While it used to be difficult to predict in Michigan whether the investment in solar power generation would produce a sufficiently strong return-on-investment, that is beginning to change with the introduction of exciting new products from our preferred vendors such as CertainTeed. Every assessment we make is site-specific, but today it’s finally possible to harness the sun in West Michigan if all the factors align on your site. People think that just because it’s cold and snows in Michigan during the winter that you can’t go solar. Wrong. Over the course of the year, a city like Grand Rapids gets an average of 4.2 hours of full sun a day. Solar panels are more efficient (produce more energy) when it’s cold, and less energy when it’s hot.
How Solar Works
1. Our vendor’s Solar Systems Capture the Sun
From dawn to dusk, photovoltaic roofing absorbs sunlight and converts it into direct current (DC) electricity.
2. An Inverter Makes the Electricity Usable
Your home uses alternating current (AC), and our inverter converts the DC collected on your roof into AC you can use.
3. You Use Only the Electricity You Need
The solar system will generate a portion or, in some cases, all or more electricity than your home uses during the day. Your home will only pull electricity through your electric meter when you need more than your roof collects.
4. Get Credit for the Extra
If you don’t use all the electricity your roof makes, the excess power can flow back into the power grid if you enter a contract with your power company. Legislation continues to evolve in Michigan with respect to energy buy-backs, so contact your power provider for the latest details. Historically, the Federal Government has issues tax credits for up to 30% of the cost of implementation.
Tips from CertainTeed, Our Solar Manufacturer
Find Your Place in the Sun
Solar panels perform at peak efficiency when certain factors work in your favor. While all solar collectors perform at their best on clear, sunny days when sun exposure is at its peak, our panels are designed to work longer and harder, making the most out of any sunlight conditions, from dawn to dusk. For best results…
1. Face South
This is the optimum position for solar panels, but southeast and southwest facing arrays can produce decent results.
2. Get Out of the Shade
Position solar panels where no shade will fall on them (from trees, buildings, chimneys, etc.).
3. The Best Rays are Middays
When the sun is at its highest, solar panels run at optimum levels. CertainTeed solar technology extends this window.