job. To build an efficient system, you will need to install wiring and a panel placement correctly. Hiring a solar pro is best for the job. Look for a solar expert who offers a strong warranty for at least ten years. Panels are often covered for at least 20-25 years minimum.

Make sure the pro installs panels that are manufactured in the United States to protect your warranty. Outsourcing installation can lead to complication and less accountability if it doesn’t go according to plan.

Benefits of Using Solar Energy

Solar Energy Helps Reduce the Cost of Energy Bills
Why spend hundreds of dollars every month on your local energy company where there are other safe and cost-effective options for you? When you are leasing or own a home, solar panels will help reduce the cost of your daily energy needs and even slash the bills in half by switching to solar. Some even say their energy bills go as little as zero with little energy use.

Solar Energy Increases the Value of Your Home
Installing solar panels can increase the property value of your home. This will definitely come in handy if you plan to sell your house later on.

Solar Energy Helps the Environment
The more you rely on the use of solar power, the less energy you will consume from fossil fuel. Every kilowatt hour of energy that is produced by the sun reduces reliance on foreign oil. Using solar energy will support your local solar community instead of foreign oil.

Solar Energy Reduces Carbon Footprint
The solar panel is photovoltaic cells that are special batteries that capture sunlight and transform it into useable energy. The energy will then be sent to an inverter and be converted into electricity.

Cost Effective
The price of solar panels has decreased by nearly 60% since the start of 2011. This is due to the local tax credits and subsidies that helped average the costs to around $17,000.

Tax Incentives
According to the federal solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), there is a 30% tax credit for all commercial and residential properties that convert to solar energy. As the local tax incentives vary by state and local areas, Los Angeles residents can use the ITC and receive property tax exemption as well as a rebate of $0.12 per KW-hour for 20 years. This is definitely worth considering if you plan to take advantage of commercial availability.

What You Should Consider

Permits Are Required
Keep in mind that permit is a must as this is a big part of the waiting game and may take a bit of time between contract signing and installation. The cost may vary by municipality.

Assess Your Energy Needs
Understanding how much a solar system will make in your energy bill depends on how much energy you actually use. Consider the average use by adding the year’s worth of bills and divide them by 12. This will give you an estimate of how much energy you generate a month.

Monitor Your Usage
Using cheap energy meters can help you keep track of how much energy you use. Determine the specified times of the day that uses up the most energy.

Consider Your Temperature
If you live in an area that enjoys 365 days of sun, you will get the most out of your solar panels. Air conditioners are the best energy users in the home. But if you experience more cloudy or rainy weather, perhaps a solar system may not be best. Are you an avid user during the summer? Consider bumping the AC temp during the hot days of summer and decrease it in the winter. Solar panels are supply a significant amount of energy even with less than ideal weather conditions.

Follow this guide to help you determine whether or not you should install solar panels.