Getting started on the road to solar heating and cooling? Here’s what you need to know.
A lot has to happen before you purchase a system. First, you have to know how much solar energy you need, because the way you and your family use energy and your home’s capability to receive solar power impact the type of system that will work.
A site analysis is the first step in the process of switching to solar power. Factors that influence energy use include:
- Knowing how you use energy during the week and on the weekends. What day do you use the most energy?
- Seasonal patterns also affect how you use energy. Arizona residents generally need more energy during the summer to power continued A/C use.
- Daily patterns are also important. Consider things like appliances, lights, and HVAC equipment that are used on a daily basis.
The second component to a site analysis involves determining how much solar energy is available for use in your area. Arizona continues to be one of the best geographical locations for solar because of the number of sunny days in a year and the amount of direct sunlight received. Roofs that are positioned to get exposure to the sun from the south are also best. This ensures the maximum amount of direct rays.
You should also consider any structural elements or landscaping that might shade your roof and potentially decrease the amount of energy you receive.
Finally, you’ll need to make sure that your roof can accommodate the number of panels you need.
A contractor can help you determine how much of your home’s energy use you want to fuel with solar power. Fewer solar panels are required for powering only heating and cooling, for example, than are needed for the entire home’s energy needs. An HVAC contractor can also conduct a site analysis to calculate solar heating and cooling potential.
From site analysis to installation to enhancing performance, the professionals at Wolff Mechanical can help you make the switch to solar energy. Call them with your questions.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
Wolff Mechanical services the Phoenix Valley area in Arizona. To get started, check out our website.