Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

FAQ Categories: PV Solar Systems    Water Heater Systems    Pool Heater Systems    Energy Questions      

PV Solar Systems

Water Heater Systems

Pool Heater Systems

Energy Questions

PV Solar Systems
How do solar photovoltaic cells work?
In layperson terms, photovoltaic cells are comprised of semiconductor materials such as silicon. Added to the silicon are the elements phosphorous and boron which create conductivity within the cell and activate the movement of electrons. The electrons move across the cell when activated by the sunlight's energy into the electrical circuit hooked up to the solar panel.
Back to Top
How does a photovoltaic solar system work?
Photovoltaic panels are mounted in a location where they will collect an optimum amount of sunlight (usually south-facing) throughout the day. Sunlight hits the panels and frees electrons which produce electricity. This power is transferred from those panels into your home, eliminating the need to buy electricity from the power company.
Back to Top
What is a solar concentrator?
Solar concentrators use mirrors and tracking systems to direct even more sunlight to the solar panel, thereby creating even more energy. Like using a magnifying glass on a sunny day, more of the sun's rays are collected in one area. In addition, tracking systems turn the modules to follow the sun throughout the day. This allows the panels to make even more power than a traditional PV module can. Currently, solar concentrators are not approved for our wind standards in most Florida counties.
Back to Top
Do I need battery backup for my solar panels?
Probably not. A backup battery bank can add as much as 25% in cost to a residential solar PV system. It's not necessarily more efficient either. A same-sized solar array will yield about 7-10% less energy if it is battery-tied rather than grid-tied.
Back to Top
How many panels do I need?
That depends upon the amount of energy you want to produce and the size of your roof and the wattage rating of the modules used in your arrray. Your solar installer will work with you to determine the number of panels that will optimize the space you have and the amount of power your household needs.
Back to Top
Can PV panels be placed on a barrel-tile roof?
Yes, absolutely, although it takes a little more time and work. Installers will be absolutely certain as with all installations that there is no leakage and that the grid system is fastened to withstand 150 mph winds.
Back to Top
What if my roof is too small?
No problem! Solar modules are manufactured at many different ratings allowing for the optimum use of limited space. Solar arrays may be mounted on the ground if there are limitations with roofing and space is available on the ground. Our project manager will be able to help you with this during a free site survey.
Back to Top
What happens if a hurricane comes through my area?
Solar power installations must comply with all local building code requirements. A solar installation is rated to withstand winds up to 150 mph. Most likely, your roof will blow off your house before the solar system will.
Back to Top
What if I don't have a good south-facing roof?
Solar PV modules are very effective when located on a roof facing an easterly or westerly direction as well as a south-facing roof.
Back to Top
Do I need a battery back-up for my solar energy system?
Some people want a battery back-up for their solar energy system, but batteries are often hard to maintain and can be quite expensive. Many find that simply buying a generator gives them the security they need for power outages. Others simple wait for the power to come back on after a storm or outage.
Back to Top
What if my neighbor's trees shade my roof so that the sun cannot reach my solar panels for large parts of the day?
Florida laws are very favorable toward maximizing efficiency for solar collectors. You probably won't remain on friendly terms with your neighbor if you force him to cut down the trees that shade your solar panels (and the law would be on your side to do so), so suggest first that he might want to see if trimming them back would do the trick.
Back to Top
What if my homeowner's association prohibits the installation of solar modules on my roof?
It is against the law for a homeowner's association to prohibit anyone from placing a solar energy system on his roof. They may, however, specify where said system will be installed as long as it still obtains a maximum of solar exposure. For example, if all things are equal, it might specify that your solar system be placed on the back of your home on the east-facing roof rather than the front west-facing roof since the amount of exposure to the sun would be relatively equal. According to the law, it could not require you to place it on the north-facing roof rather than the one facing the south since the amount of sunlight reaching it would be greatly reduced.
Back to Top
 
