Solar Panel Roof Cochise

When Will Solar Panels Pay For Themselves?

Contact different vendors and request quotes before you put money into Solar Panel Shingles in Cochise. The expenses of solar energy lost can accumulate significantly with time. Start small if you’re just beginning with solar panels.

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Once you've determined how much sunlight you receive each year by analysing meteorological data and your current electricity usage, you can start creating a list of necessary parts, building materials and permits to get your solar project underway.

What You'll Need

Adding solar power to your home with PV cells starts with the big question of whether you want to remain hooked up to the grid or not.

Off Grid - If you go off grid, you'll almost certainly need to have a generator or battery to supply power when solar energy isn't available. Even if you plan for the worst case scenario, you never know when you'll get 30 days of consecutive cloud cover and rain blocking out your power source. Solar panels last 30 years or longer, but batteries may only last 2-5 years depending on usage, and they are very toxic so they need to be stored and disposed of properly.

On Grid - If you choose to remain on the grid, you will need to do a lot of research to determine what your local laws are and how to follow the power company's regulations. You will likely need special equipment to ensure the power remains compatible and that, if there is a power outage, you don't continue pumping out electricity to dead power lines (this is a huge safety issue).

Batteries

If you opt to go off grid and install batteries, make sure you choose a deep cycle battery made with either lead-acid or nickel-cadmium. These batteries will last longer and match the energy storage and release requirements for a solar power system.

Charge Controller

Additionally, you'll need to purchase a Charge Controller. A charge controller is important in making sure your battery doesn't get drained too fast or overcharged. When the battery is full, it will stop the charging cycle and when it is drained too low, the controller will stop drawing off the battery to extend battery life.

Inverter

If you remain on the grid, your inverter should also stop the flow of electricity from your home to the power company when the power is out. This will protect any electrical workers from working on live lines. Inverters are sometimes included in PV cell kits or with basic installation packages, so check with your contractor before buying a separate inverter.

Generators

For those that want to go completely off-grid, a generator is necessary, even if you have a battery backup. If the power is low and your batteries are starting to lose their charge, you'll need a generator to recharge the batteries or provide emergency power. If your power output suddenly overwhelms the inverters, you will also need a generator to supply backup power.

A good generator should be directly connected to the inverter, so that when you turn on the generator, the inverter will immediately recognize the new power source and switch the entire load to it. Generators come in many options including gasoline, diesel, and gas.

Assorted Other Parts

Wiring - Wiring needs will vary depending on the size of your system and the number of panels.

Grounding Equipment - Grounding is a vital safety consideration and is required for all electrical work.
Overcurrent Protection - Regulates and protects the power supply from excess current and shortages.
Junction Boxes - Junction boxes will protect and preserve your conduits and cables from the elements and other outside factors like bugs or rodents.
Disconnects - The DC disconnect shuts down the Direct Current from the Solar Cells - usually mounted outside the house for quick access in the event of an emergency, while the AC Disconnect shuts down the Alternating Current from the inverter, generator, or power grid.

And of course, there will be the solar panels themselves. With recent advances in technology, there are more options for solar panels than ever before, but it is still important to choose panels that fit your budget and the sizing options for your home.
Permits

Before you start hammering away at your new solar energy system, contact your local municipality and learn if there are any permits required. The odds are that you will need to acquire at least a building permit, and possibly additional permits for the installation of a solar system. Heating systems are usually more straightforward, while PV cell systems might require a lot of paperwork, especially if you plan to say connected to the grid.

If you're planning on running wires and changing how your house connects to the power grid, you're almost certainly going to need an electrician, and an inspector will be required to look at the finished product and sign off on all safety regulations. Exceptions include New York City and Chicago, which both have their own building codes.