Solar panels are saving money for thousands of homeowners across the country. Every year more families are choosing to install solar electric systems that power up their appliances and keep the lights on.
If you’re interested in joining this growing energy trend, congratulations! You may be looking for a cost-saving solution in the suburbs or a way to power an off-grid cabin far from power lines.
Regardless of location, going green with solar is always a smart decision. Here’s a quick summary of how to install solar panels and the steps you should take to ensure a safe process.
How to Install Solar Panels
When you’re ready to install solar panels on your home, the first step is to contact a solar company. They will send a technician to inspect your roof and determine how much sun is available.
Based on their findings, the technician will recommend the best type of panels to install and give you a price estimate. Most of the time a roof replacement is not necessary, but if a roof has issues it’s always better to fix them before situating the panels.
A good solar company will be able to answer all your questions and provide information about discounts, tax rebates, and other solar perks. They’ll have a good handle on all the logistical details involved in a solar installation, like building permits and any local municipal requirements.
Ideally, your solar company will handle all the paperwork and permits for you. This can take a couple of months, so why not leave it to experienced professionals? Once approved, solar panel installation averages a day or two.
Choose and Order Your System and Components
Most installers will recommend one of the three main types of solar panels: monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin-film. The right choice for you will depend on several factors, including the size and angle of your roof. If you live close to the equator, you benefit from direct sunlight, which may reduce the number of panels you need.
In addition to the panels themselves, you may want to order backup batteries or a generator. This will depend on whether your house connects to the electric grid. If your goal is to be remote, having a backup system is a logical choice.
Attach the Panels
The process of attaching solar panels to your roof is usually straightforward. Most solar companies set up a grounded metal frame or rack which attaches a few inches above your roof. It may be sat at an angle to catch the sunlight in a more efficient way. After this, they attach the panels and wire everything into a control box inside your house.
Get Final Approval
In some locations, you may need to have your new solar system inspected by the power company or local building codes department. Your solar company should be able to arrange this as part of their logistics management.
Enjoy Using Your New Solar System
Once your system receives approval, you can finally flip the switch!
You’ll find that it’s very satisfying to use the sun’s rays to power your home. Although installing solar panels can cost a little on the front end, over 20 years the amount of savings is about $20,000!
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