Did you know that installing solar on your home is more affordable today than ever before? Not only will you save money on your future utility bills, but you’ll take advantage of a variety of economic incentives, and contribute to an energy economy that currently relies heavily on fossil fuels.
As fossil fuels are becoming more expensive due to resource depletion, geographical barriers, and health risks (e.g., nuclear plant leaks, oil drilling catastrophes), solar energy is presenting a more and more viable alternative, and you can be part of this solution!
One of the most efficient ways to harness sunlight is via photovoltaic (PV) cells, either placed on a roof or free-standing over a parking lot or even a field.
Here’s a quick “Solar 101” on how it works:
1. Sunlight hits the PV cells and creates DC (direct current) power.
2. The DC power is then sent to an inverter (generally located on the side of a house) which converts it into AC (alternating current) power, which is what household appliances use.
3. The AC power goes from the inverter to an energy meter (generally on the side of the house). The solar system will either have a separate meter that measures its production, and the electricity is plugged directly into the utility grid, or the electricity will be used in the house itself. In the latter case, when the sun is shining, power from the panels is used to power appliances, and any excess power generated from the panels is sent back to the grid. When that happens, the power meter actually turns backwards. However, at night, when the sun is down and the panels are not producing energy, the house draws energy from the grid (local power company) and the energy meter then spins forwards.