Category Archives: Solar 101

What are the most efficient solar panels on the market?

most efficient solar panels on the market energysage

For those looking for the most efficient solar panels for their PV system, the first thing you need to know is how to compare efficiency metrics for different manufacturer brands. Simply put, efficiency (expressed as a percentage) quantifies a solar panel’s ability to convert sunlight into electricity. Given the same amount of sunlight shining for the same duration of time on two solar panels with different efficiency ratings, the more efficient panel will produce more electricity than the less efficient panel. read more

Solar Panel System Design: How Solar Installers Map Out your PV System

solar panel system design

The process of of how solar installers design a solar energy system is often a mystery for most consumers. Because of this, we would like to give you some insight into how solar installers design a solar power system for your home or business. A solar power system is designed considering two important factors – the amount of space that you have available for installing solar panels and the amount of electricity you consume annually. Other factors, like shading analysis and the efficiency of solar panels and inverters also come into play.   read more

How do solar panels work for your home?

how solar panels work

As the cost of solar has plummeted in recent years alongside major improvements in technical efficiencies and manufacturing quality, many homeowners across the U.S. are starting to look at solar as a viable alternative energy solution. And as solar enters mainstream energy markets, the big question is, “how do solar panels work?” In this article we’ll break down exactly how solar panels produce energy for your home and how pragmatic going solar really is in 2017.

Why are solar panels blue?

why are solar panels blue not black

Most solar panels you will see have a blue hue to them, although some panels are black in color. The source of this color difference comes from the way light interacts with two different types of solar panels: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. In this article, we will examine what the color of a solar panel can tell you, and what makes solar panels blue.

Critter guards for solar panels: protect your system from squirrels & birds

solar panel critter guards squirrels birds

A surprising threat to your solar panels may be the animals that live in the area surrounding your home. Birds and squirrels can damage your solar setup in several ways, leading to unwanted repair costs and headache. One solution to solar’s animal problem is to install “critter guards,” a physical barrier between your panels and the local fauna.

Why Consumers Should Get Multiple Quotes for Solar Panel Systems

When shopping for airline tickets or other big-ticket items, people generally shop around. For airline tickets you might compare: How much will it cost? When are the flights? What are the baggage charges? What’s the airline’s safety record? What’s their “on-time” percentage? How much leg-room will there be? Etc. People use a comparison shopping approach because it gives them all the information needed to make the right choice. The same is true when shopping for solar power systems for your home or business. If you take the first offer that comes your way, how will you ever know if you got the right system or the best price or terms for your property?  read more

The Pros and Cons of Solar Energy

pros and cons of solar energy graphic energysage

If you’re considering installing a solar panel system, you’ve probably already had your share of exposure to solar marketing, whether through spammy ads promising free solar panels or a knock at the door signaling an eager solar salesman ready to convince you why you should go solar. To make the right decision for your home, you need to be able to distinguish between the real pros and cons of solar power and the solar myths that are sometimes communicated in the media. 

Compare solar panel prices in Massachusetts: How to get the best deal

compare quotes in massachusetts with energysage graphic

Its a great time for consumers considering installing solar panel systems in Massachusetts.  Solar PV system prices fell over 64% in the past 5 years. It’s figures like this that have analysts from Deutsche Bank reporting that solar is well on its way to beating conventional generation technologies on cost.

In line with this trend, prices for solar panels in Massachusetts are also on the decline. But how can residents of the Bay State make sure that they’re not paying last year’s prices? We’ve identified three things shoppers can do to make sure they get a good deal based on some analysis of price figures from across the state (summarized in the Chart below). read more

What Will a 10,000 Watt (10 kW) Solar System Cost in Your State in 2017?

10kW solar systems EnergySage

10kW solar systems are among the most popular solar energy system sizes in the country, producing enough electricity to power a home with slightly above-average electricity consumption. How much does a 10kW solar system cost? How much electricity will a 10kW solar system produce? How do you know you’re getting the best deal on a system? These are some of the key questions we will answer in this article.

How Much Does a 10kW Solar System Cost?

As of January 2017, the average cost of solar in the U.S. is $3.26 per watt ($32,600 for a 10 kilowatt system). That means that the total cost for a 10kW solar system would be $22,820 after the 30% Federal ITC discount (not factoring in any additional state rebates or incentives). read more