Will Solar Power Work For My House?

Daniel Sullivan educating homeowner about residential solar power

You are a great candidate for solar if:

  • You own your home
  • Your monthly utility bill is $150 or more
  • Your home’s roof faces South, West or East
  • Good sun exposure between 9 am - 4 pm

A more detailed analysis of your property, your current and future energy needs and other important considerations must be done to make sure, but most property owners who meet aforementioned criteria find that installing a solar power system on their home is a sound financial investment.

Purchasing a solar power system that is properly designed and installed on your property allows you to generate your own power directly from the sun’s rays and dramatically reduce or do away with entirely your current monthly utility bill. Be careful, because buying a “cookie cutter” system that is not installed properly ensures only years of costly headaches and a system that doesn’t produce as it should.

Other Things To Consider

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If your home’s roof faces only to the north, you are not a good candidate for solar. If another solar company is proposing placing panels on your north-facing roof, they aren’t looking out for your best interests and you should consult with Sullivan Solar Power for reliable advice.

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If you own an older home, the amperage of your electrical panel may need to be upgraded to handle the maximum solar power system size that can be installed.

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If your property is serviced by a septic tank system, care should be taken to avoid placing ground-mounted solar panels over the septic tank or the reserve field. Installing a solar array over any portion of septic system can cause problems later on if the septic system needs to be maintained or replaced.

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If you have a flat roof, tilt racks may be needed in order to optimize the angle of your panels to the sun. An ideal tilt angle for solar panels in Southern California is 17 degrees to maximize summertime solar production.

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Your roof must be in good enough condition to support the solar panel system, or you must have sufficient ground space on your property for a ground-mounted solar array. If your roof is 10 years or older, Sullivan Solar Power will have a roofing inspector come out and determine if the roof can support a solar power system. We are able to install on virtually any type of roof, including clay tiles, and have a solution to help ensure that your roof is in as good or better condition than it was when we started.

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In some cases, shade from neighboring trees or structures on your roof can adversely affect the solar power system performance. A detailed report should be developed and given to you to understand the true impact of shade, if any.

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If you own a condominium or townhouse, you should check with your HOA before going solar. In some multi-family developments, the HOA actually owns the building exterior where the solar panels and other equipment will be placed.

Icon of home and people representing single family HOA living

If your single-family home is governed by a homeowners’ association, you may be required to abide by some rules, but by law, the HOA cannot prevent you from going solar.

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Coastal locations that receive more marine layer clouds may require a slightly larger system than would be needed to generate the same amount of power at an inland location. In designing your solar power system and estimating your energy projections, we take into account the peak sun hours at your property.

Icon of hour glass with dollar sign representing savings over time

Property owners who pay less than $150 each month for electricity may not be able to save money by going solar in the short term, but many still go solar for the positive environmental and long-term financial savings.

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Consider the look and aesthetics of the panels and other solar equipment that will be installed and avoid placing an ugly or poorly laid out installation on your roof. Doing so can lower the value of your property. A properly designed and installed solar power system will not detract from the appearance of your home. Make sure a computer-aided drawing (CAD) model is produced and provided to you so you understand exactly what is going to be installed on your roof.

Other Things To Consider

There is a lot of information to consider when going solar. We think you should have all the information you need to make an informed decision about your energy future. The good news is, we do all this for you. We will advise you of all your options and let you decide how you want to go solar.