Solar Panel Solutions That Save You Money
Betts Electric offers a variety of solar panel solutions so you can harness the natural sunlight of the South Okanagan and East Kootenays. We can supply a complete solar panel system (using photo voltaic panels) and have it installed by our certified electricians.
How Does it Work?
Solar power is generated by thin silicon panels made up of photo voltaic cells that act as semiconductors. When the sunlight hits the PV cells, it excites the electrons creating direct current electricity (DC). This DC electricity is then inverted into alternating current (AC) which can be used anywhere in your home or business. The number of Solar Panels that are required depends on how much power you want to generate and if you want to Net Meter or go completely Off Grid.
Net Metering is when your system creates more power than you consume, the utility meter spins backwards and sells this power back to the local utility (Fortis and BC Hydro both offer it). This means on those sunny days, when you’re at the office or away on vacation at the cabin, your Solar PV panel system is making you money. It is easy to see that a solar panel with a net meter can quickly pay for it self while saving the environment.
Off Grid solar systems utilize a battery bank (such as the new Tesla Power Wall) to store the excess energy generated during the day. You will also require a back up generator in case the battery bank depletes in weeks of cloudy weather.
How much does it Cost?
The cost varies depending on the number of solar panels, the location of install (roof or ground) and if you are net metering or going off grid but here’s an example of a typical net metering installation. A 2,500 sq ft home with A/C and gas heating will use around 10,000 kWh (kilowatt hours) per year (you can see your consumption on your utility bill). For this size home, we would recommend installing 30 panels which will produce approximately 8,550 kW hours of energy a year which will cost between $20,000 and $30,000. This cost includes the solar panels, inverters, mounting brackets, connection to your electrical panel, permits and the net metering application.
Is $30,000 not in your budget? You can install a 10 panel system that will produce approximately 2500 kWh per year and add more panels in the future. This is enough to offset the majority of power used by a central air conditioning system in the summer and almost wipe out your electric bill in the fall, winter and spring.*
Each panel produces on average 285 kWh per year and the dimensions are 3-1/2′ x 5-1/2′. Have a look at a few of your electric bills and see how many kWh you used over the last year. Remember power usage may vary significantly depending on the month. Air conditioning will drive the consumption up in the summer, while electric heat will drive it up in the winter. For a more detailed explanation, please click HERE to contact us.
Need more info on how many panels you need? CLICK HERE to go to a free online calculator
Any more Questions?
*Numbers used in the calculation above: Based on home heated with natural gas, 10 panels should produce ~8-10kWh each day in the summer. A 3 ton AC consumes 3.5kW per hour that it runs, which in this example. is 3 full hours each day.