Water Heater Systems
Why do I need a separate solar water heating system on my home?
After heating and cooling, a homeowner's biggest power expenditure is for hot water. Up to 30% of a home's electricity is used to heat water to a certain temperature and maintain it there throughout the day and night. By simply buying and installing a solar water heater, the homeowner will realize immediate savings.
Back to Top
What is the difference between an open and closed system?
An open system literally runs your home's water through the solar system to collect heat during the sunlight hours. A closed system uses propolyne glycol within the system to circulate from the roof to the water tank and back again, collecting heat and transferring it to the water in the tank. Closed systems are often installed in areas where freezing is a problem.
Back to Top
How hot does the water in the system get?
Most installations will require an anti-scald valve to reduce the temperature of your household water to between 120 and 140 degrees. Due to the high efficiency of the solar collector on the roof, temperatures exceeding 180 degrees are possible. In the event that your water is not hot enough, your regular water heating system will make sure that your water is hot enough for your use.
Back to Top
 
Pool Heater Systems
How can I save pool energy costs in addition to installing a solar pool heating system?
Good question! Did you know that running your pool pump eight hours a day adds about $40 per month to your electric bill? Installing a couple of solar panels to provide electricity to your pump will offset this cost.
Back to Top
 
Energy Questions
What is solar energy?
Solar energy takes advantage of the sun's rays to generate heat or electricity. It is an infinitely renewable resource and unique for its ability to generate energy in a quiet, clean, and consistent manner.
Back to Top
Will I need a building permit to install a solar energy system to my home?
Yes. You'll need to obtain building permits to install a solar energy system of any kind. Building, electrical, and plumbing codes also apply. Residential solar power systems do not use "radical" bilding techniques, and most jurisdictions have building codes that fully embrace solar energy technology. Solar professionals will roll the price for permits into their cost estimate.
Back to Top
How much maintenance do solar energy panels require?
Solar photovoltaic panels require little maintenance -- no need to wash or dust. It is, however, important to place panels where they will remain clear of shade and debris. Thus, you will have to wipe them off if too much snow or leaves fall on them. Solar hot water collection arrays don't need much attention either. It does help to peridically use a window wash brush, biodegradable soap, and water to clean the tubes.
Back to Top
Can I use a financing system?
Yes. Consider using a home equity loan for the purchase and installation costs of a solar energy system to take full advantage of tax deductions. Solar energy systems are viewed as a major home energy savings upgrade, and there are financial tools out there that reward you for your efforts. Remember, installing a solar energy system is comparable to any other upgrade you might do to your home, such as installing a new deck or remodeling a kitchen.
Back to Top
What can I do to reduce energy costs in my home besides installing a solar energy system?
Turn the thermostat in your hot water tank to 120 degrees. Start using energy-saving settings on your appliances; replace older appliances with EnergyStar appliances. Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact flourescents (CFLs). Clean or replace filters on air conditioners and heat pumps regularly. This is a good way to start!
Back to Top
How can I save on hot water usage?
Showers account for an average of 37% of the hot water used in homes. Purchase low-flow showerheads and faucets for your home and take shorter showers. Repair leaky faucets. Take showers rather than baths. You use 15-25 gallons of water for a bath and less than 10 gallons for a five-minute shower.
Back to Top
Why don't more people use wind energy here in Florida?
Florida's conditions are much more conducive to creating power through solar installations rather than windmills. The reason is simple. Year-round, we have much more sunlight on a steady basis than we have wind. While a wind generator will produce electricity here, you will generally create much more with a solar energy system.
Back to Top
What is a carbon footprint?
A carbon footprint is the measure of the amount of carbon dioxide that goes into the atmosphere as you go about your daily life. People who are take measures to cut their energy usage doing things such as driving a hybrid car, using EnergyStar appliances, and turning off lights they are not using create a smaller carbon footprint than those who do not worry about such things. Since carbon dioxide is the man-made global warming greenhouse gas, reducing the amount we produce will have important implications for us now and in the future.
Back to Top
Home | About US | Solar Water Heating | Residential | Commercial | FAQs | Energy Efficient Products
Greenskysolar.biz, Inc.; Venice, FL 34293 |      Phone 941-493-5669|      info@greenskysolar.biz
- discover more information about ICM Consulting and Media Corporation at their social profiles!
Website creation by Software Outsourcing Inc., mobile device compatibility checked by Softeq Mobile Development. Promotion by SEO Canada Inc.