Buying A Solar Power System: How To Choose A Solar Company | Blog | 123SolarPower

Buying A Solar Power System: How To Choose A Solar Company

It’s important to ask yourself and your potential contractor the following questions.

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There are many things to consider when deciding whether solar power installation is right for you and your household. Once you’ve come to the exciting conclusion to power your house with solar energy, the next step is finding the solar power installer. 123SolarPower take the guesswork out for you by pre-screening all of our vendors and only putting you in touch with licensed contractors. But however you shop for solar companies, it’s important to ask yourself and your potential contractor the following questions.

Consider Your Financing Options

How are you looking to pay for your system? You can purchase the entire system with cash or by taking advantage of a number of solar loan options. If you’re looking for a zero-down option and don’t prefer to own the system, a purchase power agreement (PPA) may work perfectly for you. A PPA is a financial agreement, which enables you to have a solar system installed on your home to generate energy, and then you purchase that energy at a lower price than the utility company could offer, in most cases. In this situation, you often avoid any up-front costs, plus you’ll be exempt from the operation and maintenance of the system.

If it makes financial sense for your household, owning your system is the best long-term option.  Are solar panels worth it? Generally speaking, the more you pay up-front, the more you will save in the long run. But it’s important of course, to consider what is best for your household.  You’ll need a set period of time, usually 20 years, to make overall savings calculations. But you can estimate how much you can save each much month with our solar panel calculator.

Will You Be Hooking Up To The Utility Grid?

Are you interested in installing solar power in an effort to become completely independent of the utility grid? This is a good option for those who live in areas that don’t have easy access to the grid, making power unreliable and expensive.

There are advantages to being connected to the grid, however, especially if your state has favorable net metering policies.Users who are connected are able to use power from the utility company at times that their solar system may not generate enough energy like at night or on cloudy days. Systems connected to the grid are often billed by a net metering process. This means that if you contributed any excess power back to the grid, you can actually run your electric meter backward, since you’ll receive credit for this extra electricity your solar system provides.  Read more about state specific net metering policies on our state pages.

If you will be connecting to the grid, it’s important to ask potential solar providers about their experience doing so. Ask if they have a licensed electrical contractor with numerous years of experience working with customers to achieve effective projects. They should also be familiar with local utility regulations and be answer any questions you have.  If you’re going rouge as an off grid system, ask the company is they offer a production guarantee, and ask for specifics. What happens in your system underperforms? You don’t want to be left in the dark.

Get to Know The Company

Shopping through a trusted marketplace obviously has its advantages, since 123SolarPower, for examples only puts you in touch with licensed providers in your area with years of expert experience. If you decide to shop around on your own, or you just want to get to know a potential provider better, it’s a good idea to ask them specific questions on their experience and background. Ask them about their experience in your local area and their familiarity of working with your utility provider with different solar panel types. Ask for customer reviews and testimonials as forms of reference, and you can always look up their Better Business Bureau rating!

Required Maintenance

Chances are that your system will need little to no maintenance during its long 25+ lifespan. That being said, you should be aware of the replacement or repair procedures with your installer for your specific solar panel design. Make sure you know who to contact if there’s any issues and what do any offered warranties cover?

Get Several Firm Quotes

The 123SolarPower marketplace makes it super easy to get in touch with local, licensed contractors in your area. We make it simple for you to compare quotes instantly by answering a few questions to ensure that you get all your questions answered. It’s important to shop around and speak to several providers so that you can make the most informed decision when it comes to your home solar installation. or enter your information below for free pricing quotes.