Solar panel installation has become simpler over the years but it’s certainly not a typical Do-It-Yourself process. Even qualified electricians need solar installation training on a roof and must become familiar with local permitting and fire code requirements to complete a safe and reliable installation.
Step 1 : Design Estimate
Request a free design quote from SKY SOLAR, certified for SunPower direct and installed solar systems. The solar design consultant will ask you a series of general questions about your home. This often includes questions about your utility, the amount of your monthly electric bills, the age and angle of your roof (flat or pitched) and the type of roof, such as shingles, tiles or clay. In addition to giving you an estimate, your designer will provide solar financing options and educate you about any local and federal incentives for which you may qualify, such as the federal solar investment tax credit (ITC). Once you secure your financing method, we send a Site Inspector out to evaluate your home and begin the evaluation process.
Step 2 : Home and Site Evaluation
In the design phase, we will evaluate your home to determine the best solar panels, inverter, racking and other components. We only install the best SunPower Equinox™ systems to operate as an fully-integrated solar system. SunPower components are 100% covered (end-to-end) under SunPower’s industry-leading Combined Power and Product Warranty. Other installers will design inferior systems with components from several different manufacturers and poor warranty and service terms.
As part of the site evaluation, we will make an appointment to inspect your attic, your roof and your home’s electrical system and determine the best location to mount the hardware that runs your system. During the inspection, we will evaluate your property to ensure that the installation is code compliant and will recommend upgrades if required. For example, if you have an older home, your electrical panel may need to be updated, or when inspecting your attic or roofing, the installer may discover issues that require repair before your system is installed per local building code requirements.
Step 3 : Engineering and Permits
Once all of the information and measurements have been gathered in Step 2, we will create a solar engineering and site design plan. The plan will include the panels and where they’ll be placed on your roof, the wiring of the system and how it will be interconnected with the utility. The design plan will ensure compliance with local fire safety requirements. We will then submit these plans to your city/county permitting departments and to your utility company.
Most cities, counties and utilities have different requirements that can vary greatly and become confusing but rest assured because we handle all of this for you to ensure that your solar system complies with local building codes and utility company requirements.
The design and permitting phase typically takes approximately one to two months, depending on the jurisdiction. We will keep you informed about the progress and let you know when it’s time to schedule the physical installation date.
Step 4 : Solar Installation
In some ways, the actual installation is the easiest part of going solar. You might need to be present when the installers arrive so you can give them access to your roof and to the electrical system of your home. If you have pets, make sure they’re safely secured.
If you’re interested in watching, your installer will let you and your family know where to see all the action. These days, typical solar installations can be completed as quickly as in one to three days, depending on the size of your system.
After the solar panels are attached to the roof and the related electrical and monitoring equipment is mounted, the install team will clean up the work area and begin the last phase, inspection and interconnection.
Step 5 : Flip the Switch
Each city, county, and utility has its own final inspection and approval requirements for solar installations. The city and/or county inspector will visit to make sure that your installation was completed as planned in the granted permit. The inspection process can vary widely and usually takes a few days to a week, depending on where you live.
The utility will also inspect and sign off on the installation before it’s officially connected to the grid. Once again, this interconnection waiting period can take a few days to a week or so. As for permitting, our locally based team will help expedite and navigate through the system more efficiently and we will keep you informed how things are progressing.
After all the approvals are obtained, we will "flip the switch" so you can enjoy the thrill of seeing your electricity bill decline as you generate your own clean energy!
**Any incentives, rebates and tax credits vary and are subject to change and SKY SOLAR LLC does not warrant, guarantee or otherwise advise its customers about specific tax outcomes. Consult your tax advisor regarding the solar tax energy credit and how it applies to your specific circumstances and visit www.dsireusa.org for up to date and detailed solar policy information for your specific area.**
Contact us today for a FREE solar design consultation and gain your energy independence!