What are the components of a solar power system?
A photovoltaic (PV) solar power system, which converts the energy in sunlight into an electrical current, includes these four primary components:
- PV solar panels unite several solar cells into a single panel, where they convert the energy in sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity
- Microinverters convert the direct current produced by panels into alternating current (AC) for household use
- Mounting racks screw into your roof to support the solar panels and microinverters a few inches above your roof
- System wiring unites the panels and microinverters into a power system
Why do you install microinverters?
Inverters convert the direct current (DC) produced by solar panels into alternating current (AC) for household use. Many solar installers set up arrays that feed into a single, central inverter. We don’t. Central inverter systems reduce overall system efficiency and don’t allow us to know whether a panel isn’t performing as it should. Microinverter systems, on the other hand, use a small inverter attached to each panel. They:
- Are safer and easier to install
- Maximize the electricity flowing from your system
- Allow us to monitor the output of each solar panel
- Provide greater design flexibility for placing your panels
- Allow for easy system expansion
What are typical steps in the installation process?
- Your EcoSmart solar expert, who acts as your primary contact, acquires permits, files applications for rebates or grants, and completes other necessary paperwork
- EcoSmart roofing professionals evaluate your roof structure and shingles and make any needed repairs/improvements
- EcoSmart solar installers and electricians install your system
- Local inspectors verify that your system meets code requirements
- EcoSmart submits an application for interconnection approval to your utility company
- The utility company installs your net meter
- EcoSmart turns on your system!
How quickly will my system “go live”?
The time between joining the EcoSmart family and having your system switched on is difficult to predict. It may depend on town permitting, your personal schedule, homeowner association processes, tree trimming, utility company tasks (including installing your net meter), roof preparation, and other activities. The full process usually takes 2-3 months, but it may take longer.
Are your installers employees or subcontractors?
EcoSmart employees will design, install, and care for your system.
On what types of roofing materials can you install solar?
We install solar power systems on a wide range of roofing products, including:
- Asphalt shingle
- Standing seam metal roofs
- Corrugated metal
- Faux slate (not real slate)
- Flat roofs
- Rubber membrane (TPO)
- We also install ground-mounted systems
How do you prevent roof leaks?
You’ll quickly notice that we focus on workmanship. We are committed to protecting your roof by sealing every penetration point to ensure it’s waterproof. In the unlikely event of a leak, we will repair it for free during the first 10 years after installation.
What if I need to replace or repair my roof before or after installation?
We have good news for you: EcoSmart is part of R. Pelton Builders, which has been installing and repairing roofs since 1985. When we evaluate your roof prior to installation, you’ll receive an honest appraisal of any work that should be done so that your roof lasts as long as your solar system. Though we prefer to install systems on roofs that are expected to last at least 25 years, we can repair or replace your roof at some point after installation, including removing storing, and remounting your system.