Fossil fuels have long been discovered to be not only harmful for the environment and public health, but also finite. This makes them much less sustainable, more unpredictable, and more expensive than renewable energy sources like wind, water, and solar. For the average homeowner, the most accessible way to be a part of the sustainable energy movement is the investment in a solar energy system.
Having solar panels in Encinitas can be very beneficial for homeowners, especially considering the extensive amount of the sun the area receives coupled with high electricity costs (37.63% higher than the national average). If you are wondering how you can make solar panels work for your home.
As a renewable energy source, there are many benefits that fossil fuels simply can’t offer. While there are also some disadvantages to consider, we believe the long-term benefits of renewable energy far outweigh more traditional energy sources. At the end of the day, we need to move towards what is more sustainable for the future of our planets — and, of course, our wallets!
Protects the Environment & Public Health
With the dominant use of fossil fuels over the years, there is no doubt that water and air pollution and other damages have plagued the globe. While renewable energy sources do generate some greenhouse gases and pollutants in the process of converting the energy, it is very miniscule in comparison to the damage fossil fuels can do. Solar and other renewable sources can greatly reduce our carbon footprint as well as health issues such as respiratory and cardiac problems that stem from fossil fuel pollutants.
Renewable energy sources offer great savings, providing more accessible resources that can significantly reduce expenses with long term use. Depending on the size of the system you invest in, the amount of electricity you use, and the amount of sunshine your area gets, you could be looking at even more savings. On top of the savings to your electricity bills, as a homeowner you get the benefit of added value to your property. Studies have shown that homes with solar panels not only sell for a higher price, but also sell quicker than comparable homes without solar panels.
Compared to generators designed to use fossil fuel sources, renewable energy systems will typically require much less maintenance. Why? Renewable energy systems are designed simply to thrive in the elements and experience much less wear and tear. Solar panels, for example, have fewer parts and are not dependent on a flammable or dangerous fuel source that could cause damage to the system trying to utilize it. Further, solar panels are designed to last decades. While warranties typically extend up to 25 to 30 years, some solar panels could perform efficiently for as long as 80+ years depending on the rate of degradation.
Your solar panels allow you to produce energy directly in Encinitas, making it a local energy producer compared to many fossil fuel systems that rely on foreign energy resources. Other renewable energy resources also produce from their local area, cutting back dependence on imported energy sources. The less dependent the U.S. is on foreign energy providers, the more protected our economy remains, especially if we are producing the energy ourselves through sustainable methods.
So what are some disadvantages homeowners interested in getting behind solar need to think through? There are more upfront costs associated with getting your system up and running compared to simply plugging into the grid. Also, if you don’t live in a very sunny area, there can be intermittency (and you also have to consider that your panels can’t obtain energy from the sun during the nighttime).
While solar storage is becoming more available, not every homeowner wants to be completely independent from the grid — you will, however, gain much more control of your electricity bills in the face of rising electricity costs and often get credits for any energy produced during the daytime that you didn’t use, which can be credited towards electricity you use from the grid after the sun goes down. So all that said, yes, there are some drawbacks that traditional energy sources don’t have, but solar technology only continues to improve and become more affordable, shrinking the drawbacks even more.
With numerous state incentives, rebates, and tax credits available to homeowners looking to invest in renewable energy, solar installation in Encinitas is easier and more affordable than ever before. Transitioning to solar energy can not only help you save money in the long run, but also helps protect our environment, public health, and add value to your home. All of these factors make switching to sustainable solar energy extremely beneficial.
Whether you are looking to be completely independent from the grid and rising electricity costs or just want to help supplement your current electricity bills by using the maximum solar power when possible, our solar contractors are ready to find the right option for you. We have years of collective experience, believe in hiring vets to provide exceptional service and support, and offer a range of solar panels for our customers’ specific needs. We’ll walk you through the process to ensure you understand all the benefits of solar panels’ sustainable energy and help you determine if this is the right time for you to install a system on your home.
