Category Archives for "Solar Basics"

How Big and Expensive Is a 6 kW Solar System?

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How big is a 6 kW solar system exactly and what does it cost?

Solar installations can be very small such as 2 kW (kilowatt) installations composed of just 8 panels, or they can be large 25 kW systems with over 100 panels! This large playing field for installation size might make a 6 kW solar system look fairly small, but in all actuality it’s very close to the size of a vast majority of residential solar installations.

So what does 6 kW mean and, just as importantly, how much does it cost? Read on to find out!Continue reading

Why Backyard Solar Panels Are More Expensive

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If your roof is not pitch perfect for solar panels, what do you need to consider regarding backyard solar panels?

Considering installing solar panels and weighing up rooftop versus backyard solar panels?

In this article, we’re going to guide you by the hand through what you need to know, and all the areas where your installer might sneak in a few extra cents.

First, we’ll explain why backyard solar panels are more expensive than rooftop panels, and then we’ll look at additional costs to watch out for when making the solar switch.Continue reading

What are the Benefits of Solar Energy?

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Taking a societal look at the benefits of solar energy.

As you can probably imagine, there are many benefits of solar energy. We’ve written about the benefits and drawbacks of solar before in our October 2016 Solar Energy Pros and Cons – Top 10, but in that article we mostly focused on issues important to homeowners going solar – solar panel efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and the high upfront cost of solar panels.

Today, let’s take a step back and look at the benefits of solar energy on a much wider scale. We’ll delve into how solar can benefit a nation or society’s economy while increasing energy independence and financial security.Continue reading

How to Install Solar Panels on a Rooftop

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When anchoring solar panels onto your rooftop, installers have two main objectives.

First is to ensure that all the panels are safely and securely attached to the roof. You don’t want them flying off at the first breeze!

Second, ensure that all connections to the roof are (and remain) leak-free. To this end, rubber gaskets, flashing, and sealant are all used in abundance, along with good engineering practices so the installation affects the roof as little as possible.Continue reading

How Big and Expensive is a 15kW Solar System?

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Find out how much you can save by installing a 15kW solar system

You’ve done some math or maybe you’ve talked to an installer and found that a 15kW solar system installation will cover your electricity needs quite nicely. Great!

But there is one problem. You’re scratching your head, wondering what exactly does 15 kW mean? And even more importantly, how big and expensive is a 15 kW solar system?Continue reading

How to Get Solar Power Without Batteries

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Installing solar power without batteries

How do you store the energy, anyway?

If you’re interested in purchasing a new solar system, then you likely have a lot of questions about how the system works and what you will need to suit your individual needs. One question that comes up often is whether or not a solar system needs a battery and how to get solar power without batteries. It’s really a trick question because although most systems don’t use batteries at all, but use the electrical grid as a sort of flexible battery storage and on demand power system. If this makes no sense, that’s fine, because we’re going to explain!

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Can You Put Solar Panels on a Flat Roof?

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Residential solar panels are commonly seen installed on pitched roofing. But can you put solar panels on a flat roof?

I’m happy to report that yes, you can indeed put solar panels on a flat roof! In fact, if you own a home with a flat roof and you’re considering getting solar power installed, then you’re in an enviable position. Though there are some trade-offs to contend with, in general, having a flat roof gives you a number of advantages over your pitched-roof peers.Continue reading

What are the Primary Types of Solar Power?

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What do we mean when we talk about the different types of solar power?

After all, all solar power comes from the sun, what else is there?

When we discuss types of solar power, what we’re really talking about is the different methods of harvesting and using the sun’s energy. With solar power, we can warm a room so we’re nice and cozy, heat water for our showers and baths, create electricity or even cook food! Today we’re going to focus on ways to create or harvest energy using solar power.Continue reading

How Big and Expensive Is a 12 kW Solar System?

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Interested in installing a 12 kW Solar System, but not quite sure what 12 kW actually means?

First things first, kilowatts (kW) is a measure of an installation’s size. Basically, kW is a measure of how much electricity the solar installation can produce in a single instant. The average residential solar installation in the US is 5.6 kW, so a 12 kW solar system is over 2x bigger than the national average! However, 12 kW is by no means the biggest solar system homeowners install (check out our article on 20 kW to read about even bigger solar installations!).

Take a look below to see how big a 12 kW installation really is, what it can power, and how much it costs!Continue reading

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