Solar powered model coming soon

Posted By on April 29, 2010

 

Frequently Asked Questions:
Q. Are there Financial/Tax incentives for installing the system?
A. In most cases yes. It is important to research your answer with a CPA or Tax preparation specialist to ensure rebates, incentives and tax credits are available to you. A summary of incentives can be found at www.dsireusa.com.

Q. Do I need an electrician who specializes in custom solar insulations?
A. No, in most cases a licensed electrician can install the system in less than .5-1.5 days.

Q. How does the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System work?
A. Each panel receives sunlight. The sunlight is converted to electrical power by the solar panels. Each panel has its own self-diagnosing power inverter to convert the panel’s power to 220 volt AC power. All of the inverters channel their electricity to the 220Volt connections in your home’s breaker box.

Q. How do I ensure I will save money on using the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System?
A. Take several simple steps:

  • Replace existing incandescent and high intensity lights with compact florescent bulbs and high efficiency.
  • When it is time to replace appliances, buy the highest efficiency appliance available like the appliances available.
  • Repair/replace worn or damaged weather stripping at doors and windows
  • Install programmable thermostats to control your air-conditioning/heating systems
  • Consider motion sensing lighting and switches when making changes to room lighting
  • Make sure home electronics are in sleep mode or turned off when not in useQ. Are there any requirements I need to be aware of?
    A. Your home needs 120/240 volt 60 hertz power (this is standard in most American homes) and meets all municipal electrical code requirements. A licensed electrical contractor can review your home’s wiring. Before purchasing the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System a licensed electrician should review the condition and capacity of your homes electrical system.

Q. Do the panels have to directly face the sun?
A. No. Highest power output is when the panels face close to the sun. General guidelines to ensure optimum power production are:

  • You have a substantial roof area facing south (compass direction 180 degrees) to Southwest (compass direction 275 degrees) — Roof tops aligned in other directions will work but with slightly reduced power output
  • Extreme angles either vertically or flat will work but can cause slightly reduced power output at certain times of the year
  • There is sufficient space to install a straight line of 6 panels measuring 130 sq.ft.
  • There are no objects such as trees or neighbors roofs blocking the sun as it passes east (90 degrees on the compass) to west (270 degrees on the compass) over the solar panels — Obstructions will reduce the power output from the panels

Q. Can I install the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System?
A. The system should only be installed by a licensed electrician. Before installing any high voltage or roof mounted home equipment, ensure the installer is licensed, bonded and/or insured as required by municipal/state regulations. The inverters produce high voltage and if handled or installed incorrectly the system can result in damage or destruction to the structure, personal injury, or result in death.

Q. Will the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System power my home during a power blackout?
A. No, the power inverters immediately shutdown until utility power is restored. It is all automated. The system will restart when the utility restores power.

Q. Can the 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System be adapted to power my home during a blackout?
A. Yes but with extensive modifications. The modifications need to be designed, for your home, by a licensed electrician or electrical engineer.

Q. Do I need any additional equipment not provided with the system?
A. Yes, electrical wire to run from the roof top junction box to the breaker box. Some electrical utilities want redundant manual protection and may require an external disconnect. This is the same inexpensive, wall mounted device used outside the home on central air-conditioning systems. The electrician installing the system will be able to provide a list of additional equipment required to meet local building code.

Q. Do I need to change my power meter?
A. Your meter may need to be changed if you live in a newer home or if your power utility uses a one way meter. Many utilities do not charge to change out meters while a few do. Contact your electrical utility.

Q. Do I need to involve my Electrical Utility in the installation?
A. Yes. All electrical utilities require pre-approval for private homes to set up grid tie systems. Your power company will provide a list of requirements to validate the equipment meets national standards. The 1.2kW Grid Tied Solar System meets all national standards for grid tied power systems. Your licensed electrician will answer any questions. Most utility companies support grid tied systems.

Be sure to visit Potterhill’s upcoming model to view solar panels in action at our Northwind community.  Potterhill Homes is Cincinnati’s leader in energy savings for new homes. 

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About the author

Carolyn Rolfes is the President of Potterhill Homes. And she's also a Rolfes - as in daughter of Dan Rolfes, the infamous Red Tag Man of Holiday Homes. So what does that say about Carolyn and who she is? Plenty. When you grow up the daughter of man who does commercials in his red underwear, you have no choice but to have a great sense of humor and humility from a very young age. Carolyn and Dan founded Potterhill Homes in 2001 and she has grown it to be one of the most successful home builders in Cincinnati. Home building is in her blood and she has a keen awareness of what consumers look for in a new home and how to deliver value at all levels. And while we don't make Carolyn dress up in green underwear for our commercials, we bet she would if we asked!

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About Potterhill Homes

Cincinnati-based Potterhill Homes is a premier builder of affordable, environmentally friendly homes in Greater Cincinnati. Our homes are built with traditional Cincinnati architectural styles and are perfect for both urban infill and suburban development. To learn more about Potterhill Homes,visit www.potterhillhomes.com.


About the authors

Carolyn Rolfes is the President of Potterhill Homes. And she's also a Rolfes - as in daughter of Dan Rolfes, the infamous Red Tag Man of Holiday Homes. So what does that say about Carolyn and who she is? Plenty. When you grow up the daughter of man who does commercials in his red underwear, you have no choice but to have a great sense of humor and humility from a very young age. Carolyn and Dan founded Potterhill Homes in 2001 and she has grown it to be one of the most successful home builders in Cincinnati. Home building is in her blood and she has a keen awareness of what consumers look for in a new home and how to deliver value at all levels. And while we don't make Carolyn dress up in green underwear for our commercials, we bet she would if we asked!