Category: Frequently Asked Solar Questions
Five Things to Know About the Solar Investment Tax Credit
The solar investment tax credit (ITC) passed by Congress in 2005 has been a great success.  Solar power generating costs have fallen more than 75% since then, making solar energy price competitive with most other energy sources even without tax credits!  For those who want to reap the greatest benefit out of their solar investment,...
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Heat Pumps: Solar’s All-Weather Friend
Winters in New England may be steadily warming due to climate change, but reliable home heating is still a must.  This doesn’t mean you have to burn fossil fuels to keep your home warm, though.  Electric heat pumps, running on solar power, can keep your house toasty warm even on the coldest winter days.  And...
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How Can Solaflect Help With Overall Home Energy Management
Solaflect Energy is in the home energy management business.  By linking our patented backyard Solar Trackers with the latest advances in cloud-based software, wireless communications and app-based controls, we make complex energy decisions simple.  Our Solar Trackers are fully integrated to run home electrical devices and heat pumps, fuel electric vehicles, charge home batteries, and...
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How Do solar Trackers Produce More Energy Than Fixed Solar Panels?
Three key factors provide solar trackers with an overall advantage over fixed-mount arrays; solar trackers produce more energy — typically around 40 percent. Solar Trackers follow the sun all day long During the summer half of the year—from the day after the spring equinox to the day before the autumn equinox—the sun is rising out...
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Can Home Battery Storage Work For Me?
  Many customers are wondering if now is the time to add home battery storage to their Solar Tracker systems. With an 80% drop in lithium ion battery prices in the last five years, more affordable options are now available to store solar output for times when you need it most. Better still, battery storage...
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Is My Home Suitable For a Solar Tracker?
A Solar Tracker Works If You Have Room Your home is suitable for a solar tracker if you have an open field or yard with decent solar exposure to the south, east and west, and the room for “a mature apple tree” (16 feet tall at its highest, and 20 feet wide)… which is roughly...
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Why Is It Time to Go Solar Now?
Solar Loans Make Going Solar Affordable With favorable solar loans of 3.99% from our partners at Mascoma Bank and VSECU, you can go solar for no up-front investment, if you choose, and only about $30 a month thereafter.  In other words, you can take out a solar loan for the full amount, and replace your...
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Where Can I Put a Backyard Solar Tracker?
We’ll do a free site analysis to determine what your solar exposure is at several locations in your yard or field so you can compare and select a spot for a solar Tracker that works best, both to generate the most power and maximize your investment, and what works best aesthetically on your property. Learn...
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How Does Solar Power Production Vary Over the Year?
Take a ride on the Solar Coaster!  The solar power production of a solar Tracker varies greatly from month to month. Days in December (in New England) are much shorter than in June. In December, each day lasts only about 9 hours. In June, each day lasts more than 15¼ hours, 70 percent longer than...
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What’s the Difference Between kW and kWh?
To explain the difference between kW and kWh, let’s start with the terminology. A kilowatt (abbreviated as kW) is the same as 1,000 watts (or W). A kilowatt-hour (abbreviated as kWh) is the same as 1,000 watt-hours (or Wh). A watt is a measure of the amount of power flowing at one moment in time....
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Can I Monitor The Solar Production of My Solar Tracker?
Yes, Solaflect’s installations allow you to monitor the solar power production of your solar tracker in real time. We use several different brands of inverters for our solar Trackers. Inverters are internet connected, and come with free web portals that allow give you a window into your solar production, which is updated continuously. You can...
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How Does the cost of a Solaflect Solar Tracker Compare with Installing a Rooftop or other Fixed Panel Array?
Same Sun, More Power At Solafect Energy, we like to say, “Same Sun, More Power.”  That’s because our Solar Trackers follow the sun from dawn till dusk to maximize the production from solar panels all throughout the day.  Using our dual-axis system, the same solar panel can produce about 40 percent more power than if...
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How Can I Monitor My Home Energy Usage?
Your Utility Bill Keeping a close eye on your home energy usage makes good sense. The easiest way to determine your average energy use is to take a look at your utility bill.  Most utilities will show your consumption history over the previous months and this will give you an idea of how much energy...
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How Much Electricity Will I Use With a Heat Pump?
If you are considering solar, the odds are good that you are also interested in being energy efficient in general. The most efficient way to heat a home is using an electric heat pump (aka “mini-split”), and the most efficient way to heat hot water is with a heat pump water heater.*  Heating your home...
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Does New England Get Enough Sunlight for Solar to Make Sense?
Yes, there’s enough sunlight in New England to go solar. While the grass is always greener on the other side, and the sun always shines brighter in retirement states, New England has no trouble sustaining healthy yards and pastures, and we easily get enough sunshine for solar to be a sensible (and less expensive than...
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How Much Will an Electric Vehicle Increase my Power Bill?
While switching to an electric vehicle will save on gas, an eV will increase your power bill. But driving an electric vehicle is an efficient way to get around, both in terms of energy and money. DriveElectricVT estimates that the cost to drive an electric vehicle—either all-electric or plug-in hybrid—is equivalent to driving a gasoline...
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How Much Will Electric Appliances Increase my Power Bill?
Many people looking to go solar want to take full advantage of solar as a source of clean, low-cost energy. This includes “electrifying” their lives by switching from gas to electric clothes dryers, or electric stoves and ovens. It’s only natural to be concerned about how much a switch to electric appliances will increase your...
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Powering An Electric Vehicle With Solar
Do you own an electric vehicle (EV) or are thinking of purchasing one?  If so, you’re in good company.  One in five Americans now say an EV is in their future, and all of the major automakers are racing to roll out new models. Our Solar Trackers are the perfect way to help you replace...
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How Does Net Metering Work?
Net metering works by allowing the grid to act as a giant battery for your solar power system. When the sun shines, the electricity produced will be used to power your home, and your electric meter will not spin. When you produce more than you use, the excess electricity will flow back to the grid,...
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How Do Tracker Mounted Solar Panels Perform in Snow?
We Know About Snow As a Vermont-based company, we know snow, and we know that solar panels covered with snow don’t do anyone much good. Solar on rooftops or on fixed panels on the ground may continue to produce some power with a coating of snow, but they may lose up to 15 percent of...
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Going Solar: How Does It Affect Property Values and Property Taxes?
Many homeowners wonder what will happen to their home’s property value and property taxes if they add solar panels. A number of studies have looked at the question of solar and property value over time. The largest and most thorough to date was published by the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab in 2015. It looked at...
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Can I Mow Under My Tracker Mounted Solar Panels?
Yes, you can mow under the solar panels mounted on your Solaflect Solar Tracker. Available head and working space beneath the solar Tracker will depend on the time of day and day of year. That’s because the solar panels are tilted to face directly at the sun, and as the sun travels the tilt of...
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Will I Get Backup Power From My Tracker If the Utility Grid Is Down?
When Solaflect installs standard grid-connected systems (without home battery storage), a Tracker will not provide power when the utility grid is down. This is a National Electric Code safety feature built into the inverters. The inverter senses if the grid is operating normally, and the moment the grid goes down, the inverter stops solar power...
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