Tag Archives: Solar Leases and Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs)

About solar lease programs, solar lease companies, solar leases vs. PPAs, solar loans

How much energy does a solar panel produce? Electricity output explained

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power output of a solar panel

Power output or wattage is an important factor to consider when comparing solar panel options. You may hear your solar installer say, “it’s a 255 Watt panel” or “the panel I am recommending is has a wattage of 300.” Or, when you are reading a quote from a solar installer, you might see numbers like 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.

How much electricity can a solar panel actually produce?

The amount of available sunlight will vary depending on where you live but for the sake of an example, if you are getting 5 hours of direct sunlight in a sunny state like California you can calculate it this way: 5 hours x 290 watts (a wattage of a premium solar panel) = 1,450 watts or roughly 1.5 kilowatt-hours (kwh). Thus each solar panel in your system would produce a little over 500 kWh of energy per year.

All solar panels are rated by the amount of DC (direct current) power they produce under standard test conditions. Solar panel power output is expressed in units of watts (W), and represents the panel’s theoretical power production under ideal sunlight and temperature conditions. Most home solar panels on the market today have power output ratings ranging from 250 to 400 watts, with higher power ratings generally considered preferable to lower power ratings. Pricing in solar is typically measured in dollars per watt ($/W), and the total wattage of your solar panels plays a significant part in the overall cost of your solar system.
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Are solar panels really worth it?

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is solar worth it?

Every solar company has a variation of the same sales pitch, “did you know going solar can save thousands of dollars?” They make it sound so easy, but the truth is, whether solar is a smart long-term investment for you depends on a few major factors. So before you buy into the hype, we recommend you use this simple guide to cut through the sales jargon and determine if solar panels are actually worth the money.

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How Much Does a 6,000 Watt (6kW) Solar System Cost in 2018?

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6kW solar system EnergySage

If you’ve been looking into going solar, you’ve probably at some point seen quotes for a 6kW solar system. 6kW solar systems are one of the most popular system sizes in the US because in most places they will produce about the right amount of electricity to meet an average household’s daily electrical needs.

Solar leases & PPAs have made going solar accessible for virtually anyone with a roof, but what if you’re thinking about purchasing a system? Since you’ll probably be spending your own money, you’ll want to be extra selective about the installer who does the job and the components that are used.

This article investigates these questions: 1) How much does a 6kW solar system cost, 2) how much electricity will a 6kW system produce, and 3) how do you know you’re getting the best deal? Continue reading

“Free solar panels”: Are they really free?

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If you’ve been shopping around for a solar panel system, you’ve probably heard at least one company advertise ‘free solar panels’ – that they will install a solar system on your roof for free. But, much as with anything, remember that there is no such thing as a free lunch (or a free solar panel).

Free solar panels pure energies

Examples of companies advertising ‘free solar panels’

Decoding the sales pitch: The term ‘free solar panels’ is sometimes used to advertise solar lease or solar power purchase agreements (PPAs).

Under both types of arrangements, a company will put solar panels on your roof for no money up-front, but will charge you for the electricity that they produce.

Most offers will save you money but not all of them, so make sure you’ve thoroughly compared all your options. Also consider buying the solar panels or financing them with a zero-down solar loan.

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Solar for nonprofit organizations: benefits, financing, and how to get started

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solar for nonprofits

The number of properties with rooftop solar panels is increasing day by day, and it isn’t just homeowners who are installing solar panels to offset their own electricity bill. Businesses as small as your local general store and as large as Google have installed solar on-site to decrease overhead costs and promote corporate social responsibility. Now, nonprofit organizations are starting to explore their solar options as well.

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Is Solar Energy Worth it in New York in 2017?

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new york solar energy graphic

There’s no question that New York state is headed in the right direction. Find out why now is such an exciting time for sunshine in the big apple.

Are you considering a solar energy system for your home or business in New York, but want to know more about the costs and benefits before making a decision? In this article we look at the reasons why going solar is a good idea in New York, and also examine the various incentives and financing options that may be available to you if you are a New York resident.

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Key metrics for comparing solar panels: PTC solar, STC rating and temperature coefficient

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So you’ve made the decision to go solar. Well done! If designed right, a solar power system is a great, long-term investment with both financial and environmental benefits.

Choosing the right solar panels is one of the most important steps in designing your solar power system. There are hundreds of options, and while all panels are designed for one purpose – to convert sunlight directly into electricity, not all panels are created equal. Different solar cell technologies and the quality of manufacturing can impact the performance of ysolar panel quality and performance energysageour panels. For these reasons, comparing solar panels and finding the right one to meet your specific system needs can sometimes be a complicated task; but, it doesn’t need to be.

In this article we’ll explain important metrics like PTC power rating, STC, degradation rate, efficiency and temperature coefficient.
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Compare the top solar lease companies: Sunrun vs SolarCity, Vivint, SunPower & Clean Power Finance

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Top solar leasing companies graphic energysage

 

Who are the top solar leasing companies in the country, and how do they differ in structure and business model? This article aims to answer these questions, examining some of the biggest solar lease providers in the US – SolarCity, Vivint SolarSunrun,  SunPower and Clean Power Finance.

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What happens if your tax liability is too small to claim the Investment Tax Credit for solar?

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investment tax credit

The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is a generous incentive from the federal government. It was put in place to encourage uptake of solar energy and other renewable energy systems in 2006. It has been tremendously successful in this goal: the number of solar installations in the US has increased 1,600% since the ITC was introduced.

Many EnergySage customers quickly understand the potential benefits of the ITC, but have questions when it comes to the particulars of how it operates. Frequently, we field questions about whether or not they can claim the ITC at all, and when and how it can be applied to their tax bills. Continue reading

SolarCity Warranty & Performance Guarantee Explained

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SolarCity warranty explained

A solar panel system is a 20- to 30-year investment in your home, and having a strong warranty to support your solar installation is one of the best ways to be confident in your investment. SolarCity, the largest solar leasing company in the country, claims that their coverage “is the best in the industry, with repairs and a production guarantee at no additional cost.” So how does their warranty measure up? Read on for our complete review of SolarCity’s warranty offerings.

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