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Solar Energy

We Install Photovoltaics

solar photovoltaics, north central PAThis is solar electricity that is generated when photovoltaic solar panels collect photons from sunshine and produce voltage. This solar electricity  is usually connected to utility power lines and produces a credit toward your electric bill.  It can also be stored in batteries for emergency backup power, or for off-grid systems.

Photovoltaics (PV) systems consist of photovoltaic panels wired together and mounted to a south sloping roof with no shading. The PV panels produce DC current which is usually wired to an invertor. The invertor changes the DC to AC current and supplies it to your electric panel box. PV systems can be any size if they are connected to the utility grid. The larger they are, the bigger the credit will be to your electric bill. To power your entire building off the grid requires careful sizing of the PV system to your electric load. A stand-alone PV system requires a bank of deep-cycle batteries for storage. 

Small stand-alone PV systems can power specific applications, such as outdoor lighting or water pumping. Small PV systems can also provide emergency backup for critical systems such as furnace ignition and emergency lighting.

In Pennsylvania, a 1 KW photovoltaic system produces about 4 – 5 KW hours per day. Many homes use about 20 – 30 KW hours per day of appliance use, not including electric heat or air conditioning. Obviously, a large PV system would be needed to power an entire home, unless steps were taken to drastically reduce electric use. Most customers purchase smaller systems that are grid-tied and also take steps to conserve electricity.

An interconnection agreement must be filed with the electric company.

There is a 30% Federal residential tax credit for photovoltaic systems purchased and installed before the end of 2019. Call us for more details!

Passive Solar Energy

Passive solar energy is solar heat that warms your home or workplace. To capture passive solar heat, the building or addition must be designed and built with ample south facing windows to collect the sunshine and heat absorbent surfaces to collect the warmth of the sun. Good passive solar design also includes overhangs that shade windows from summer heat when the sun is high in the sky. For more information, or for help with a passive solar renovation project, see our Green Remodeling Services.