Miscellaneous Solar Panel FAQs for Salt Lake City, Utah, San Antonio, TX, and Reno, Nevada Homeowners
Do they place a lien on your home when you take out a loan for the solar?
No, but if a lien is placed, It’s a lien on the equipment, not the home, and this is only the case If they were to sell their home. So it’s not, in fact, a lien.
Why is the payback 12-15 years? Are there options within the lending that can shorten the terms of the loan? Are there options for different rates of interest?
It totally depends on the specific home for when you’ll see the payback. You’ll have a better idea of timing for payback or years to ROI in concrete terms once you sit down with a solar consultant for a free, no-obligation solar assessment. There are options that can shorten the terms of the loan and of different rates of interest, but these will vary based on credit worthiness.
What is the output per panel?
This depends on the environment and weather. However, Go Solar Group’s solar panels are rated at standard test conditions for 290 watts. If it’s cold and bright, they can put out more than that.
What is Nevada ballot (Initiative #3) and what does it have to do with solar power for Reno homeowners?
Measure 3 is a ballot item that was put out by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation to allow them to deregulate utilities. The long and the short of it is it’s a pretty big fight between two billionaires — Warren Buffett on one side and Sheldon Adelson on the other. Warren Buffett wants to institute a regulated environment with one sole power in arbiter in the region. Sheldon Adelson wants deregulation. With deregulation, rates would decrease as they have in solar. Rates of electricity, if they go up, as they would with Warren Buffett’s goal, solar would be more viable.
Does snowing or raining or overcast lesson the output of the panels?
Snow does. To prevent this, use a roof rake to wipe the panels off.
What are the logistics with battery backup?
Your typical system, when you’re connected to the grid, puts electricity back on to it if the grid goes down. The system shuts off. Our system makes it so you can draw power even when the grid is down. With your standard solar system, the grid goes down, and you’re out of luck. It’s a good thing to disconnect from the grid at times because we don’t want to shock people trying to fix that. We can use our backup options to draw 2000 watts from an outlet when the sun is shining.
How long does the smallest Goal Zero Yeti last versus how long does the Tesla Power wall last?
If you’re running the same thing with both devices, the smallest Yeti (1400) runs for 1.4kwh and the Tesla Powerewall is 13.5 kWh, so it’s about 10x more with the Tesla Powerwall.
Is it illegal in some areas to go completely off-grid?
Yes, but that’s a loaded question. Check with us before you do.
Why can’t we install on mobile homes?
Financing, usage, and credit, and structural element of it. We’ve done a ground mount with a mobile home, but it has to have a foundation. If they can put wheels on it and drive their house away, it doesn’t work.
How much larger would a solar system need to be if they have an electric car they’re wanting to charge utilizing their solar power?
It depends on how many miles you drive. E.g., Tesla is 200-watt hours per mile. So depending on how many miles one drives, he or she needs that much to recharge. A Tesla vehicle can go 310 miles on one charge. It depends on the charger one plugs it into. If it charges it from his outlet in the wall, it gets 5 mph. If it charges it at the supercharger at the Tesla dealership, 200 – 300 mph.
How do they get their money from the federal tax credit?
We do the paperwork, but it’s a tax credit. So you will use it instead of paying their taxes. It’ll just appear as usable income with tax paperwork.
Do NV customers automatically benefit from the solar generations program?
Not automatically, but through us and our relationship with NV Energy. Our competitors do this too, but it takes more labor on their end and we are more efficient at it.
Does the square footage of the home affect the system size at all?
You see correlations between square footage and usage, but there’s not a causal link. It has to do solely with usage, which can generally be gauged by electricity bills.
What makes Axitec panels better than other panels, such as Tesla’s?
Tesla is a phenomenal backup and storage powerhouse in the solar game. However, it isn’t yet viable to use their own panels yet. Go Solar Group’s panel warranty is linear 25 years at 85 percent; nobody else does that versus the traditional 80 percent. The service warranty is 15 years now for the Axitec panels. There are kind of three warranties we offer, technically. There is an installation and labor warranty, which is for 10 years, then there’s a panel and manufacturer warranty that’s 15 years, and finally, there’s a performance warranty that’s 25 years.
Why are solar shingles not viable at this point?
Not only are these solar shingles expensive, but you also lose efficiency every time you have to make a connection with each individual panel, so the efficiency is not up to snuff just yet. So the shingles have to make tons of individual connections and the efficiency degrades, whereas, with Go Solar Group’s panels, we can generate more power more efficiently on a panel-by-panel basis over a longer surface area, making them more absorptive from the sun. It’s done for the whole use and you have to pay for solar shingles on one side of your roof that will not absorb sunlight.
Is it worth it for me to go solar if I don’t have taxable income?
Not really, but this is up to the individual. Essentially, they’d be giving themselves a 30 percent cost increase.
Can I use solar panels for heating my pool?
You would have to run panels dedicated directly to the pool heating equipment. Go Solar Group does not sell solar thermal, which would heat the actual pool water. In general, there are two kinds of panels for pools. Photovoltaic and thermal. Thermal takes hoses and pumps them up on to the roof. Thermal panels are 3 or 4 inches thick and they are for domestic hot water. Thermal panels do qualify for the 30 percent Federal Tax Credit but Go Solar Group does not sell pool PV. We can, however, install enough solar panels on a Reno Nevada or San Antonio, Texas, or Utah home to offset a pool pump, though.
