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Get Paid For Solar Energy You Don’t Use

It’s true that solar energy can be a great financial investment—not just because of the money that you can make—but because of the money you can save. Unfortunately, you can’t just sell your solar power to generate income, however, the biggest benefits that you will see come from your solar energy system will impact your finances.

The great part is, if your solar energy system is part of a grid-tied solar system, you can send the solar electricity that your system generates back to the grid, and you can receive a credit from your utility company, or they might purchase it at a wholesale price. Let’s discuss this a little more…

How Utility Companies Compensate for Solar-Generated Energy

In most states, including Florida, utilities are legally required to have net metering rules. What is net metering? Well, net metering is the method that your utility company uses to compensate you for the excess electricity that your solar power system generates that is then uploaded to their grid.

When the sun is shining, (Hello, Florida!) and your solar energy system is cranking out kilowatt-hours, it might be producing more electricity than your home, property, or business can use. Instead, that excess electricity is uploaded into the grid and is used to meet the electrical needs of your community.

Don’t worry, you aren’t losing this electricity and you aren’t giving it away for free. Your utility company keeps track of how much electricity your solar power system has uploaded and then provides a credit for the same amount of electricity.

This credit can come in handy during times when your solar energy system can’t produce electricity like at night or during storms when the sunlight is blocked. During these times you’ll be able to draw electricity off the grid for free until the utility company pays you back for the electricity that your solar system contributed to the power grid.

Will I Make Money?

Since you aren’t exactly selling your excess electricity to the utility company, you’re not making money. But you are exchanging your excess power for the right to use the same amount of electricity for free at a later time, which saves you money.

Net metering allows you to exchange your excess electricity at the retail rate, which means that it could be worth the same amount that you would pay the utility company for it.

Bypass a Solar Storage System

Because of net metering, you can bypass a solar storage system or the use of backup batteries. While batteries can be a great way to provide your system with backup power when the grid goes down, it can be quite costly to install a storage system large enough to cover all your energy needs if the grid is down or throughout the night or on rainy days.

Solar Power Saves You Money

In addition to various incentives when you install solar panels, such as the federal government’s solar investment tax credit, and regional grants or credits, you could decrease your installation costs by a considerable amount.

Once your solar system is paid off, you can enjoy free electricity for the entire life of the system, which could be over 20 or 30 years. By installing solar energy, you eliminate the need to purchase your electricity from the utility company and in the end, save big on your monthly bills.

Install a Solar System with Solar Bear

The money savings can add up quickly depending on your system and the amount of energy that you use. In just a few years your system could generate enough electricity to pay for itself, leaving you with decades of free solar energy.

Ready to knock out your electricity bill and say goodbye to Big Energy? Contact Solar Bear in Orlando at 727-471-7442 for a solar panel installation consultation. Start saving money on electricity today!

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Solar 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Solar

Solar 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Solar

Are you interested in learning more about solar energy for your home? You’re not alone! In fact, millions of Florida residents are making the switch from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy. Want to learn more? Check out this quick version of Solar 101.

What is solar power?

Solar power is a renewable energy source generated from the sun in the form of electric or thermal energy. There are many ways to capture solar energy, however, the most common is with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels that convert the sun’s rays into usable energy. Because it is environmentally friendly, universally available, and completely pollution-free, solar energy is becoming popular especially in states like Florida where there are 200 days of sunshine per year!

How does solar energy work?

There are four main components of a solar panel – a layer of silicon cells, a metal frame, a glass casing unit, and wiring to transfer electric current from the silicon. Silicon is a nonmetal with conductive properties that allow it to absorb and convert sunlight into usable electricity. When light hits a silicon cell, the light causes electrons to initiate a flow of electric current – a process known as the “photovoltaic effect”. Here’s how it works…

Step 1: Photovoltaic (PV) cells absorb the solar radiation and convert sunlight to direct current (DC) electricity.

Step 2: The inverter converts DC into alternating current (AC) electricity.

Step 3: The electrical panel sends power to your lights and appliances.

Step 4: The utility meter measures the energy you draw and give back to the grid. If you produce more than you use, your power company will buy it back from you at the end of the year.

How much does solar cost?

Thanks to advanced solar technology, the cost of solar panel installations has dropped nearly 80 percent in the last five years! Currently, the average cost for solar panels is $1.77 to $2.20 per watt. A solar panel installation for the average home will run anywhere from $10,626 to $26,460 for a 6 to 20 kW system.

However, don’t let this upfront cost scare you! There are several local, state, and Federal government incentive programs available to help offset the cost of the solar panel installation. In addition, by making the switch from fossil fuel to solar energy, you can save up to $100 per month on your utility bills!

Contact the Solar Energy Experts at Solar Bear Tampa!

At Solar Bear, our solar power experts can help you decide if going solar is right for your home! Contact us today at 813-519-4536 to learn more about solar energy or to schedule an appointment for a FREE estimate on solar panel systems.

