As the blizzard batters almost a third of the country, solar energy may not be the first thing on people’s mind. Our customers who install solar energy system in the Midwest are best staying out of harm’s way as the sun is not going to be casting its rays on solar panels in the US today. That is one of the oddities about solar energy: you need the sun to produce electricity. And when it is safe to go outside, probably the homeowners with solar panels on their roofs will be trying to sweep (please don’t shovel) the snow off their solar panels for two very good reasons. As you start digging out from the big storm, start thinking about design your solar energy systems for the spring.
Posts Tagged ‘Solar Energy System’
During this holiday season, you may be reflecting on what we can do in our homes and businesses to go green or put onto our roofs solar home panels. But it doesn’t need to stop there. Why not generate solar energy from our churches and synagogues? This isn’t a new idea; it is just an idea whose time has come. This blog post talks about the efforts of congregations throughout the country that are looking for ways to go green.
The sea change that occurred yesterday in the elections has the solar industry abuzz in speculation and trepidation. There is much analysis and a lot more guess work at play, but the political developments should focus the mind on what can be done. The first clue is what the lame duck Congress will try to do. We already know that cap and trade is a nonstarter, but some remnants of an energy bill may be pushed forward before the new Congress convenes in January. Many solar industry analysts are watching for a particular piece of legislation known as the Treasury Grant program.
You are a plumber, an electrician or possibly a roofer and you increasingly hear from your customers that they are in the market to install a solar energy system to reduce their energy costs. We understand that you want to serve this rapidly expanding solar market, and there is no reason that you shouldn’t. Some of our most loyal customers are contractors who are making the transition to solar energy installations. If you are a quality contractor, you already have many of the requisite skills that are easily transferable to installing solar energy systems. We want to be able to continue to reach out to contractors who are just getting into the field. SolarTown has become a featured solar and green energy resource for plumbers, roofers and electrical contractors.
You live in your desert home and just spent $30,000 for a solar energy system—when all of a sudden a dust storm comes up and layers your panels with a layer of dust, reducing the electricity output by 40%. You are not very happy and are wondering why you wasted your money. Oh, and I forgot to tell you that there is a drought and water is being rationed. Now you are really peeved. Do you simply wait for the next rain—which could be next year. Not to fear, help is on the way. Researchers at Boston University have innovated a solution based on electrodynamic screen (EDS) technology. Using this technology, you can get rid of 95% of the dust within two minutes.
We have had increased interest from those wanting to manage their solar installations. Some of those who have contacted SolarTown are handy around the house and fashion themselves as DIY solar installer. Some are simply taking an active role in managing their solar installations. They are not the type to get on a roof, but they are ready to hire a roofer and electrician. And then there are plumbers or electricians who are making the transition to the solar installation business and need our assistance. All of these folks are people who now make up the SolarTown community. They are interested in working with SolarTown to choose solar energy systems. If you fall within one of these categories, we can help you, too. We have a lot of online resources to assist you. We also have technical customer assistance to guide you through the process of installing your own solar energy system. In this blog entry, we want to demystify the process of how SolarTown can help you succeed with your solar energy project.
Ever since we created the SolarTown community, our customers have complained that the financial burden of going solar was simply too great for them to embark on the journey. Starting today, we are offering our customers some relief: a solar loan program with one year of no payments and no interest. If you are a DIYer, you now have this solar loan program as an option so that you have time to receive your economic incentives and you don’t have to go out and get a home loan or put the entire purchase on your credit card. If you are an installer who has in the past had to advance the cost of the equipment for your customers, you can now have your customer place an order for a solar energy system with SolarTown. You will of course still do the installation—but without having to come out of pocket for the solar energy equipment.
The Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs are a creative and effective approach to financing solar energy systems. Many were looking for a solar financing solution and after a very limited experiment in Berkeley, PACE expanded like wild fire to 23 states. PACE may not be for everyone and there are other choices available, but we hope that legal clouds hanging over PACE are resolved. Legislation has been introduced in the House to save PACE. We hope that his efforts succeed. It is a program that can help a lot of people go solar.
New Jersey has been a leader in solar, but because of tough economic times, the Governor has thrown solar under the bus. The New Jersey governor has diverted some $400 million in clean energy programs to balance the state’s budget. This financing of course puts the solar installer at risk if there are delays in receiving the rebates. What happens when the rebates are in jeopardy? Two words spring to mind: panic and chaos—which is exactly what is happening in New Jersey today. New Jersey has temporarily suspended the solar rebate program and has announced that it will not take any further applications until September. If you are a small installer paying your labor and equipment with the expectation that you will receive the rebates in a timely manner, this announcement must have produced uncertainty at best and panic at worst. This move seems to be pound wise and penny foolish as no doubt the solar installers will have to lay off some of their workers and wait until the rebates become available in September—just as the economy is beginning to recover.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and may be an acquired taste, especially when it comes to solar modules. I was at a solar energy conference last week and one of the other lunch guests at my table referred to the solar panels that you may put on your roof as those “big ugly boxes on your roof.” And this was a conference on solar energy, not a Texas rodeo. It reinforced the notion that there are two major impediments for homeowners to the adoption of home solar panels: finances and beauty.