Watch this short video to learn if your house is well suited for solar panels.
Get Energy from the Sun
Solar panels (also known as "photovoltaic (PV) panels") are made of individual solar cells that absorb energy from sunlight. Residential solar panels hold about 40 cells and are manufactured from tempered glass that can withstand rain, snow, hail and high winds.
Solar panels are typically mounted on your roof at a fixed angle facing south. And while a south-facing roof is best, don't rule out solar if your roof faces east or west.
Panels can be installed on almost any type of roof structure. Four factors to consider are orientation, shading, surface and durability.
Examine Your Roof
Solar panels can last 25 years or longer. While your roof doesn't need to be brand new, it should be in good shape before installing panels on top of it. Asphalt, metal, concrete, clay tile and vinyl roofs all easily support a solar panel system.
Also look for obstructions around your roof and how much shade you get from other buildings or trees. Shade on even small portions of a solar panel can dramatically reduce its output.
Follow the advice of your solar contractor to determine if your roof condition is appropriate for a solar installation project.
A solar company will install and connect solar panels to your electric system to provide sun-driven power to your home. The amount of electricity you can generate from solar panels depends on how much of the sun's energy reaches your property.
You can use Google's Project Sunroof to evaluate solar strength in your neighborhood and get cost savings projections. Despite our northern climate, New England has excellent solar potential.
What happens when the sun doesn't shine?
Weather factors, the amount of sunlight in a day, and shade on your roof are conditions that effect how much electricity your solar panels generate. When you're not generating solar power, you can draw the energy you need from your utility company, paying standard rates.
On the flip side, you can earn credits from Eversource when your solar system produces more electricity than you need in a billing cycle if you participate in a solar incentive called net metering.
Work with a Professional
A qualified solar contractor is the best expert to determine if solar is right for you. Your contractor will help you ensure that the solar panel system you install is sized correctly for your location. System size depends on available sunlight, roof area and the system's efficiency at converting sunlight to electricity.
And remember, solar is not right for everyone. We can work with you to maximize your energy savings in other areas of your home if you decide to not invest in solar.