Installation of solar panels can be tricky, for instance, how do you know what solar panels can fit all your needs? How to choose a trustworthy installer? And should you inform your electricity company or not? Using solar panels as a source of power for your house is totally beneficial. You save substantially on electricity bills, it’s efficient and fully conserves the environment as it converts sunlight directly into electricity. If you have been considering going solar, there is no better time than now. The tips below can guide you through.
1. Do your research
Before deciding to invest in solar, it’s necessary to do research and find out what will work for you and how much you have budgeted for it. Some governments give subsidies for solar installations, find out if you are eligible for it.
2. Calculate the amount of power you need
Solar panels are measured by the quantity of power they produce, thus knowing the amount of electricity you use will help you in deciding how many solar panels you need. Also, the panels generate electricity based on how much sunlight they receive.
3. Contact your electricity retailer
Find out what will happen to your electricity bill and tariff if you go the solar way, know what feed-in tariffs are available and whether they will affect your current electricity tariff. Weigh the merits and demerits then make a decision.
4. Shop around for a solar retailer
Shopping around is important before selecting a system. Talking to different retailers about options will get you to obtain several options. Speaking with neighbors or friends who have installed solar panels can also be an eye opener; you may pick up some tips from their experiences.
5. Choosing the right panels
Whether you should choose Crystalline or Thin-Film? Crystalline are the common big blue panels, very efficient and durable, and they require a good racking system for installation. Thin-Film comes on a roll of flexible material, cheaper than crystalline and convenient since installation involves just placing the module on a smooth surface. Thin-film may not be that durable as compared to crystalline but they are quite affordable. Considering your budget, you will know what to choose.
6. Choosing solar inverters
Choosing the right inverter with the right wattage that can convert enough current to support all your electricity is a crucial step to solar installation. Buying a grid-tie is preferred over buying off-grid inverters. You may want to talk to solar experts about this or do a thorough research.
7. Deciding on Net Metering and Battery backups
Net metering; your typical power meter measures the amount of electricity you take from the grid. In this case, you need to get a special kind of meter that’s able to spin backward so you can measure the amount of electricity you are giving back to the grid.
Battery backups; you will need this when lights shut off as solar panels cannot function without light.
8. Installation regulations
Check with your local government and be sure what you are installing is legal, what house permits you need, also contact an electrician to be safe.
9. Sign the contract
When you are in conformance with the above and are fully satisfied, you can sign the contract with your solar retailer to formalize the installation process.
10. Installation of the system
Your retailer should tell you when the system will be installed. Make sure to get all the necessary documentation when the system is installed. The documentation will help you in making warranty or insurance claims.