Frequently Asked Questions

Solarize Troy


Here are some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have a question, please comment below or reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter

How will solar energy come into my house?

Solar panels are made up of photovoltaic cells (PVCs)that convert sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity. An inverter changes this direct current into alternating current (AC) electricity, which is what our houses use.

What happens if you generate more power than you can consume?

Solarize Troy  offers “grid-tied” systems. These  are connected to the electrical grid (utility company). The systems are typically sized to generated 100% of your annual electricity usage.  During the day and in the non-winter months you will generate more electricity than you need.  The excess electricity is sent to the utility company and they buy it from you at the same price that you buy it from them. Therefore, you end with a credit, or sometimes referred to as “banking” electricity.

During the night or on cloudy days, you will consume electricity from the grid.  As long as you have banked some electricity, you do not have to pay for the electricity that you consume from the grid.  This process is called net metering.

Will I have electricity if the power goes out?

In most cases, when the grid power goes out your solar system will not produce power. This protects the workers repairing the power lines.

When the grid is reliable, a battery back-up system is often not cost effective. For the infrequent times when the power is out, a small generator often suffices for critical power usage, though cost and integration with your solar panel system can be issues.

How can I know if my home is right for solar?

In general, a house or property is right for solar if the roof or yard receives sun for a good portion of the day with no shadows or shading.  If you sign up for an evaluation by our vendor, they perform a free assessment of your property and roof to determine if solar will work for you.

How long does it take to recoup costs for the average consumer?

This depends on a number of variables, but a payback period of approximately 8 years is typical for a simple roof-top installation.

How much on average did the 2014 customers save?

Approximately 25% below market price for equipment and installation. But additionally,  customers got top quality equipment including solar panels made in the United States, so therefore it was an even better value.

How much CO2 can I offset with solar panels?

NYSERDA estimates that a typical solar PV system in upstate New York will save about 4,000 pounds (or 2 tons) of carbon dioxide per year. You can make a more specific estimate for your home with NYSERDA’s Clean Power Estimator.

How long do solar panels last?

The panels are warranted for 25 years and have been known to last longer. The microinverters are warranted for 20 to 25 years. The panels are chosen to have very low rates of degradation of electrical energy.

3 thoughts on “Frequently Asked Questions”

  1. A friend said she would like to consider solar, but was told there are no more openings. Is there a wait list she can get on in case someone drops out? She lives off Pawling Ave., if that matters, near Brunswick.

    1. Thank you for your interest. We are currently working on the details of the 2015 signup season and those details will be released as so as they are finalized. To keep up to date with that, you can sign up for our e-mail list and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

      In the meantime, I’ve forwarded this comment and your details to some other members, and they should be reaching out to you with more information regarding your specific needs.

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