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How Much Energy Can Home Solar Generate?

When considering the installation of solar panels at your home, power output or wattage is an important factor. Upon receiving quotes for solar panels, you will see line items next to different solar panels that list (for example)245W, 300W, or 345W. These confusing numbers are referring to the solar panel’s wattage, capacity, and power output.

Our solar energy experts explain how much energy is generated for each individual solar panel and an entire home solar panel system.

How much energy does home solar energy produce?

Solar panels are rated by the amount of direct current (DC) power they produce under standard test conditions and are expressed in units of watts (W). This measurement represents the amount of power an individual solar panel can produce under ideal sunlight and temperature conditions.

Key takeaways from solar panel energy output include:

  • On average, an individual solar panel typically produces between 250 to 400 watts of power. Actual output is based on variables such as shade, orientation, and the amount of direct sunlight per day.
  • Based on a 30-panel system, your home solar energy will produce more than enough electricity per year to match all your electricity usage and more!

Calculating Solar Energy Per Single Panel

There are many benefits to living in the Sunshine State, one of which is the five hours (on average) of direct sunlight available per day. Based on this amount of sunlight and a 290-watt premium panel (for example), here’s how you can calculate your individual solar panel output:

5 hours x 290 watts = 1,450 watts-hours or roughly 1.5 kilowatt-hours (kWh)

Based on this calculation, the output for each solar panel at your home would produce around 500 to 550 kWh of energy per year. With just one solar panel, you would have enough energy to power most small appliances without issue! Just think how much energy can be generated with an entire system. More on that next…

Calculating Entire Solar Panel Systems

Using the example above (five hours of direct sunlight with 290 W solar panels), a 30-panel system will generate 43.5 kWh of electricity per day! Multiply 43.5 times 365 days per year, your solar panels will generate 15,800 kWh of electricity in a full calendar year! Considering that the average electricity used per home in a calendar year is around 10,600 kWh, you will have more than enough energy to power your home.

Get a FREE quote on solar panels from Solar Bear!

Curious to see if a home solar system is a good fit for your energy needs? Contact our experienced team of solar energy experts today at 813-567-8484 for a FREE quote!

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Why Choose Spray Foam Insulation

Did you know that up to 40 percent of a home’s energy is lost due to air leaks and infiltration?? Gaps and air leaks allow expensive heating and air conditioning to go to waste, resulting in increased energy usage and higher utility bills.

The solution? Spray foam insulation! Here we take a closer look at spray foam insulation – what it is and the many benefits it can provide.

What is spray foam insulation?

Spray polyurethane foam (SPF) is a spray-applied plastic used to insulate homes and to seal cracks and gaps, making the home more comfortable and energy-efficient. It can also be an effective sound barrier, perfect for media and theatre rooms.

There are three main types of spray foam that can be used for insulation purposes:

  • High-density: Ideal for exterior and roofing applications
  • Medium-density: Ideal for continuous insulation, interior wall cavity fill, and unvented attics
  • Low-density: Ideal for interior wall cavity fill and unvented attics

The spray foam insulation experts at Solar Bear Tampa will help you choose the appropriate product and delivery system for your new construction, renovation, or insulation project. Call us today at (407) 904-7123!

Benefits to Spray Foam Installations

Spray foam is very versatile and can seal wall cavities, exterior walls, crawlspaces, attics, and small gaps and cracks throughout the house. Because spray foam limits air infiltration and air movement throughout your home, energy usage is significantly reduced, intrusion of pollutants and allergens is prevented, and it will make your home more comfortable.

Other benefits to installing spray foam include:

Improves energy efficiency: Spray foam can help to significantly lower energy bills by reducing air leaks and improving your home’s energy efficiency. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, using spray foam to minimize air leaks can save homeowners up to 15 percent on heating and cooling costs.

Increases the structural integrity of your home. Spray foam can provide additional building strength which leads to reduced roof repairs and overall maintenance costs.

Makes your home more comfortable. Spray foam decreases drafts and helps maintain the same temperature throughout your entire home.

Improves indoor air quality (IAQ). Sealing your home with spray foam will do wonders for keeping out allergens and preventing moisture from entering your home.

Allows you to spend less on HVAC equipment. Spray foam is an effective insulator and air sealant, and therefore, will make a home a lot more energy-efficient. Homes with adequate insulation can efficiently run on smaller (and less expensive!) HVAC equipment.

Qualifies you for tax benefits and rebates. Spray foam installations qualify homeowners for certain tax credits and rebates. Savings is based on the type of spray foam that is installed in your home, i.e., higher insulation power equals more benefits.

Contact Solar Bear Tampa for a FREE quote on spray foam insulation at your home!

At Solar Bear Tampa, our energy experts are trained to provide the right solutions for your unique needs and will help determine the best spray foam option for your home. To learn more about our residential spray foam installation services, please contact our Tampa solar energy and spray foam insulation company at 813-567-8484!