Is Solar Power Right For Your Home?

By Neal  on 04/18/2012 23:22 UTC

Solar has become a major buzz word of sorts these days. Many people are talking about solar power, many solar installations are going up, nationwide, statewide, down the street, and maybe even next door to you.

Determining whether or not a solar electric installation would be appropriate for your home can be very straightforward, but occasionally complicated.

There are a number of factors to look at for a residential solar application and these can include your overall lifestyle, the size of your electric bill, the orientation and energy efficiency of your home. Here we’ll cover a few simple basic identifiers of how well home solar panels would benefit you.

Home Orientation Solar Installation Factor

Solar can be installed in any direction but north.

compass for home orientation solar installation factorCommonly, people assume that homes must have a south-facing orientation, but both east and west facing roof spaces can be utilized.

Because we are in Arizona and have an abundance (possibly an overabundance depending on whom you ask) of sunshine, the difference in output among the various orientations is greatly reduced compared to a place like say, New Jersey or Seattle.

South is going to give the greatest production, followed by a western orientation, and then lastly, eastern orientation.

North can never be utilized for home solar panel installation, but if that is your only possible option, there are mounting systems utilized to get around this obstacle.

Lifestyle Factor For Solar Installation

Are you a permanent year-round resident of Arizona or a Snowbird that spends 6 months or less in our great state?

For those who are part-timers, your system can be sized significantly smaller than that of someone who is a full-time resident and still can allow you to eliminate most of your electric bill as your reduced sized system will be generating energy credits from your utility provider during those slightly warm months that you spend off in a far cooler climate.

Cost of Electricity

Solar is not for everyone. Generally the bigger your electric bill gets, the more sense a residential solar installation will make for you. Based on your energy-use profile, a solar electric system starts making sense at about $90 a month average and the numbers continue to look better the higher your bill goes. For those who are routinely paying $250 a month or more on average, there are incredible savings that can be attained, even through a zero-down solar lease which requires no initial investment.

Home Energy Efficiency Plays A Role In Choosing Solar

The overall efficiency of your home is something else to consider when looking at the feasibility of installing a solar electric system.

Those 30-year windows that hold out nothing but wild animals … when you change those out, there will be a noticeable decrease in your cost of electricity. The same applies to changing out your creaking and groaning air-conditioner unit on its last legs, or completing that upgrade of your existing attic insulation that has been settling since the Bee Gee’s were topping the music charts. These are things that should be discussed with your solar energy consultant.

There is no advantage to over-sizing a solar electric system, and upgrades planned in the near future can absolutely be accounted for when putting together a home solar panel quote.

There are a lot of factors that come into play when designing an appropriate home solar panel system and as such, it makes sense to sit down with a Solar Topps professional solar consultant who can help devise a system just the right size for your home and lifestyle.

To find out more about installing a solar power system on your home, you can get a free solar quote by filling out the form after clicking on the “Solar Quote” link found at the top of any page on our site.

Solar Topps is the leading residential solar electric installer in Arizona.

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