With 266 days of sun per year, San Diego is a prime candidate to become the leader in solar power. After all, the average number of sunny days is just 205 across the country. We nearly have the type of sun towns in New England could only dream of, especially in January. You can contribute to the city’s emergence as a green community by putting solar panels on your own home. From Mission Beach to Alpine and Chula Vista to Carlsbad, San Diego County properties are in a great position to generate their own energy using the power of the sun. Even better, solar energy is contagious. If you put solar panels on your own home, your neighbors are more likely to consider becoming energy independent, too. Before you know it, San Diego may be on the road to freedom from fossil fuel dependence.
If you’re new to the idea of solar power it’s easy to get overwhelmed. How many panels do you need? When is the best time to get them installed? Will you recover the costs of the solar panels when you sell your home? The world of solar energy is growing and changing every day — keeping up is easier with some expert advice. Before you make any decisions, let’s take a look at some of the basic do’s and don’ts of going solar in Sunny San Diego.
Solar professionals have a busy season and an off-season, just like any business. It’s no surprise that the summer months get people thinking about going solar. AC means escalating utility bills and the everpresent sunshine is top of mind. If you want to go solar in San Diego, consider getting your panels installed during the off-peak season.
Not only can you get better discounts if you get solar installed during the off-season, but you’ll get more attention from your solar installers. A slower schedule for solar companies means they can spend more time walking you through the process and devoting extra energy (no pun intended) to your job.
You see the summer season approaching and you know the peak season will arrive with it. Better get those panels installed right away… right? Not so fast. Rushing to get your panels installed could present its own problems. For one, you should get your roof assessed before you install solar panels.
Like all types of roofing materials, the Spanish tiles popular in Southern California have a limited lifespan. It would be a shame to install solar on a failing roof that needs to be replaced soon. Give yourself a few months for inspection and repairs instead of rushing to get panels installed before the first big heat wave, even if your favorite installer can fit you in. Overall, winter is the best time to make an appointment for solar installation.
The ideal orientation for solar panels is facing south. You can also orient your solar panels to the east or west, though they will produce about 20 percent less energy than south-facing panels. If you only have the option to place your panels on a north-facing rooftop, you may want to consider installing panels on the ground or using a creative tilting system.
The direction your solar panels will face may have a tremendous effect on the type of panels you choose and the number of panels you need to have installed. Planning ahead is key. For instance, you may discover that while your roof faces south, a neighboring building casts a shadow that hinders the roof’s daily sun intake. You may also have a small south-facing portion of your roof that can’t accommodate all of your panels. Most situations can be altered to make solar work but being aware of your roof’s relationship with the sun is the first step to developing a plan.
It’s true that solar panels work at maximum efficiency when they get regular direct sunlight. If you live in Ocean Beach, you might worry that the frequent ocean fog means your panels will be starved of sufficient UV rays. The good news is that even under fog, solar panels can absorb about half of what they need to operate at full potential. When the fog burns off at about noon, your panels are fully back in business. Likewise, tall trees that provide tons of shade to your roof can be a problem, but they don’t rule out solar panels. Trimming fronds and tilting the panels can mean your trees and solar panels live in harmony.
Your solar installer may offer great discounts during the off-peak season, but that’s not the only way to save cash on your panels. While the San Diego Gas and Electric (SDGE) solar rebates are currently exhausted for San Diego residents, the solar thermal rebate program is still active and has a total of $28 million to hand out. Keep your eyes peeled for other city or state rebate programs that will cut back on your initial costs. SDGE has a helpful guide that explains the various ways you can leverage various types of savings for solar installation. With the California push toward solar (most new builds will be required to have panels as of 2020), it’s always possible that new rebates could become available for current homeowners in San Diego.
If you don’t have access to city or state rebates, all hope for major savings is not lost. You can still apply the federal tax credit for solar investment (ITC) to your taxes next year. The tax rebate allows you to deduct up to 30% of the cost of your PV panel installation. Be aware, however, that you only have until 2019 to deduct 30%; after that, the credit tapers off through 2022 for residential properties.
