5 Things You Should Ask To Know If Your Home Is Solar-Ready

5 things you should ask to know if your home is solar ready

Statistics show that homeowners in the US on average spend well over a thousand dollars on electricity bills per year. Most of them would just love to have free electricity – something which is quite possible if you have solar panels installed. Before taking the next step, however, there are a few questions you should ask to see if your home is a viable candidate for solar panels.


What Type Of Roof Does Your House Have?


Solar panels are most suitable for a roof made of strong, long-lasting materials like asphalt shingle, standing seam metal, or concrete tile. It can still work for roofing materials like slate tile, wood shake, mortar, or clay – but in that case, you need to get the help of solar professionals with experience in those types of roofs.


Does Your Home Have a Pitched Or Flat Roof?


Solar panels will deliver optimum performance if they are installed on a pitched roof where they are slanted at the right angle to make the most use of available sunlight. It’s not impossible to install them on a flat roof, but in that case, the contractor should use brackets to slant them at an angle of around 30 degrees.


Does Your Region Receive Enough Sunlight?


This is very important. Although solar panels work fine in the majority of climates, they are most effective in those parts of the country that receive large amounts of direct sunlight. This doesn’t mean that you need the same amount of sunlight every day – in the northern parts of the US there’s less sun and shorter days during the winter, but the long summer days will at least partly compensate for that. Don’t confuse sunlight with heat though. Solar panels in fact work as well, if not better, in colder climates.


On a cloudy day, they will not produce their full output though – but that does not mean you won’t benefit from solar at all. Portland and Seattle, both renowned for their cloudy weather, are in fact experiencing a large increase in solar panel installations.


The one case where your home might not be a good candidate for solar panels is if your area gets a lot of snow. This will cover the solar panels and block the sunlight and you might end up without electricity in winter.


Do You Qualify For Government Incentives When Having a Solar System Installed?


This could reduce the cost of installing solar panels by as much as 30%. In 2021 the federal government offered a tax credit of 22% of the cost of installing a solar system. Local and state governments also offer their own incentives in this regard, so depending on which state you live in, you could end up getting a sizeable chunk of the cost refunded by the government.


How Soon Will Your Roof Have To Be Replaced?


If your home was built 30 or 40 years ago and the roof has never been replaced, it might be a good idea to have this attended to before installing solar panels. These panels can easily last around 40 years. But that wouldn’t mean much if your roof has to be replaced halfway through that period. It’s best to install solar panels on a roof that’s in good condition. The good news in this regard is that high-efficiency solar panels might be able to pay for the cost of replacing your current roof within as little as 5 years.


The Bottom Line


Solar panels typically take between 6 and 10 years to pay for themselves. Taking into account that they can last 40 years or more, this means that you will most likely enjoy around 30 years of free electricity. This depends on various factors though, including the cost of the solar panel system, your monthly electricity usage, the amount and quality of sunlight in your area, and the amount of government incentives you qualify for.


Why not make an appointment with your local solar panel installer in Marthas Vinyard, MA, and let them give you some solid advice?








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