When researching solar for your home, one of the first questions that might come to mind is whether or not your house is actually suitable for solar in the first place. After all, going solar is a big investment that, if done right, can have a significant pay off over the course of a few years. As such, researching how your home and energy usage aligns with solar can be a time and money-saving endeavor.
There are a number of factors that go into determining how good of a fit your home is for solar panels, all of which can greatly affect the ROI on your solar investment. Below are the top three questions we ask first to gauge a home’s solar suitability.
1. How much is your energy bill?
This is one of the most important factors in determining your solar suitability. Since the projected savings with a solar energy system is usually the main factor that goes into the consideration process, knowing upfront your potential savings is key to assessing if solar is right for your home. The number of panels you need to purchase is directly tied to the size of your bill, and how much you want to reduce it.
2. Is your roof at the end of its lifespan?
If your roof is on the tail end of its life, it’s a good idea to have it replaced before solar is installed. Since solar panels have a lifespan between 20-30 years, it’ll payoff to have a new, healthy roof supporting them from below. Removing and reinstalling panels for a roof repair or replacement can be costly, so being aware of your roof’s health at the beginning of this process will pay off in the long run. Keep in mind that solar tax incentives can typically be applied to a roof repair or replacement so long as it’s done in conjunction with the solar installation.
3. How much sun exposure does your roof receive?
Knowing how much sunlight hits your roof will help you determine panel count and projected savings. The more direct sunlight your roof receives, the more energy your panels will produce. In Arizona, a south facing roof is generally considered ideal, although west facing can also be productive, depending on when your family uses the most electricity. It is always best to avoid shade. While panels still produce energy in shaded or cloudy conditions, most reputable solar integrators will suggest alterations in panel configuration or landscaping to avoid excess shading.
If you’ve been thinking about making the switch to solar, now is the time to act! We invite you to contact one of our solar experts for a custom solar quote. If you aren't quite ready for a quote, you can download our complimentary whitepaper: Is Solar Right for You?