The best way to determine if solar is right for you is to consult an energy specialist that can help you assess your needs, and whether those needs can be met with the help of a solar system.
If a solar system isn't in the plan right now, check out these tips from Hawai'i Energy on how you can save energy and money in the meantime.
In general, it's good practice to make your home as energy efficient as possible, and one of the best ways to begin is with solar water heating, especially if you don't have any solar on your home. Unlike your electric heater, a solar water heating system harnesses and uses the sun's heat so that your heater uses less electricity altogether. By switching to a solar water heater, you can save up to 40% per year on your on electric bill alone. Learn more about how solar water heating works, and how it can help you become energy efficient.
Yes. The main difference between solar hot water and solar photovoltaic is how the panels use the sun.
Solar water panels use direct heat from the sun together with heat exchange in order to create hot water, not energy. For example, cool water from the tank is pumped into the solar panels on your roof, which then use the sun to heat the water. Once the water reaches a certain temperature, the system then pushes that hot water back down into the tank, and begins the cycle again.
Unlike solar water panels, solar photovoltaic panels use the sunlight in order to create energy. Energy from the sun is absorbed by cells within the photovoltaic panel, creating an electrical DC current.
Yes! There are different options for adding solar to your home if you already have a system. The best option, however, comes down to what HECO program your existing system is under. For example, if you're a Net Energy Metering (NEM) customer, your options would be either the Net Energy Metering Plus (NEM Plus) program, or HECO's Battery Bonus (SDP) program. If your system is under a Customer Grid Supply (CGS), Customer Grid-Supply Plus (CGS Plus), or even a Customer Self-Supply (CSS) program, then your best option might be to file a DER Amendment to your existing Agreement, and add under your existing program. A solar contractor can best help you determine which route to take.
With routine maintenance and care, a solar system can last anywhere from 20-30 years. When it comes to solar photovoltaic systems in particular, however, you will see a decline in power output performance as the system ages. This is a normal process and is wear and tear from the exposure of these panels and their solar cells to UV rays over time.
Routine maintenance is key to ensuring your system lasts. Here is what Solar Services Hawaii recommends:
To find out more about maintenance services for your solar system, please contact our office at (808) 721-3585 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
While the southernmost facing roof is ideal for solar installations, there are some cases where that's just not an option. In situations like this, there are methods solar installers can use, such as tilted racking, to ensure a maximized efficiency of your solar system. Another option, would be to add more panels to the system to compensate for any loses due to undesirable orientation.
For most systems, an average installation takes anywhere from one to two days. In cases that are more difficult, or the system is larger than the average size, installation can take up to several days.
A solar attic exhaust fan allows heat to escape from your attic, thus helping to cool the home. These systems are completely stand-alone as they are powered by the sun, and are essentially maintenance free.