Frequently Asked Questions
Does solar work in the winter?
The short answer is YES they do. Although, given the cloud cover and weather exposure and the time of the year, the annual yield might be slightly less than what you would see in the summertime. However, solar panels can be more efficient in colder temperatures depending on location. No matter the weather conditions, SunRay Solar has experience designing solar panel systems to endure cold weather conditions.
How many solar panels do I need?
The number of solar panels that you need will vary depending on the amount of your electric bill. The average home in Southern California typically needs anywhere from 18-20 panels and will usually offset an electric bill of about $200 a month.
What happens if there is an issue with my solar?
If, by any chance, there are issues with your panels, we try to troubleshoot with you through the phone remotely. If that does not work, we try to get one of our technicians out there by the next day, or sometimes the same day. If the problem still persists, please fill out our schedule service form.
What happens after my solar is installed?
After your installation is complete, we then need to coordinate with the local jurisdiction to have your system inspected. We will meet with the city or county representatives on-site the day of the inspection and get it signed off so we can have all of our permits balanced.
How do solar panels work?
Well, solar panels work very simply:
-you put them on a roof
-you expose them to the sun
-the sun hits the solar panels and it creates DC power
From there, it will go into an inverter which converts the DC power into AC power, which is then connected directly to the home. All that AC power will power the home and cover the home’s loads.
How long is the warranty on solar panels?
Many people ask: How long is the warranty for the panels we sell? And regardless of the kind of panel, the warranty is going to be 25 years. Read more on the different warranties we offer here.
What is the difference between monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels?
Both panels are the same, in the sense that they’re both a crystalline product. However, polycrystalline has a speckled look to it, whereas monocrystalline has a very solid look. Monocrystalline is also slightly more efficient because of how it’s made.
If I lose power from the utility company, will my solar still work?
No. For your solar system to power your home in a grid outage, you would require battery storage for your home. We do offer those here at SunRay so, if you are interested, please ask your sales rep.
Can solar help me if my electric bill is already low?
We’ve seen bills as low as $60. We’re still able to save money monthly. What we need to think about is locking in your gas rates. 20 years ago at a buck-a-gallon, if you could’ve done that, then would you have done it? It’s the same thing with solar having the ability to lock in your rates now will save you money for years to come.
Can I add panels to my existing solar system?
You can include panels to your existing system, as long as they are compatible with the current system.
Can you make money from your solar panels?
You can’t necessarily make money off your solar panels. However, you can earn credit with your utility. Many of our sales reps and engineers size your system to cover your utility and make a little extra. So that way, you do have a credit with your utility and make money in a sense.
Do you work with systems installed by other companies?
We can work with systems installed by other companies, except when they are a leased system.
What happens to my solar If I move?
When a customer moves, they have a few options. You can opt into uninstalling your system and moving it to your new home. We can give you a quote for that, or you can potentially increase the value of your home based on leaving the panels there for the next homeowner.
What happens if a solar panel breaks?
If a solar panel ends up breaking on your house as the results of our monitoring technology that’ll be instantly picked up.
These solar panels are by default under warranty for 25 years, so if a solar panel breaks on the house it will be known by us very quickly and it will be replaced as course of the warranty.
How do solar panels help the environment?
Traditional electricity is derived from fossil fuels such as coal or natural gas. Solar panel systems help the environment by generating clean electricity without producing carbon dioxide and other pollutants that negatively affect the atmosphere.
How do earthquakes affect solar panels?
Your roof-mounted solar system is rated and certified by independent labs. They have been verified through rigorous structural calculations and structural reviews. The solar system will not do any additional damage to your home that would not have already been done by an earthquake, especially in California.
All structures are built to earthquake standards. The solar that is put on the roof is upheld to those standards. There are no dangers associated basically with putting PV on your roof, that wouldn’t already be there if you were just under a standard roof.
Can I use my solar if there is a power outage?
Unfortunately, your solar system does also turn off during the power outage unless you have battery storage. These are all grid-tied systems. They do need power recognized to be able to convert the energy from the Sun into usable power to the grid.
What is an overlay?
When you’re considering solar, one of the things that comes to mind is aesthetic and design, or, simply put, “what will my solar panels look like?”
In order to ensure you enjoy what your panels look like on your roof, our design team creates what we call an overlay. The overlay shows you the layout of the solar panels and where SunRay Solar is planning on installing them, and you can either approve or reject the design to your liking! Our goal is for you to love your panels!
Can you install a solar system on an old roof?
Technically, you can, but you will be facing issues.
Older roofs tend not to be able to be as waterproofed. Also, if you are going to put solar panels on an old roof, your roof is not going to last twenty years if it’s not in great shape.
When you go to replace your roof, you’re going to have to remove all the solar panels and then reinstall them. At the time that you buy your solar, it’s always a great idea to make sure that you’re installing them on a new roof.
Can I Use Existing Solar Panels With A New Pool?
So you have an existing solar system but you’re thinking about adding a pool. What you would want to do is determine the size of the pool motor and determine how many hours per day you plan on filtering your pool.
Based on that we can run calculations to determine how many additional panels you need to cover the additional electrical load of that pump. Typically a pool pump will require about 0.75 kilowatts for every horsepower of the motor that you want to run.
How Will Shade Affect My Solar Panels?
When installing a solar system, shading is always a concern that should be taken into consideration. A lot of times people will ask, “I have a tree over there what happens when the tree shades my panels?” or “I have a chimney” or “I have a roof obstruction like a vent or a satellite dish, how will it affect the output of my system?”
All systems are currently designed with optimizers or microinverters and what’s great about this system design is that if you do get spot shading or shading from a tree or other obstacle during certain parts of the day, it won’t negatively affect the overall output of the system as every panel’s individual from the one next to it.
How Will I Be Billed For The Power My Solar Panels Produce?
When you go solar you’ll enter into a net energy metering agreement with the local utility company. What’s going to happen is rather than being billed once a month like you are now, you’re going to be put on a yearly billing cycle.
From month to month within that billing cycle, you will get a statement but no money is due. You only have to pay at the end of the year which is called your true-up. When you get your true-up bill if you’ve produced more solar than you need and you have no fixed charges, then you would owe no money. However, if you have not produced enough solar power and there are fixed charges as part of your true bill you would have to make that payment to the utility.
What Will Happen if the Power Goes Out?
What happens if the power goes out? Under normal circumstances, if the power goes out at your home, unfortunately, your Solar will turn off. However, a way to combat this would be to add a battery storage unit.
How Do I Reset My System After The Power Goes Out?
Unfortunately, if the power goes out your system will turn off. However, there’s nothing you need to do to reset your system because when the power comes back on the system will automatically reboot and turn itself back on. An easy way to confirm that this has happened is you can go online and check your monitoring portal to confirm that your system is producing.
Can I use Existing Solar Panels With A New Electric Car?
So you have an existing solar system and you’re thinking of adding an electric car. What you’d want to do is you would want to add more solar panels to produce more electricity to cover the usage from that electric car. In addition to adding more electrical panels to your system, you’d want to install an electric car charger with a plug that’s compatible with the electric car of your choice.
Can I Install a Battery to Already Existing Solar Panels?
YES! If you have an existing solar panel system and you’re interested in adding battery storage in the future, it’s very easy to do. One of the examples of batteries out there is made by a company called Tesla. Tesla Powerwall 2 is an AC coupled battery, which means that that battery can be easily retrofitted into any existing system that already has solar.