Do you have questions about Going Solar or the Mass No-Cost Solar Program we offer? Our FAQs are designed to give you an overview of the technology we offer, how our process works, and solutions to questions that may arise after your system is installed. If you don’t see the answer you’re looking for, we’d love to hear from you!
The mass no-cost solar program Grid-tied Solar Electricity offers a way to fix your electricity rate for more than 25 years. The maintenance-free panels come with a 25-year production warranty and the expected useful lifespan is up to 50 years (output starts to slow down over time but is still significant). A grid-tied PV system can protect you from electricity price increases for decades. That’s a feeling of energy security that is hard to duplicate. We also help you take advantage of all the state and federal incentives, resulting in you paying No Out of Pocket Cost for Going Solar.
Simply put with the mass no-cost solar program – the sooner you get solar, the sooner you will enjoy its benefits! If you wait for some unproven technology down the road, you will have missed the opportunity to generate your power now. Solar is like saving for retirement – the sooner you start doing it, the better.
In Northern New England, the ideal roof orientation is 196 degrees on the compass (known as ‘solar south’), but an installation of +/- 50 degrees (155 -245) is also fine. Within this range, power output stays within seven or eight percent of maximum. Even more easterly and westerly roof installations are viable, especially on shallower roofs. For example, a 7/12 roof that is due east or due west still achieves 77% of a system’s potential performance. More important than angle, generally, is shading. We don’t want to see any shading on a solar roof from 9 am to 3 pm, year-round. Technological improvements such as micro-inverters can compensate for shading issues to some extent. The best way to know for certain if your roof is viable for solar is to contact us for a free solar evaluation.
We mount solar panels on a purpose-built aluminum rail system that is fastened about every four feet by penetrations into roof rafters. On a standing seam metal roof, these attachments are made directly to the standing seams, with no roof penetrations. On asphalt roofs, each mount is sealed with a 50-year Tripolymer sealant to prevent any leaks. We guarantee all roof work will be free from leaks. As for the weight of the array, it is less than 5 pounds per square foot, so a typically framed roof is more than adequate to carry the weight.
Every kilowatt of the solar array takes about 75 square feet. So a typical 3kW array (twelve panels) will take a roof area about 11′ tall by 20′ wide (two rows of six).
That varies from home to home (or business to business) based on energy usage, solar exposure, and the size of the building, alongside a few other factors. For a very quick estimate of your particular need, check out our Solar Calculator. For a more exact estimate, follow that up with a chat with one of our System Design Specialists.
As people have converted more aspects of their life to solar (e.g. running heating, cooling, and electric cars) the number of panels we install in the typical system has increased as well. In 2019, the average # of panels installed for residential systems was 27.
Today nearly all inverters come with built-in monitoring that varies based on manufacturer. By reconciling your production with your electric bill, you can get a good idea what your household’s electric load is and how much of a difference the photovoltaic system is making
Solar energy systems are sophisticated pieces of equipment and not suitable for DIY type projects. With grid-tied solar electric, you need to contract with a professional company to meet most state rebate program requirements, as well as to perform the interconnection with the utility. With solar hot water, while you can do the plumbing yourself, the cost and risk associated with a poor installation greatly outweigh the cost of hiring a professional.
It will be a lot less! With solar, your inverter and your household loads are all “behind the meter,” meaning that if the sun is out and you are in your house and running loads – say a TV, dryer, and electric stove – your solar-generated power will be consumed without it ever being registered by the utility company. So at the end of the month, your electric bill will say you’ve exported fewer kWh to the grid than your inverter says you have generated. This is because your home consumed some solar power before it was ever sold to the utility. Though it can be a bit confusing, you can feel good about this situation because every kWh you didn’t export, is also a kWh you didn’t have to buy! That’s putting your photovoltaic system to work.
Snow and ice are a reality of installing solar arrays in the Northeast and we design our systems to withstand the toughest weather we get. The reality is, after a snowstorm, your solar panels will be covered in snow. Don’t panic! Usually they ‘self-clear’ quite well 1 to 3 hours after the sun is up. On an annual basis, the amount of energy production loss due to snow is fairly minor.
Solar electricity is identical to grid power, so you will never notice that the house is running on solar power. What you will see, of course, is a smaller electric bill!
When the grid power goes down, the grid-tied solar electric system goes down, too. This is to prevent any accidental back-feeding of solar electricity to the grid which might endanger line workers. However, a new generation of battery backup technology is available, providing clean backup power in event of a power outage. mass no-cost solar faqs
1. I have a National Grid, Eversource, or Unitel electric bill
2. I own the house I want to get solar on or represent the owner
3. I want to save approximately 60% to 80% on my electric bill
4. I want to do my part in Keeping Massachusetts Green