There are several benefits to having a solar power system in your home, for instance, it is an easy way to cut out those electricity bills while having a positive impact on the environment. If you are considering installing a solar power system then there are few steps you need to take before you can get the ball rolling.
Here are 6 ways to prepare your home before installing a solar power system.
1. Research Your Options
The first thing you will need to do is spend some time researching your options. Due to solar power’s rising popularity, you’ll find that there are more installers, contractors, and manufacturers to choose from. Thankfully for you, this means there are lower prices and more affordable options too. There is a lot to research when thinking about your options, for instance, you need to consider the scope, costs, panel manufacturers, materials, certified installers, optimal placement sites, and power distribution too. It sounds like a lot but once you start getting diving into the information it will all come to you quite quickly. At this stage, it is important that you take the time to research thoroughly and also to check out reviews. Going through reviews is a must for anyone who wants to solar power their home as reviews can point you in the right direction and steer you away from any subpar options, which will save you a lot of money in the long run.
2. Choose Where You Want Your Solar System To Go
The next thing you need to do is consider where you want to install your solar system. While this might seem quite obvious, there is more to consider than you might expect when it comes to installation. You should place your panels in a spot that gets maximum exposure to the sun as this will increase the efficacy of your system. There is no point in spending a tonne of money to install panels that end up getting hidden behind a tree. So be sure to scope the area around where you intend to place your panels before installation so you don’t get any nasty surprises later on. If you are planning on placing your panels on the roof then think about where the sun rays are coming from, for instance, if you are in the northern hemisphere then you would place the panels on south-facing roofs for maximum efficiency. If you think that your roof is unlikely to be able to hold the weight of solar panels then it might be worth contacting a solar panel installer, such as ArtisanElectricInc.com, and see where they suggest you place the panels instead. It is a good idea generally to get a solar installer/ contractor to check out your property as they can advise on the best location and design for your home.
3. Plan Your Budget
Once you have finished your research and you have a rough idea of where you want your solar system to go, you should then establish a realistic budget. You will have to be prepared to incur some costs, however, consider it as an investment as you will save a lot of money from significantly reduced electricity bills. Establishing a budget at the start is a good way for you to manage your money and make sure that you are not overspending. Your budget should be flexible to a degree but not so much that you are majorly going over. Also, be sure to reach out to several companies and they will be able to offer you a free quote and then you can make a well-informed choice from there.
4. Make Any Necessary Repairs Before Installation
Before you can begin the installation process you will need to consult with a building inspector to make sure that your roof is safe and secure enough to hold heavy solar panels. Chances are you will have to make a few repairs here and there so make sure that you account for these costs in your planned budget. Making sure your roof is in tip-top condition is important for two reasons, firstly, because it will keep your house safe and secondly, because if you need to make any roof repairs in the future then you will have to go through the ordeal of removing the panels entirely before being able to make the necessary repairs.
5. Decide If You Want Batteries
Another option to help you power your home is to have batteries to give you an extra level of security in case the panels go down. That way you have access to a reduced amount of electricity in case of emergency. While they do add extra security to your home they also come at quite a significant cost and so if you are working with a smaller budget then this might not be the option for you.
6. Be Sure Your Roof Can Take The Weight
This last point is very important and while it sounds obvious, there are people who have made the mistake of not checking that their roof can take the weight. Typically solar panels are estimated to be 2.5 – 2.7lbs per square foot. If you already hired a solar panel installer then they should be able to work out whether or not your roof can hold the system. However, it does not hurt to get a second opinion and so there is benefit in getting a building inspector to evaluate the safety of your roof. If your roof cannot take the weight then it’s probably because it is quite old. In that case, you would need to replace your roof in the next few years anyway so you may as well do it now and install your solar system panels onto your new roof. This will benefit you in the long run as having a solar system on top of your roof actually protects it and increases its longevity.
There are a wealth of benefits that come with using solar power systems for your home and if you are considering making the change then be sure to use these 6 points to help you prepare for a successful installation.