You should also consider the annual savings from switching away from the grid and the increased value of your home. Even if you don’t save money in a lump sum rebate up front, you still stand to make a lot of money in the future. SDGE will also compensate you for excess energy generation that you give back to the grid if you apply and are approved for the Net Energy Metering (NEM) program.
A company that knows San Diego weather and climate patterns will be able to explain exactly what financial returns you can expect from going solar, and how many panels you need to fully power your home. Only a company familiar with the entire county will be equipped to understand the different needs of a home in Mission Valley versus a property near the coastal fog at the beach. In addition to considering price, it’s savvy to place value on how well the solar company understands the unique needs of a San Diego homeowner. Will it be worth it to pay less up front in your work with a company that only has a history of working in the desert?
You have the right to ask as many questions as you want of any solar company. After all, going solar is not only a big financial investment: it’s also a change in lifestyle. You want to work with an organization that knows the solar industry and is comfortable being asked about their practices, costs, and knowledge of San Diego installations.
So, are you ready to get serious about going solar in San Diego? You won’t be left wanting for sunny days to shower your new panels with energy. Between the increased value in your home and the ability to become energy independent, getting solar panels in San Diego has too many benefits to pass up. Contact Semper Solaris today to find out more about going green in SD.
Under California’s new energy storage mandates, SDG&E is required to create solar battery storage facilities for a total of 331 megawatts. So far, SDG&E has been granted approval for 5 facilities, which will cover about 83.5 megawatts, while currently a 30-megawatt battery storage center is already in function. The locations for the facilities include Escondido, Poway, San Diego, Fallbrook, and San Juan Capistrano.
Why are California policymakers pushing for solar energy storage? Currently, renewable energy faces challenges with intermittency — or consistency due to limited hours of sunlight or a lack of wind. While overall reliable, there is some issue with slumps in power. On the other hands, sometimes there is an overproduction of renewable energy without enough immediate demand to use up the energy created, which has forced California Independent System Operator to face the decision of sending this unused power to other states — or even curtail the production.
The solution? Create battery storage facilities to store the power rather than give it away or shut it off. This allows cities to capitalize on more production during peak times and rely on reserves during the lulls in energy production.
Ultimately, the goal of battery storage facilities is to help reduce California’s (and other states taking this approach) dependency on natural gas, which still holds a major grip on the state’s electric generation.
While policymakers are onboard for battery storage facilities, promoting projects across Southern California, not all people share this viewpoint. Some skeptics believe that current energy storage technologies are too expensive an investment. This mindset doesn’t take into consideration the current challenges of overproduction during peak hours (and loss of that overproduction due to lack of storage or usage), as well as issues with over-demand during lulls in solar production. Though the cost may be several cents higher, the reality is that overtime, prices can be driven down with better technology and efficiency. In addition, there are other benefits to consider when it comes to renewable energy storage.
What makes battery storages facilities beneficial:
All together, these benefits point to the reason California policymakers are pushing for storage facilities and calling upon utility companies like SDG&E to pick of the mantle in this area of renewable energy.
While there is still some debate about the cost-benefits of solar battery storage, the reality is that the technology is still new and continually improving. The more the use of solar battery spreads, the more the technology will become more affordable and accessible. That means with more and more residents in San Diego going solar, the state will be able to better capitalize on solar energy production.
Where previously California would have to funnel energy out to other states during excess times, the battery facilities will now allow more of that energy production to be kept in the state and used for dips. The battery facilities will ideally continue to become more affordable over time, becoming a practical way to store up the “harvest” of solar power during the sunniest of days so that homes can draw upon these reserves when needed. Essentially, solar battery facilities help fill the gaps in energy needs and demands so that renewable energy sources can be used more widespread.
There is no denying that electrical costs in San Diego and nearly all of Southern California are on the rise. As the state continues to move towards renewable energy resources like solar, the cost for grid-tied, traditional electricity continues to rise.
