Solar Energy: How Solar Panels Work

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In the Valley of the Sun, where cloudy days are few and far between, one would think rooftop solar is a great way to reduce or eliminate your utility bill. This paper will focus on three aspects of deploying rooftop solar: cost, efficiency, and permitting. For those thinking of pulling the trigger on this popular energy saving option please read on.
Rooftop solar is comprised of solar panels, an inverter, and a meter connection to the electric grid. Solar panels are made from different types of silicon that produce direct current when exposed to sunlight. The direct current from solar panels is routed via metallic wires into an inverter which converts direct current to alternating current, also known as DC to AC conversion (Solarworld,
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Remember though, in order to be funded in any leasing option, you have to meet all the financial criteria, have a great credit score, put down a deposit and usually a sizable regular income. This is something that the majority of the working middle and lower class may not be able to qualify for on a regular basis.
Next, you must look into the local utility rebates along with federal and state tax credits. Utility companies across the United States are being mandated to reduce their carbon footprint by 2025 (EPA, 2013). All this may sound good and be a momentum changer for the green power industries but do not be fooled into believing utility companies are not looking at ways to gain back any lost revenue. Utility companies accomplish this by changing their rate structure per kilowatt hour, adding fees to maintain the wires and passing on additional infrastructure costs.
In Phoenix, Arizona, local utility company, Arizona Public Service, offers no rebate for putting rooftop solar on your home (Azsolarcenter, 2014). The State of Arizona does provide a $1,000 break while the Federal government honors a 30% onetime deduction (Arizonagoessolar, 2010). Add this up to the average cost of $17,056 as mentioned earlier and you have a dismal $6,116.80 savings, leaving you still with $10,939.20 to absorb.

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