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How to know if solar is a smart investment, before you spend a dime.

Posted by James Bartley on Jul 16, 2019 1:47:24 PM

 

Episode2 How to know if solar is a smart investment before you spend a dime
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Topics: Solar 101 Basics

Finally solar makes sense, but not for long???

Posted by James Bartley on Jul 9, 2019 10:28:00 PM

Prices for solar have come down so much in the last 8 years since our first solar install back in 2011. We are living in a great day and age where competition and technology have both created an ecosystem of ever evolving cheaper and better technology around every corner. We are located in Missouri and I would definitely say that with some of the cheapest power in the USA we are able to see solar benefit the lives of so many Missourians across the state. 

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Topics: Insider

How does solar energy work?

Posted by James Bartley on Jul 8, 2019 11:01:09 PM

Starting from the top down, the Sun rays hit the solar panel exciting electrons and protons to move in what they call direct current or "DC." This DC power then typically heads directly to an inverter which converts the DC power to a more usable AC power just like what your home or business uses. Now of course there are few other components involved to get this DC power to the inverter or microinverters, but once the power is being produced it then consumed by your house and any excess power will then flow back onto the utility grid.

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Topics: Solar 101 Basics

3 Things You Need to Know About Net Metering Solar

Posted by James Bartley on Jul 8, 2019 10:11:19 PM

1. Size and Time allotted for the utility company to take care of your net metering paperwork, In Missouri currently as of 2019, if you are installing a 10kw or less solar system then the utility company has 30 days to complete the pre-approval process. If your solar system is over 10kw DC rating then the utility company can take up to 90 days. after having the utility approval the majority of AHJ's in our area require that approval letter before we are allowed to apply for the permit. The permitting process past that point can be just a few days or a few weeks. 

2. It is important that your solar installer that is submitting the net metering application cross there T's and dot there I's figuratively speaking. Don't give the utility company any reasons to hang up your net metering application because that could potentially get you kicked to the back of the line, and the more applications that you turn in that are perfect the more the utility company begins to trust your companies name. Your solar installer should be focusing on building good relationships with your utility companies to help move things along quicker. 

3. The utility company can actually tell you that your solar system is to large and reduce the system size that you are applying for. In some very rare cases the solar may back-feed enough power on the grid and if you were say on the end of the utility line in the spring and fall months when you may be more prone to producing more than you are using this would be back feeding the grid, this may cause a voltage rise on the utility lines that are out side of the acceptable parameters. We have personally had this happen to us one time and we had to reduce the system size on the application to stay within that particular utility companies guidelines. It is NEVER wise to install a solar system before you have the approval from the utility company for this very reason.

We have dealt with a lot of utility companies over the years and there are definitely a few that are super fast and there are also a few jurisdictions of Liberty that like to utilize the Full 90 days. 

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Topics: Solar 101 Basics

Pros and Cons of String Inverters vs. Microinverters

Posted by James Bartley on Jul 8, 2019 5:54:31 PM

What type of inverter are you going to use on your future solar install? There are three main types of inverters on the market all with there own sets of strengths and weakness's. First the micro-inverter, then the DC optimized system with a central inverter and then the central inverter also known as a string inverter.

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20 Reasons To Go Solar!

Posted by James Bartley on Sep 17, 2018 10:32:00 PM

So, you’re interested in making the switch to solar energy, huh? Good choice!

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Roof Mount Solar Vs. Ground Mount Solar

Posted by Sample HubSpot User on Nov 25, 2017 10:31:00 PM

Each version has its own place where it can only make sense to do one or the other. For most people they do in fact have enough space to do a ground mount system. Lets take a look at the benefits of installing a ground mount if you have the ability to.

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Solar Panels and Hail

Posted by Sample HubSpot User on Nov 17, 2017 10:44:00 PM

Lets start off by mentioning that our oldest system was put in back in 2011 and today almost 2018 we have not had any solar hail damage claims to date. Now we have had to pull the panels off the roof of a hail damaged roof for an insurance re-roof type scenario on two separate occasions, but those panels were not damaged at all. 

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Topics: Solar Panel and Hail, Solar 101 Basics, How do solar panels withstand hail

Solar Panel Maintenance?

Posted by Sample HubSpot User on Nov 17, 2017 10:38:00 PM

Honestly I am sure there is someone out there that is telling you that you need to maintenance your solar pv system for x amount per year. Bla Bla Bla, so I would say to that if you want to waste your money go ahead, but there is no real reason to be concerned with that. Yes dirt and pollen can build up on your panels, but the average rain fall that we get in lower Missouri is enough to keep your panels clean. 

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Topics: Solar Maintenance, Solar PV cleaning, Solar 101 Basics

How much solar does my house need?

Posted by James Bartley on Nov 16, 2017 10:49:00 PM

 The number one question that we are asked, is "how much solar does my 1,500 sq/ft home need?" 

Every home is different, every home is unique, your home may have all gas appliances and heating sources with great insulation, your neighbors home may be from the 1900's with poor insulation and all electric appliances. To combat this diversity in the realm of energy consumption, we approach each home as a unique project.

We start with needing one utility bill that shows the whole year at a glance bar graph, or all 12 months of utility records. This will give us a good idea for your consumption. If you are looking into the future and are going to make any major life changes such as kids going to college, home additions, energy efficiency upgrades, or similar decisions that affect your energy consumption, we take this in to consideration as well.

Once we plug in your data to our software, we are able to size your system appropriately. And like always for the Skywire team, if we can keep it off your roof and on the ground we will recommend this at the same cost or cheaper, ultimately giving you the best ROI.

If you would like to get a good idea for your self on how much solar you need then check out the following website, I will have a follow up post on how to use this website.

http://pvwatts.nrel.gov/

Thanks,

James Bartley

Solar and Generator Division Coordinator

Skywire Solar

Solar and Generator Division Coordinator

Skywire Solar

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