Solar energy is the fastest-growing and most affordable source of renewable and clean energy. Driven by the increasing electricity bills and reduced cost of solar energy, solar panel sales have been increased throughout India. Most people nowadays opt for solar systems to enjoy significant savings on their utility bills and fight against climatic changes. If you’re planning solar panel installation, then you must know everything about solar energy and its systems.
In this post, you will discover the important information required to make your move to solar power easier. For example, solar panel mounting structure, solar technology, net metering, and lots more.
What is solar energy, its benefits, and its components?
Solar energy is simply the conversion of sunlight or solar radiation into usable and clean power via the PV (photovoltaic) effect. Solar cells made up of silicon, absorb sunlight and transform them into usable electric current.
Solar power is produced and used without producing any harmful gas emissions and creating no pollution or waste. Hence, there is no environmental damage. Moreover, it can reduce carbon footprints and global warming risks.
Since sunlight is a free source and available in abundance, solar systems provide a constant supply of reliable energy, thereby reducing dependency on traditional electricity suppliers. Based on your location, size & quality of the solar system, and your power consumption needs, you can expect up to 80% reduction in your utility bills.
Even though the initial installation cost is a bit expensive, you can get a better ROI within 4-5 years through significant financial savings like subsidies, incentives, tax benefits, etc. Installing rooftop solar panels will act as a buffer against possible tariff increases in the coming years.
In remote areas having frequent power cuts, unreliable grid power, and failures in the grid, off-grid or hybrid solar systems provide the best alternative. Homeowners or other buildings have a stable power supply even when the main grid goes down.
Solar panel components
As discussed above, solar panels have small solar cells to absorb the rays of the sun and produce DC. Solar inverters are used to convert this high-voltage direct current (DC) into alternating current to be used by different appliances. The inverter transfers AC or alternating current to the main wiring.
Solar battery backup can be used to store the power produced by solar panels for future or emergency use. Mounting structures, walkways, and ACDB/DCDB boxes are some other accessories essential for the secure installation.
Main types of solar power systems
These solar systems are connected to the grid. Hence, they will automatically shut down when the grid shuts off. You can use the extra produced solar power for more financial benefits by sending it to the grid and getting compensation for it. You can also use the grid power to meet your energy needs.
These are opposite to on-grid as they are independent of the grid. An off-grid solar inverter turns on when grid power is unavailable. These systems are perfect for areas having an unreliable supply of electricity. To store the excess power, you can use a battery system.
These systems are connected to the grid and can also be integrated with the battery backup. A hybrid inverter remains turned on all the time.
Types of solar panels
Mainly, there are 4 different types of solar panels having varying efficiency levels and applications.
They are the most efficient solar panels made of a single silicon crystal. They come in black shade and have high wattages. Monocrystalline panels have some level of efficiency even in shaded areas.
They are more expensive than monocrystalline panels and are made using silicon scraps. They need a completely shadow-free rooftop and can be identified via their blue color.
They are the upgraded version of monocrystalline panels, featuring a layer of solar cells at their back surface. Mono PERC panels have the highest efficiency.
They are slimmer and more lightweight solar panels than mono and poly panels because they don’t depend on silicon. They can be installed easily and widely used for BIPV installations and utility-scale.
How much does a solar energy system cost?
The solar power system cost depends on various factors like the brand, size, and type of system, user’s location, orientation, types of inverter, etc. On average, the cost of a high-quality on-grid solar system with a 1-kilowatt capacity will be approximately 52k-58k.
However, off-grid and hybrid solar panels with the same capacity will cost around 65k and 75k respectively. Note that these are just approximated figures and can possibly be changed due to varying solar industry scenarios and policy environments.
What is the net metering mechanism?
Net metering is a billing mechanism through which a user can sell surplus power to the grid at a standard electricity tariff. Received credit can later be adjusted in your monthly utility bills.
What is gross metering?
This is somewhat similar to the net metering mechanism. The only difference is that with this mechanism, you initially add produced solar power to the main grid and receive power straight from DISCOM at the local electricity tariff whenever required.
Why solar mounting structure is essential?
Solar panel mounting structure must be given a higher significance as it helps in proper and safe panel installation. It reduces the cost of repairing and replacement of solar system by providing a stable foundation that can withstand any environmental situation. It doesn’t need expensive maintenance and protects panels from any possible damage.
The mounting structure is easy to install and has longer life sustainability. The right angle and efficient design of the structure allow the absorption of maximum sunlight and more solar power production. Thus, don’t ignore the mounting structure before solar panel installation.
How much cleaning and maintenance does solar panel needs?
Solar panels are designed using premium quality materials and components without any moving parts. Thus, they will last longer for about 25-30 years with minimal maintenance. But, you must completely clean the panels every six months to remove the collected dust, dirt, grime, debris, bugs, and other contaminants.
Do remember that this is not a fixed timeline for cleaning. You must clean your solar panel whenever you notice any dirt. You can go for manual cleaning by simply using a soft cloth or brush, lukewarm water, a mild soap or dishwashing liquid. Don’t forget to clean your systems at the end of winter and summer seasons and after rain.
A professional system check and annual maintenance contract is recommended to ensure safe inspection, cleaning, and maintenance. Experts have safe equipment to ensure a secure cleaning process. The cleaner your panels are, the more efficiency and lifespan will be. Whether you need solar installation for your residential property or commercial array, Megamax Solar – the best rooftop solar system installers in Delhi NCR will help you with high-quality and satisfactory solutions. So, reach out to us to share your requirements and get the best services.