Do Your Bit – Install Solar Panels

DO YOUR BIT- INSTALL SOLAR PANELS

Solar panel installation is gradually becoming a necessary adoption for homeowners  as the need for clean and renewable energy keeps growing significantly. The various installation and financing options makes it possible for homeowners to power their homes in an economically sustainable way. Despite the potential benefits it provides, installing solar panels for your home is an important task and should entail proper planning. From setting a suitable budget and  finding the right installation company to using the right equipment and maintaining your solar panels after installation. To ensure a smooth solar panel installation, it’s important to consider the following steps. 

CONSIDER YOUR HOME’S AVAILABLE SPACE

So you’ve decided to invest in a solar system, now it’s time to consider how much space is needed to accommodate them. You can begin by assessing your electricity consumption history, this will help give an idea of the number of solar panels required. Then, you have to decide where to install them. Will they be mounted on the roof, ground or a mixture of both? In addition, you also have to consider the movement of the sun and ensure that the solar panels are installed in a location with constant and dependable sunlight. Avoid installing the solar panels in a location with little sunlight or areas that have obstacles blocking the sunlight.

ORIENT YOUR HOME FOR INSTALLATION

Before you begin the installation process, it’s important to take every aspect of your home into consideration. If you plan on installing solar panels on the roof of your home, have a professional assess the state and weight-bearing capacity of the roof. This is to ensure your roof system can support the load projected by the array of solar panels. Another thing to take into consideration is your roof space. Sufficient space enables your solar system to provide your house with sufficient electricity throughout the year. A roof with limited space reduces the space for solar panels thereby causing a decrease in the size of the solar array. In addition, the roof covering should possess an additional 10 years lifetime. If that’s not the case, then have the roof covering fully replaced before installing the solar panels, for they are not easily removed once installed. Plan around these areas to help maintain the integrity of your solar panel system.

CALCULATE YOUR ENERGY REQUIREMENTS

As you prepare your home for installation, you have to ensure that the energy produced by the solar panels is capable of handling your needs, even during peak hours. 

One way you can begin is by calculating your energy requirements, you can do this by averaging out the kWh number that is located at the bottom part of your electricity bills. Remember to consider each season’s energy requirements to get a suitable estimate of your energy needs.

FIND THE RIGHT INSTALLATION COMPANY

As you plan your solar panel installation project, you also want to choose a company that has the right experience and licenses to work in your area. Some areas have different rules and regulations, so consider contacting your local authorities to confirm if they are any licensing requirements. A proper installation company capable of handling both residential and commercial solar panel installation or industrial electrical installation will address any issues that arise in the installation process while ensuring your equipment preferences are incorporated. Beware of installers who may try to coerce you into using only their recommendations. They could be using it as a means to overcharge you, especially if the installation process involves ground mounting, string inverters or solar batteries. The installers should possess a combination of flexibility, at least four years of experience and a positive word-of-mouth reputation. You can ask for references from previous customers that have solar systems installed ( up to 2-3 years ago) and ensure you find out about their overall satisfaction with the solar system installation.

USE THE RIGHT EQUIPMENT

Choosing the right equipment is crucial to getting the best out of your solar panel installation. It’s important to consider two primary components for your solar system ; solar panels and inverters. Your installer may recommend a suitable brand for each of them. Most homeowners look out for factors like durability, efficiency and aesthetics when evaluating various brands. Also, if the solar system is to be mounted on the roof, you should understand that a solar panel is constantly producing electricity when exposed to the sun and this can present an electrocution hazard to those conducting roof maintenance. Ensure you use high quality micro inverters and optimisers that will properly shutdown the flow of electricity within the solar panel in order to reduce the electrical hazard. To be sure you’ve selected the right equipment for your solar system, conduct a thorough research on micro inverters/power optimisers and the best-rated solar panels in the market.

MAINTAINING YOUR SOLAR PANEL

It’s of great importance to regularly maintain and protect your solar panels after installation. Failure to do so can lead to expensive repairs and sloppy operation. The good thing is that solar panels require little maintenance since there are no moving parts involved. Once the cost of installing the solar panels have been taken care of, the cost associated with maintenance is not much. However, these solar systems are exposed to weather conditions such as wind, rainfall and snow which can cause a pull or damage to the wiring and fasteners. It’s important that the panels are kept clean from anything that will prevent them from efficiently absorbing the sun. Routine inspection and maintenance should be carried out at least twice a year and repairs should be made if needed. 

You will need to hire a qualified electrician that deals with residential electrical maintenance to ensure your home electrical wiring is  properly insulated and waterproof. 

WRAPPING UP

The benefits derived from installing solar panels is one you shouldn’t ignore. With the right budgeting, choosing the right equipment and taking the time to protect your investment in solar energy, you can be sure of creating a brighter future for your environment and even more energy cost savings.  

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