What is required to go off-grid with the Tesla Powerwall, including the linking of multiple Powerwalls?
You need a minimum of three Powerwalls to go off-grid. You would also need to change your consumption habits significantly. If you want to go off-grid without changing your consumption profile, you would need four or more Powerwalls. This does, however, all depend on usage. You can link up to 10 Powerwalls if you would like to do so.
With a 280-watt solar panel, how does this size affect kilowatt-hours (kWh) usage each month?
It varies on weather, time of year, the pitch of the roof and orientation of the panels. Every situation is going to be different.
Is it possible to produce three-phase power from a solar system?
Yes, and Go Solar Group can help! We use smart inverters that match whatever power they see from the grid. This is what makes three-phase power so effective.
What are the technical specifics on how solar A) saves money and B) helps the environment?
Going solar reduces the amount of energy that you buy from the utility company. That’s why buying solar panels is pre-paying for electrical energy. In 1999, if someone had offered to sell you gas for your car for the next 25 years at $1/gallon, you would have saved a lot of money by now. Solar is the same thing – you’re buying energy at a fixed cost now when the price of electricity is only going to go up from here. The less energy you buy from the utility company, the less coal or gas they burn. You lower your demand, they lower their production and you get a better environment.
How do solar power storage and solar battery backup work in relation to net metering?
Storage/Backup work in conjunction with net metering. The only difference between backup and pure net metering is that your solar panels will first fill the batteries with energy, then export excess power to the grid once the batteries are fully charged. This doesn’t happen every day, it only happens when the batteries are depleted for any reason.
What is the difference between SolarEdge and SMA Sunny Boy in terms of function and application?
SolarEdge uses DC optimizers and is a great application for choppy roofs and roofs with potential shading issues. SMA does not use DC optimizers, but you get the Secure Power Supply option – meaning you have a limited amount of energy that you can use from your inverter if the power is out and the sun is shining on your panels.
What is the difference between monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels?
Mono = one type of silicone crystalline. This means better efficiency, and a fewer number of panels, plus better aesthetics. Go Solar Group uses this kind of panel. For an efficiency comparison chart on panel types, visit our solar panel comparison table. Poly = multiple types of silicone. Lower efficiency, more panels needed for the same result as mono, and terrible aesthetics.
When should I consider off-grid solar, and when shouldn’t I consider it?
The only reason to do off-grid solar is when the cost to get the utility connection to the location is more expensive than a large solar system with many batteries and back-up generators.
Should I wait for solar shingles before buying solar panels for my Nevada or Utah home?
If you do wait for them, you will be waiting for another three or four years. And the expenses will likely not drop at that point to where they are manageable for most people who would otherwise go solar with regular rooftop panels. Three to four years also reduces the time value of money and cuts significantly into opportunity cost and, therefore, the amount of money you can ultimately save with rooftop solar. Additionally, the price of solar panels is about ¼ of the cost of solar shingles. Just direct them to the Tesla Solar Shingle website to determine the cost of a solar shingle roof. It’s bonkers!
Why is Go Solar Group different and better from a technical standpoint than its competitors?
There are a few points to consider here. Quality, service, German-engineered products from start to finish, Authorized Tesla Dealer and Installer, the ability to complete the most complex technical jobs for both Nevada and Utah homes and businesses. Please feel to see our customer success stories or read our solar company reviews as well.
How is going solar more affordable now than ever?
You still get a tax credit from Federal and State governments. In Nevada, AB 405 has ensured solar will continue to be a good investment for homeowners and businesses. Additionally, the prices of solar panels have dropped with greater innovation. More and more competition has driven prices lower as well.
What are some best practices for getting the most out of my system?
Utilize provided monitoring of the system, invest in consumption monitoring (usually, only a few hundred dollars on top of system cost).
How do the Goal Zero Yeti and battery backup work with solar systems?
Solar panels are used to charge the back-up portion of the system. And the back-up portion is used to power some loads in the house when the power is out.
How are the panels equipped to deal with snow?/what can people do to optimize production when snow falls?
There are tools called roof rakes that you can buy at the hardware store or online. NEVER clean the panels with water in the heat of the day. Do it early in the morning before the sun comes out. And, for the most part, Utah and Reno, Nevada homeowners should just let Mother Nature do her thing. The models we use to size systems take a lot of historical weather data into the equation. Some years you’ll produce less, some years you’ll produce more. It all evens out over the span of 25 years. To learn more about using solar panels in the wintertime, visit this post.
What are the details on the warranty aspects of the Axitec panels if a golf ball breaks a panel, will Axitec replace it? Are they are warrantied for 25 years at 100 percent production? What would cause a panel to drop below 100 percent?
Go Solar Group uses Axitec, German-engineered solar panels that have a 15-year manufacturer’s warranty. This covers defects in the physical panel itself and does not cover hail damage, breakage from snow, or golf ball damage. The solar panels are guaranteed to produce 90 percent of their nameplate rating after 15 years (industry standard is 85 percent). The solar panels are guaranteed to produce 85 percent of their nameplate rating after 25 years (industry standard is 80 percent). The silicone cells that makeup panels have natural degradation. Each year they lose a little bit of efficiency. Every solar panel degrades.