Colorado Solar Installations

There are over 200 solar installation companies in the state of Colorado. In the first six months of 2010 they competed for a little over 1,000 installations statewide. Solar industry professionals have been quoted as saying that “less than 20” of the companies currently installing residential solar energy systems in the state of Colorado follow best practices. In short, these are dangerous waters for unwary consumers.

Solar is an Investment
A typical integrated residential solar installation in Colorado amounts to a $25,000 investment (out of pocket costs vary but can be as little as $12,000 after incentives, rebates and tax credits). To get a very rough estimate the cost of a solar installation take the average monthly KWH times 12(months in year) and then multiply that number by $3 per kilowatt of solar module creation.

Example: If we use XCEL’s number the average Colorado home uses 650KWH per month the calculation would be: 650 x 12 x $3 = $23,400. Note: The $3 per kilowatt hour figure represents a significant drop over the past two years.

Over the life of the system the rate of return of a well planned, professionally installed solar installation is between 5 – 12% depending a variety of factors (including orientation, mounting and demographics). However, if that system is not properly installed or uses poor quality components the ROI can quickly become negative.

Why use a Solar Quote System
Residential Colorado solar investors should research solar installers to determine professional affiliations (often paid for), number of years in business, capabilities, and feedback from previous customers. After obtaining the information for 30 or so companies the potential customer could then filter out those with less than stellar credentials. But, who really has time to research thirty plus companies?

Thankfully, the research has already been done. Many solar industry professionals recognized early on that ensuring that consumers got value for their money was essential to the growth of the industry. A few of these pioneers developed a comprehensive list of fully credentialed solar installers and then placed them in a playing field where they competed only on price. This competitive bid system provides consumers with piece of mind regarding both the quality of the solar company and the price of the system.

Competitive quotes are provided free for consumers. Installers, who must first pass rigorous requirements, pay for the privilege of bidding on projects. If industry professional want to bid on the projects they must be adhere to a high level of professionalism and integrity.

How to Choose a Solar Installation Team

When ready to switch to solar power, most begin with a quote. However, they shouldn’t choose based on price alone, there are a few other things to consider beforehand. Once the type of solar power panels has been chosen, and the buyer has figured how they’ll finance their purchase they are ready for the toughest decision ever, choosing the installation team. Here are some tips.

The team selected will be in and out of one’s home or business and on their roof basically building a custom solar power system.The way the company handles the job directly affects energy production, service and will basically determine if the panels will last as long as possible.

Since solar installers vary by reputation, size and experience as well as products offered, delivery and fees and their geographic focus it’s difficult to assess them using the standard methods of financing options, cost and general benefits. Happily, installation of solar equipment isn’t very complex. As long as the team in question is experienced the job should go off without a hitch.

Consider the following attributes and standards when looking for solar installers:

Expert Knowledge

Any solar installer should have a skill set that’s specific to the install of particular systems. There are specific types of training and several affiliations that the company should have depending on where they are located. By asking them to show their certifications one can see fi they are validated and considered experts in their field of solar power.

Checking certifications means quality assurance will be met for every system that is installed, and any crew that is affiliated with the company for the project at hand should carry at least one professional to oversee the work.

While there are plenty of talented solar installers without certifications, it’s much better to go with those who have been. This way one is guaranteed to be satisfied with the results, and they’ll know they are up to the latest standards.

Licensed and insured

In addition, all solar installers should be licensed and insured to the specifications of the area they are working in. These vary by jurisdiction. The best solar installer will provide their license number before a potential client even asks. At the very minimum they should have liability insurance.

Track record and experience

As an industry on the rise, solar power brings all types of people from professionals to homeowners and even caravan travelers. Many contractors now include solar options along with their regular electrical, plumbing, roofing and other construction jobs. This is a growing trend that hasn’t let up for years and is projected to continue to grow.

When it comes to one’s own system it’s smart to find solar installers that have a proven record for installing the specific system of interest. There is no shame in asking for stats on how many systems they’ve installed, and it’s always smart to get references.

Be Wary of Sub-Contracting

Solar installers are not immune from using sub-contractors. While having “some” is okay, be wary of any company that uses mostly sub-contractors. If they bring a specific expertise or has worked with the company for years, it can be a great arrangement. On the flip side there are tons of risks involved when too many sub-contractors are used.

Ask how the company chooses who to work with, and what the extra hands will be in charge of doing and why. It’s the property owner’s right to know all the details of the job they are paying for.

Finally, the best solar installers are also advisors, and should always be interested in the particular project at hand. They should lend advice at all times, and offer a lasting relationship should any new products be available that would benefit the set up.

5 Reasons You Should Hire a Solar Installer

Solar panel installation is undoubtedly a great decision to reduce your utility expenses and obtain safe, clean and reliable source of energy. When it comes to installing a solar electric system, getting the help of a professional solar installer is essential to get the right and quality panel type for your home. In this article, I am going to describe a few reasons as to why you should hire a solar installer.

1. Providing the Right Type of a Panel

There are a huge variety of solar electric systems available today in varied sizes and types. Therefore, hiring a professional installer will help you select the right type and size of a panel that best fits your electricity requirements and budget. He will determine the panel type by estimating your monthly electricity needs. Moreover, a professional installer will find out the proper place for installation for your solar electric system so that it gets direct sun exposure for generating optimum electricity.

2. Ensuring Your System is Energy-Efficient

Your solar installer efficiently connects each and every component of solar module including inverter, controller and other parts via electrical wiring. Electrical wiring can be dangerous, as it involves specialized connection terminals and wiring and you may not be able to on your own. A professional installer has the expertise to handle the voltages correctly thereby preventing any electric shock or fire hazard, ensuring an energy efficient panel is correctly installed for producing maximum efficiency.

3. Completing Your Project in Time

There are a variety of good reasons to hire a professional installer, but this is the most obvious one. Installing a solar electric system can be a quite difficult task as it involves working with electricity, lifting heavy objects, crawling on the roof and other risky tasks. Getting the help of an installer will provide you with the security that the project will be definitely be completed in time without any problems or mishaps.

4. Avoiding any Possibility of Home Damage

It is another important reason for hiring a professional solar panel installer that ensures your home is safe from any structural damage. There is a possibility of damaging your roof or a solar module while installing the panel yourself. As these solar electric systems are quite fragile and a small hit or drop while lifting can severely damage an expensive system. Choosing a professional to install the panels is one of the great ways to reduce the risk of damage to your panel or your roof.

5. Providing Quality and Affordable Material

A professional solar installer can save you money by providing quality and affordable mounting supplies and power systems. These professional do a large number of installations so they have a better knowledge about the rates of latest mounting equipments, saving you time and money by providing quality products in affordable rates.

If you want to reduce your costly electricity bills then, installing a solar panel is the best possible solution in this regard. Hiring a solar installer is a viable option that will provide a safe and secure installation on your home, giving you much better pace of mind.