Benefits + FAQs

Check Out Some Of The Potential Benefits Of Solar Energy


Benefits of Solar Power for Homes and Businesses

The cost of electricity from the grid has sky-rocketed in recent times. One way that homeowners can save a significant amount is to install solar panels in their homes. These panels convert sunlight into energy which then powers your home through inverters. Solar energy is not only affordable but also renews itself constantly as there is no fuel cost involved with it, unlike fossil fuels which are more expensive to use and require a lot of energy to be extracted from them.

● Reducing or eliminating electricity bills – Once a solar panel system is installed, homeowners can expect to see a reduction in their monthly electricity bills. In some cases, the bill may be eliminated altogether!

● Generating clean, renewable energy – Solar energy is a clean and renewable resource, which means it doesn’t release harmful emissions into the atmosphere like traditional forms of energy generation do.

● Improve property value – The cost of installing solar panels is getting cheaper over time, making it a viable option for renovating and increasing the value of the home. Installing solar panels, especially on smaller homes, can increase property value by as much as 15%.

● Government incentives – Many state and local governments are offering incentives and other support to homeowners who install solar power systems in their homes. This includes tax credits and rebates, with certain states even allowing homeowners to sell excess energy back to the grid.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Net Zero or Net Metering?

Net Zero can be explained as your solar panels producing enough power from sunrise to sunset on a given day to power your home & offset the power used overnight.

Net Zero is a way to design a solar system for the most common billing method in the US and especially Texas. It works a lot like "roll-over minutes" did for cell phones before unlimited plans became the norm. Greater Texas Solar designs the system to generate a percentage of your yearly kWh (kilowatt hours) usage. Since daylight varies throughout the year the system will generate a lot more kWh's during the summer than in the winter, and this extra generation rolls over as a credit to be used during times when the system is not generating as much (such as on cloudy days).

Your utility company keeps track of each kilowatt-hour of electricity generated by your solar panels and takes each kilowatt hour off your electric bill at full retail rates. You build credit during the day and use the grid at night. Most utility companies will tally the credits and refund you any overage at the end of the year, although this may vary depending on your provider.

What tax incentives are available?

The Business Energy Investment Tax Credit (ITC) & Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit was approved in Congress in 2015 which extended the solar panel tax credit.

  • 2022: Owners of new residential and commercial solar can deduct 26 percent of the cost of the system from their taxes.
  • 2023: Owners of new residential and commercial solar can deduct 22 percent of the cost of the system from their taxes.
  • 2024 and beyond: Owners of new commercial solar energy systems can deduct 10 percent of the cost of the system from their taxes.

What happens to my electric bill?

Your bill depends mainly on how your specific utility handles solar interconnections. Most utility companies have small fees for which they bill regardless of how much solar you generate. An example would be your "meter charge." However, in all cases, you will see a decrease in the energy you purchase from your utility on your bill. This is because the power generated will be used by your house before any excess is fed back into the grid. This excess generation is what becomes "Net Zero" billing.

How do I know if my home is suitable for solar panels?

Panels can be roof mounted on a home or barn, carport or other buildings. Once a roof location is chosen, Greater Texas Solar will look for any issues such as tree or chimney shadows that require attention before installation.

South or Southwest facing roofs are the most effective. East and West facing roofs will work well but may require more solar panels to compensate for the orientation. Ground-mounted panels are also an option, either with a fixed tilt or tracking system.

What kind of lifespan and warranty should I expect?

The lifespan of solar panels can exceed 40 years. Most manufacturer's warranties cover 25-30 years with an industry standard of 25 years for a certain percentage of power production.

We have found a good rule of thumb to be; if it mounts on the roof, it will have a 25 to 30-year warranty, this includes panels, racking, micro-inverters, and power optimizers. The items that are mounted elsewhere like string inverters, safety disconnects, and monitoring systems have warranties that can vary quite a bit. Greater Texas Solar provides a 2-year workmanship warranty with every install.

How will solar panels impact my home's value and property taxes?

Homes with Solar power sell for more money as an industry standard. To calculate how much solar has increased the value of your home, multiply the savings (example $250) by 12 months and then multiply that by 25 years. This calculation does not account for inflation or rising energy rates, which would add more to the value. Bottom line, the long-term savings over 25-years is about $75,000 and the value of your home is automatically increased at resale.

Texas offers a total exemption for solar, so property taxes cannot be raised based on solar panels being added to your home.

How do I calculate what size solar system I need?

The amount of solar power you need to reduce your reliance on the grid, or to go off-grid entirely, depends on how much electricity you use. To estimate the size of the system you need, start by looking at your electricity bill and find the kilowatt-hours (kWh) used in a month. Multiply that number by 12 to get your annual usage. That's the amount of solar power you would need to produce each year.

How many solar panels does it take to power a house for a day?

The answer, of course, depends on several factors, including the size and type of your home, the amount of sunlight your location receives, and the wattage of your solar panels. But on average, it takes about 10 to 12 solar panels to power a house for a day.

Can you run a refrigerator, AC, TV, and other appliances on solar power?

Homeowners are increasingly interested in solar energy as a way to reduce their monthly energy bills and become more independent from the grid. But is it possible to run a refrigerator, air conditioning unit, or television on solar power? The answer is yes – with a little bit of creativity, you can run most appliances on solar power. To
power your appliances with solar energy it is crucial to determine how much electricity your
appliances use. You can find this information in the owner’s manuals or by doing a quick Google search. Once you know how much electricity each appliance uses, you can start figuring out how to power them with solar energy. If you have a small home and only want to use a few appliances off the grid, you might be able to get away with using a small solar system.

Do you get a tax write-off for solar panels?

The short answer is yes, you can get a tax write-off for solar panels, however, there are some limitations and the amount of write-off will also depend on if you have installed the panels for personal or business use. There are also some limitations on how much of your solar panel
installation costs can be written off. Generally, you can only deduct the cost of the equipment and materials that were specifically used in the installation of the solar panels. The cost of labor and other associated expenses usually can't be deducted.