Category Archives: Solar 101

Articles all about solar, from common questions to overviews of different aspects of a solar energy installation.

Sun Number

Sun Score: what you need to know about your property’s Sun Number

If you’ve shopped for solar before, you may have come across something known as “Sun Number” or sun score. Like EnergySage, Sun Number received funding from the Department of Energy’s SunShot initiative to innovate in the solar energy space. Read on to learn more about how a property’s Sun Number is calculated and what your sun score means for going solar.

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residential solar panels

Expert guide to solar panels for homes

Over the past decade, home rooftop solar use has exploded around the country as Over the past decade, rooftop solar use has exploded around the country as a very popular investment strategy. Homes and businesses across the country are transitioning away from a fossil-fueled electricity grid towards a clean energy economy, driven by a need to reduce emissions in a time of global climate change. Amidst this period of energy reform, rooftop solar panel systems are becoming more and more popular. It’s time to give residential solar the credit it deserves.

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solar panel output energy production

Solar panel output: How much energy does a solar panel produce?

Most solar panels on the market in 2022 produce between 250 and 400 watts of power. You might come across these solar panel output numbers from your solar installation quote, which will typically include “245W”, “300W”, or “345W” next to the name of the panel. They are all referring to a solar panel’s wattage, capacity and power output.

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solar cells

How do photovoltaic cells work?

You’ve probably seen solar panels on rooftops all around your neighborhood, but do you know how they actually work to generate electricity? In this article, we’ll take a look at photovoltaic solar cells, or solar cells, which are electronic devices that generate electricity when exposed to photons, or particles of light—this conversion is called the photovoltaic effect. In this article, we’ll explain how PV cells work. Specifically, we’ll examine the science of silicon solar cells, the solar cells making up the vast majority of solar panels.

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monocrystalline vs polycrystalline solar panels

Monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels: which is the best for you?

When you evaluate solar panels for your photovoltaic (PV) system, you will encounter two main categories of panel options: monocrystalline solar panels (mono) and polycrystalline solar panels (poly). Both types of panels produce energy from the sun, but there are some key differences to be aware of.

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solar panel orientation and angle

What’s the best direction and angle for my solar panels?

Many people are under the misconception that they can’t install solar panels on their roof for a variety of reasons, whether because of the material, their location, shade, or the dimensions of their roof. There are many factors that make a roof more or less suitable for solar, but while some roof qualities make a rooftop solar system installation difficult, others have a minimal impact on solar energy production.

In this article, we’ll review the two main roof factors that impact the performance of solar panels: direction and angle.

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Green Banks

What are green banks?

We continue to get closer to achieving net neutrality thanks to local, state, and federal climate policies and goals. Generous rebate and incentive programs lower the financial burden to develop and implement clean technologies, but oftentimes consumers and green organizations still rely on private loans, investments, and financial backing. However, lending and investing in new technology from a young industry doesn’t come without its perceived risks, so, it can be difficult to obtain funds from traditional lenders to upgrade to green technology. 

This is where green banks can come in – they’re specialized lenders created to address gaps in traditional lending, helping accelerate investments in clean energy. In this article, we explain what green banks are and the benefits of working with them.

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floating solar panels

Floating solar: what you need to know

Not every roof is suitable for solar panels – factors such as shade, obstructions, age, and available space can have property owners looking for other locations for installation. When it comes to large-scale solar projects, the most common alternatives to rooftop solar panel systems include ground mounts or solar canopies. Here’s a newer alternative that’s making quite the splash in the solar industry: floating solar.

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best solar incentives

What are the best solar incentives?

The solar industry in the United States is big, and only getting bigger. In the last ten years, solar system installations increased by 20,000 percent! It’s very likely that you know someone (or multiple people) who have installed solar, or are considering it. You might find yourself wondering – how can everyone afford to go solar? That’s a great question, and cost is a major consideration for most people when they’re making a big investment in something like solar.

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