In order to have continuous power when the utility company is offline, you must have storage capacity in either Batteries or via an onsite Generator. Solar is disconnected as a safety feature during a power outage. For most people this is a rare occasion. Battery Primary or Combination systems carry an added cost of the battery pack and additional inverters and chargers.
Will I have power during a utility outage?
Does a Grid Tied System work at night or during low sunlight hours?
Grid Tie Systems use generated power from the Sun throughout the Day and sell back excess power generated. At night, power is purchased from the Utility Company. Your home will have continuous power from both sources as long as the system senses power from the Utility Grid. If the grid loses power the system will shut down so it doesn’t send power back into de-energized utility lines. This is a safety requirement for all grid-tie systems.
What about hail damage?
Solar panels are pretty resiliant. The glass is tempered and can withstand a lot of force. We have seen panels fare better than the roofs they’re installed on.
What about incentives for Solar and Wind Energy Systems?
There are a number of incentives available for solar and Wind systems besides the 30% federal tax credit. As of June 2013 Oncor still has incentive money left in both commercial and residential programs. Levels vary but are generally $1.20 to $1.50 per DC Watt installed. This incentive only applies to Solar. See Grant and Incentives under Customer Resources for more current information.
What is the cost?
Solar Home Power systems range in price based on Kilowatts of Solar Needed to offset Energy usage. We can determine your package by looking at your current utility usage. Other factors determining Solar System sizing would relate to how energy efficient your home or business is. Square Footage is not a measurement related to the size of a solar system. Prices for Grid-tied Home Power Systems are in the range of $4 to $6 a DC Watt before incentives and tax credits. Typical sizes for homes range from 2000 Watts to 20,000 Watts. Pricing can be finalized once our Solar Specialist is able to determine all the cost factors related to your particular needs.
There is a great web site that will calculate the size, productivity, investment and return of a wind or solar system. You can find it in the “Links” section of our website or simply click here: http://estimator.solar-estimate.org/