Q : What is photovoltaic, or PV?
In general conversation, photovoltaic is often used to refer to solar energy technology. Specifically, photovoltaic is the technology which uses silicon crystals and wire conductors to generate solar power. These crystals and wires are strung together into solar panels, which are then strung together to generate the desired amount of wattage.
Q : Why should my company invest in commercial solar?
For most companies, the biggest motivation to go solar is the money they’ll save by reducing monthly power bills and freeing up capital that can be diverted elsewhere or added to their bottom line.
Some companies are also looking to improve employee and customer amenities by adding covered parking. Solar shade structures are a great way to turn a shaded parking addition into a savings generator for your business.
Finally, going solar also has a positive community impact as well. Solar will reduce your operation’s carbon footprint in a time when many employees and customers list environmental stewardship as a critical motivator for where they chose to work or do business.
Taking the time to prioritize these goals at the beginning of your solar research will help streamline the proposal and ROI analysis when it comes time to engage a solar design team.
Q : How much does a commercial solar energy system cost?
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all option for commercial solar.
Every system is unique. Arriving at a price begins with your goals and incorporates key structure details such as roof space and any necessary infrastructure additions.
Would you like to add solar parking shades as part of your plan, or are you looking for a more basic rooftop array?
Do you use more energy at night or during the day?
Do you have a tax liability that can be impacted by solar incentives?
All of these factors and many more will dictate upfront cost and energy production potential.
Our commercial solar consultant will be able to guide you through the process and ultimately refine a savings and cost estimate that aligns precisely with your goals and facility.
Q : What size solar energy system will my company need?
This question is dependent on several factors like the size of your building, how much energy your company is currently using, and what percentage of your current electricity usage you want to offset.
A commercial solar system offsetting 70% of a building’s energy needs will be larger than a system that offsets only 30%.
EB Solar Commercial will help you determine what size system is right for your company and its specific goals.
Q : How do I estimate my company's potential savings?
Many factors contribute to your operation’s savings potential with solar.
The biggest being how much energy your business uses throughout the day and what time that consumption is at its peak.
These two factors alone show us the potential for energy offset, as well as the price you are currently paying for utility power purchased.
From there we look at roof space and general facility infrastructure.
The more panels your building can accommodate, the greater the savings potential.
In short, arriving at a savings estimate is simply a matter of adding up your total energy use, and then subtracting the production potential offered by your rooftop space.
Secondary considerations include panel efficiency, roof orientation, and energy prices in your area.
Q : What types of buildings are compatible with solar?
Nearly all buildings are compatible with solar, so long as the roof is structurally sound and has enough space to accommodate panels and racking.
For smaller facilities with limited roof space, ground mounts or solar carports are a good alternative.
You must own the building. If you are leasing the facility, the installation would need to be approved by the building owner.
Q : What financing options does my company have?
The three most popular ways to pay for a commercial solar system fall into one, or a combination of, the following options: cash, loans, or a PPA/SSA.
We recommend choosing a cash purchase whenever possible as it offers the most favorable returns, simplifies ownership, and maximizes solar tax incentives.
Second to cash, low-interest loans, or lines of credit offer the next best ROI on your solar investment. We recommend financing only the necessary portion of the net cost after incentives to achieve the best payback.
Power purchase agreements (PPAs), also known as solar service agreements, are a common way to finance solar installations at commercial and institutional facilities.