Simplifying Your Solar Panel Installation

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Solar panels not only provide you with a green source of energy. They also make your home more valuable and are a step towards reducing your dependence on "the grid." However, solar panels are large and bulky pieces of equipment, so installing them is not the simplest task. Here are a few tips to simplify the process.

Have a contractor give you a quote.

If you are confident climbing on the roof and you have some good DIY skills, you may be able to save money by installing the solar panels yourself. However, you will still need to have a professional connect the actual solar panels to the power grid. Electrical companies generally require that this work is done by a licensed professional since it involves their infrastructure. While you have the contractor out to give you a quote for connecting the panels, have them give you a quote for the full-on installation, too. It might be less than you expect—in which case, you can save yourself a lot of headaches by having someone else do the work. 

Figure out how many panels you need first.

What you do not want to do is mount three panels to the roof, decide there is room for a fourth one, and then run into hassles as you try to squeeze it on one end. Instead, you must calculate how many solar panels you need from the get-go and plan their layout before you install anything. This way, you will avoid overloading a part of your roof or purchasing more solar panels than can fit.

Don't assume the roof is the only option.

As you drive through neighborhoods, you tend to see a lot of solar panels on roofs since that's the most open space the homeowners have. But if you have a large yard or more land, you can definitely place your solar panels on the ground rather than on the roof. There are specialized stands made for ground-placed solar panels. All you really have to do is screw a few things together and set them up; it's a lot easier than roof installation.

Consult a roofer first.

Before you put a solar panel on your roof—if you decide that's your prime destination for them—have your roofing contractor come look over your roof. They need to make sure it is sturdy enough to support the weight of the panels and that the extra weight won't cause premature roof deterioration. You may need some new shingles or a few extra supports put in place before you can safely install the panels.

For more information, reach out to local solar panel installation services.

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