We are happy to write about our experience of installing solar panels on our home and why we chose to to install such a system. We picked up some information about solar energy at a home show and then talked with each other for several months about installing solar panels on our house.
We wanted to be good stewards of God’s earth and do our part in moving in the right direction of taking care of God’s beautiful creation. Our Earth Stewards Team at Home Moravian had been talking about doing those little things that, when put together, could make a difference for the environment. We had read articles, heard discussion, and seen documents--provided by the Earth Stewards team--that made us realize we needed to do our part, no matter how small, that would help protect the earth, our environment.
First some background. Our home faced directly south, and when we had to cut down a tall tree in our front yard that was diseased, giving us even more direct sunlight, we knew it was the right time. The size of the roof allowed us to have 16 panels installed. The cost was calculated per panel, and there was a 25-year warranty on the panels. At the time of installation, there were federal and state tax-rebate incentives, helping on the the long-term cost. (Ask your North Carolina state representative what happened to this benefit during the last legislative session!)
The brochures we received from NC Solar, the company we chose to install our solar panels, explained it this way: “Solar electric technology features an array of panels made up of silicon-coated cells. When sunlight strikes the surface of the PV (photovoltaic) cell, energy is produced as a flow of electricity that can power your home.” (See www.ncsolarnow.com)
Using solar panels, we reduced our Duke Energy monthly bill by 30-50%. The monthly information we received from Enlighten, a monitoring system, about our energy production included weekly energy production (kW) and estimated carbon off-set information. Our first two examples were:
- Your carbon offset for June, 2014 was 757 lbs. – equivalent of 9 trees
- Your carbon offset for July, 2014 was 703 lbs. – equivalent of 8 trees
Everyone we dealt with at NC Solar was polite, helpful, and very professional. They did an excellent job, were eager to help and enthusiastic about their work and product. Very few companies we have worked with over the years have been as easy to work with from start to finish.
According to statistics, North Carolina was ranked among the top five states for solar capacity during 2013.