San Diego residents are going to see clear spikes in their electric bills over the next few years. In fact, you’ve probably already noticed some serious increases with San Diego Gas & Electric. SDGE has even requested another round of major rate increases that would go into place in 2019. The increases would total up to 28% by 2022, which means major cost increases for San Diego residents.
It is pretty clear that having solar panels installed is now more crucial than ever for residents who don’t want to see such major spikes in their energy bills. Our
San Diego solar company is happy to help local homeowners understand their options when it comes to going solar.
While solar providing savings by cutting back on electrical expenses, there are also other cost-saving opportunities that can make going solar even more affordable and attractive to homeowners. Semper Solaris is extremely familiar with installer solar panel systems in San Diego. We’ve helped countless customers take advantage of lowering their SDGE bills and know the process inside and out.
Making solar worthwhile can include capitalizing on rebates and tax credits offered to residents. These include the 30% federal solar tax credit and the NEM 2 net metering law passed that helps homeowners to sell their excess electricity produced by their panels. You can also see if you qualify for the numerous other programs for San Diego residents.
So how can you tell if it will be worth the investment for your home? The biggest factor is ensuring the cost of installation is covered and exceeded by the production of your solar panels. That means some factors like panel type and size, roof size and adjustments needed, weather, functionality over a 25-year period, and financing choices all come into play. If you payback your solar panels in an average of 5 to 6 years, you could be looking at significant savings over the lifespan of solar panels.
At Semper Solaris, we make it our mission to help our customers truly maximize their savings on solar. That means we will go over your options when it comes to selecting the right solar panel type, battery storage options, and potential rebates and offers that may apply to you. We want to make sure that going solar is worthwhile for you. Interested in finding out just how much you could save on your electric bills by having solar panels installed? We are here to provide the answers. Connect with Semper Solaris today to learn more.
As one of the leaders of solar power usage, San Diego has added another piece of renewable energy infrastructure to the city. The San Diego Padres’ Petco Park began installation of a new 336,520-watt solar power system in January of this year and wrapped up the project by March, ahead of Opening Day for the team. This is just another example of the Padres commitment to leading the league in energy sustainability. The new solar polar system is now considered the biggest system in the Major League Baseball.
Exactly how big was the project? To put it in perspective, more than 715 high-efficiency solar modules were used, each generating up to 470-watts of energy. It is projected to generate 330 kilowatts of solar power, which is sufficient to cover the energy needs of the whole front office for the Padres. In the next 25 years, the system is estimated to produce more than 12 million kilowatt hours, resulting in millions of dollars in savings throughout its years of usage.
For San Diego, this is a great achievement in promoting energy sustainability. Petco Park is considered one of the top sporting venues in the city, making a serious statement about their dedication to promoting cleaner energy and capitalizing on the real savings offered by solar power.
As the eighth largest city in the U.S., San Diego is poised to make a serious impact when it comes to renewable energy. The current population sits just around 1.4 million, with nearly 490,220 households – many of which are considering adding solar panels to their properties. The goal of the city to become more sustainable should come as no surprise after Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s words: “San Diego continues to lead the way on climate action as we march toward our ultimate goal of 100 percent renewable energy.”
He hopes that Petco Park’s commitment to this vision will help spur other major business and homeowners to take similar action. The Mayor and all of San Diego are looking towards a future goal of cutting greenhouse gases in half by the year 2035. He also aims to have the city run on 100 percent renewable energy by this time. Though his goals are ambitious, it’s a vision that is resonating with more and more San Diego residents, especially considering the rising cost and impact of traditional electricity production.
The great news about the solar movement? It doesn’t just benefit the environment and make San Diego’s energy consumption more sustainable — it also makes it more affordable and can even put money back in the pocket of homeowners thanks to Net Metering laws. What more incentive do you need to join the clean energy movement? Going solar in San Diego can help you protect your beautiful city and your long-term savings all in one.
Ready to join the movement? Start by learning how much going solar can save you. Give Semper Solaris a call today.
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