Frequently Asked Questions
Common Questions Answered Here
- Should I buy or lease? It depends on your situation. Ownership is most beneficial, but both have benefits. Click here to download our Solar101 eBook that explains the details.
- Do I need the regular source of power also in addition to solar?
YES! Solar PV is “grid-tied” and is designed to shut off when grid power goes out. This is done to prevent sending electricity back to power lines during outages which could hurt line-workers. (see storing.energy for other options.)
- What happens if I relocate?
If you own the system, it stays with the property and any incentive income yet to be earned is negotiated a part of the sale.If you lease the system, the lease and the system stays with the property. It may need to be paid off early or the new owner must assume the contract and debt.
- How do I pay for the system? You can pay up front, or you can finance the system. There are many finance options. Home Equity Loans are the most popular, but MA has a good program called MassSolarLoan.
- When is the Federal Income Tax benefit going to end?
- Residential: Take a Federal Income Tax CREDIT of 30% of the Solar System purchase until 2021.
- Commercial: Take a Federal Income Tax CREDIT on the Solar System purchase by table below:
- 2017 30%
- 2018 30%
- 2019 30%
- 2020 26%
- 2021 22%
- 2022 10% continuing at 10%
- What is the warranty period and what is covered?The components are covered by manufacture warranties that range from 10-25 years.Workmanship is covered for 5 years.
- Will my Solar Energy work when the power goes out? NO! The system is designed to shut down in the event of a power failure to protect line-workers.
- Where are the inverters located? The inverters & metering equipment can be installed inside or outside. We custom locate the system for each property.
- How is the wiring done? By professional electricians according to the most recent accepted national building, electrical and fire codes.
- If I have a battery system, how long the power will last if there is no sunshine for 2 days? That depends on the draw on the battery. We often install a manual transfer switch to a fuel generator for those “just-in-case” situations.
- What maintenance is needed? Very little. The modules and the wiring need no maintenance. The inverter needs to update software and may need replacement. We budget and plan on an inverter replacement in year 21.
- How does solar power work at night or when I’m not home? It does not. You get power from “the Grid”.
- How long do solar panels last? Longer than 25 years. They age and produce less power every year, so at some point it makes financial sense to replace them while still functioning.
- What is a REC? A “REC” is a Renewable Energy Credit. Some states also have SRECs that are specific to Solar Renewable Energy Credits. The REC system is a state policy that requires energy companies & some other entities to invest in renewable energy. That investment can be offset by purchasing REC credits. REC credits are based on system production. A renewable energy power plant generates RECs for electricity produced regardless of who uses the electricity. The RECs produced are sold to energy companies through an Aggregator.