BC 773866 A Minnesota licensed, registered and insured limited liability company located in Carver County Minnesota.
Below are some frequently asked questions.
Please contact us if you have other questions that we can answer.
How do solar photovoltaic (PV) panels work?
Solar panels work by taking the sun's energy during the day and converting it into direct current (DC) electricity. Most homes and businesses run on alternating current (AC) electricity, so the DC electricity is then passed through an inverter to convert it to usable AC electricity. At that point, you either use the electricity in your house or send it back to the electric grid. We only install microinverters for the safest method of energy utilization and modular flexibility.
Will I still receive an electric bill if I have solar panels?
Unless your solar energy system includes battery storage and you are fully "off the grid", you will still receive a bill from your utility. However, you can dramatically reduce your bill, or even cut the amount you owe to nearly $0 with a solar panel system that matches your energy use. Utility companies always have basic fees that are on the monthly statement that you may be responsible for. As the Earth rotates, the solar energy produced is higher in the Minnesota during the months of April - September. Your electricity bill may be higher in the off months of October - March. We do factor these differences in our investment analysis on whether a solar array system will make sense for you.
Do solar panels work in a blackout?
If your solar panel system is connected to the grid, it will shut off in the event of a blackout. This is to prevent emergency responders and electricity utility repair-people from being injured by your panels sending power back to the grid. However, there are certain inverters you can buy that provide backup power in a blackout when paired with a battery. We typically do not recommend wall battery backup systems due to the prohibitive cost. Technology for battery storage is quickly being developed! Enphase and Tesla are leading the charge. If you choose to purchase a backup battery, we can scale it for your most essential needs on your electrical panel and giving you peace of mind. And if you decide to add one later, your system is designed so that it allows you to do so.
What is net metering?
Net metering is the system that utilities use to credit solar energy system owners for the electricity produced by their solar panels. With net metering, you only pay for the electricity that you use beyond what your solar panels can generate. Our in-depth analysis and report will show you much your historical 12-month usage will project your future use for 25 years. Utility companies are and will continue to increase their rates. The biggest understated benefit of net metering is that you are protected from rate increases because your resale rate is their rate. The benefit is peace of mind when you are planning for your monthly expenses and budget. After your breakeven cost point, net metering is going to continue to provide great savings.
How much will solar panel maintenance cost?
Solar panel systems are made of durable tempered glass and require little to no maintenance for the warrantied 25 year period. They degrade slowly each year and then plateau at year 25. Impressively, the panels will continue to produce power at 85% of when they were installed new. Excessively dirty opaque debris (like bird droppings) would be beneficial to clean off but in general you don’t need to clean your solar panels. Snow and ice will melt off and again are factored into the efficiency of the solar panels' production. Rest assured though that we install only products with the best warranties on the market. So if something does happen, your investment includes warranties subject to their terms and conditions. Also in the case of damage due to weather or fire, your homeowner's policy will coverage all replacement costs less your deductible. Check with your insurance agent for questions on how a system will affect your coverage and rates. All utility companies require a minimum amount of personal liability coverage. Additionally our company will issue you a Certificate of Insured for the work that we perform.
Can I afford to go solar?
If you can afford to pay your electricity bill you can afford to go solar. Most systems are paid for in 5 to 7 years when you factor in tax incentives. Be sure to talk to your tax professional on how you may benefit from the Federal tax credit which is currently 26% through December 31, 2022
Can I make future changes or modifications later on?
Our modular installation method allows for removal and relocation of your solar array system. For example, you have a major remodel which affects the sun capture or decide that you would prefer a ground mount system instead.
Or you can replace your panels for higher producing solar panels as technology drastically improves. Or after utility rebates expire, and you are no longer subject to the 120% production limitation rule by Xcel, additional panels can be added for increased production with your utility company's approval. Please note, however, modifications of any kind require engineering, design and application for approval by your utility company unless you have an "off the grid" system and independently powering and storing your electricity. You can add a wall battery backup systems in a modular format also. Adding and expanding your solar array system is an option as your situation or circumstances may change. Our company has not established a "trade in" program. Upon your interest, we will source companies that can buy your used panels or manufacturers that will give you financial incentives to upgrade your panels.
What happens if there is snow on solar panels?
Solar panels convert sunshine into energy, so if your panels are covered in snow/ice they will produce little to no electricity. This typically only occurs with heavy snow falls which accumulate. Rest assured that PV panels and mounting systems are designed and installed to withstand the snow load in our region. Rooftop arrays are parallel with the pitch of the roof. Since our black solar panels are mounted at a tilted angle, snow will melt and slide off. If you have a lower pitch roof that normally has a longer duration of snow accumulation, it may take longer to melt off. If snow does accumulate, your panels can be cleared using a roof snow removal tool (15-21 feet) with a soft edge if your system is located where it is safe to do so. Even removing the lower section of your system array will speed up the melting process.