Award Winning Solar Energy Installation

Home >> Residential >> Massachusetts >> Pittsfield >> How Much Do Solar Panels Cost

Renewable
Rebates
In Home Energy Audit
Affordable Pricing

Going Solar Is Now Affordable

Our Experienced Solar Consultants Help You Design The Perfect Solution

From examining your current eletrical usage and costs to assisting with the correct financing plan, you will receive a custom designed solar energy plan which suits you and your family.

What Our Customers are Saying



"We found all of the employees with whom we in contact from the sales representative to the installers to be knowledgeable and professional. All our questions were answered satisfactorily which is why we decided panels installed. We were also impressed with the company’s A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau.” – Pat S. – Boston


"Our first two bills were approximately $300.00 less than before and our third bill, just received was down about $250.00 from what we were paying! We think it is fantastic!" - William R. - Waltham MA


"They did a wonderful job on my system and I would recommend them to my family and friends!" - Georg S. - Chicopee MA

I cannot express my gratitude for going forward with solar panels. From the initial meeting to discuss the possibility to the techs who eventually installed them. But most of all, it is the savings we have experienced. That first month was unbelievable. Solar plus our other electric source combined was less than our usual monthly expense. During the summer when our electric usage is higher because of the air conditioning, our monthly expense was still less than what we have paid with past summer usage. And if that’s not enough…our present electricity is primarily supplied by the solar panels. We have been building up a reserve with our other electricity source and will be able to draw from that all winter when our panels wont’t generate as much electricity. It’s a win-win situation that we’re just thrilled over. Having a fixed rate locked in is another great feature for savings.” – Virgil T. – Westport MA

Our Services

Ready To Go Solar?

  • Fully licensed & insured installers
  • Custom tailored solutions
  • Free in home consultations
  • Easy financing options
  • 20 year warranty
  • Transparent contracts
  • Eco-friendly
  • State and federal incentives
  • Roof repair if damaged during installation
  • Customer service is our top priority

About Solar Energy

Solar power is energy from the sun that is transformed into thermal or electrical energy.

Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant renewable resource source available, and the United States has some of the richest solar resources worldwide. Modern innovation can harness this energy for a variety of usages, consisting of producing electricity, supplying light or a comfortable interior environment, and heating water for domestic, commercial, or industrial usage.

Solar Benefits

Solar power makes it possible for homeowner to utilize the sun to power everyday life: running your a/c, washing clothing, viewing TELEVISION, cooking supper. All while minimizing your carbon footprint, and without burning nonrenewable fuel sources or putting a pressure on the electrical grid. And while the ecological advantages of solar power are substantial, numerous property owners find that the convenience, unique features, and cost savings of owning a solar power system are much more alluring.

Leading Advantages of Solar Energy

#1 Considerably decrease or even remove your electric bills

Whether you're a property owner, company, or not-for-profit, electrical energy costs can comprise a big portion of your monthly expenses. With a solar panel system, you'll create free power for your system's entire 25+ year lifecycle. Even if you do not produce One Hundred Percent of the energy you take in, solar will reduce your energy costs and you'll still save a lot of loan.

#2 Make a terrific return on your financial investment

Solar panels aren't an expenditure-- they're one of the best ways to invest, with returns equaling those of more conventional financial investments like stocks and bonds. Thanks to significant electrical energy expense cost savings, the typical American house owner settles their solar panel system in seven to eight years and sees an ROI of 20 percent or more.

#3 Secure versus increasing energy expenses

One of the most clear cut benefits of photovoltaic panels is the ability to hedge energy costs. In the past ten years, residential electrical power rates have actually increased by approximately 3 percent yearly. By buying a solar energy system now, you can fix your electricity rate and secure against unforeseeable boosts in electrical energy expenses. If you're a business or house owner with rising and falling cash circulation, going solar likewise helps you better forecast and handle your expenditures.

#4 Boost your house worth

Multiple studies have actually discovered that houses equipped with solar energy systems have greater residential or commercial property worths and sell faster than non-solar houses. Appraisers are increasingly taking solar installations into factor to consider as they value homes at the time of a sale, and as homebuyers become more educated about solar, need for homes geared up with photovoltaic panel systems will continue to grow.

#5 Increase U.S. energy self-reliance

The sun is a near-infinite source of energy and a crucial part of achieving energy self-reliance in the United States. By increasing our capacity to generate electricity from the sun, we can also insulate our country from rate variations in global energy markets.

#6 Develop jobs and assist your local economy

Inning accordance with The Solar Structure, the solar industry included tasks at a rate almost 12 times faster than the general U.S. economy in 2015, representing 1.2 percent of all jobs in the country. This development is expected to continue. Since solar-related jobs have the tendency to be higher paying and can not be contracted out, they are a substantial factor to the U.S. economy.

#7 Safeguard the environment

Solar is an excellent method to decrease your carbon footprint. Structures are responsible for 38 percent of all carbon emissions in the U.S., and going solar can significantly decrease that number. A normal property solar panel system will remove 3 to four lots of carbon emissions each year-- the equivalent of planting over 100 trees every year.

#8 Demonstrate your dedication to sustainability

Sustainability and business social obligation are very important elements of an organization's culture and values. They also produce bottom line outcomes. Significantly, customers and neighborhoods are recognizing and rewarding businesses that opt to run properly. Businesses are finding that "green" credentials are an effective driver of customer buying choices, creating goodwill and improving service outcomes.

#9 Start Conserving from Day 1

Solar purchase power arrangements (PPAs) and solar leasing has actually made it possible for homeowners to go solar for little or no loan down.

Many homeowners opt to fund their solar panels with one of the "pay-as-you-go" financing options. This implies that a third-party business-- the solar provider-- owns the planetary system and looks after setup, upkeep, monitoring and repair works. You merely pay the solar service provider for electricity-- less than you would've paid the utility company.

Since June 2013, 75% of all American houses have access to pay-as-you-go solar.

#10. Solar is a Secure Financial investment

The utility companies are well-known for their fluctuating and unreliable electrical power prices. There is clearly an upward pattern.

With solar panels and easy math, we can calculate how much electrical energy will be generated, and most significantly, at what cost, for a minimum of the next 20 years (repaired energy expenses).

Financing

What are the various payment options?

We have many flexible purchasing agreements for customers who would like to install a new home solar system. There are three different payment options, making them a viable choice for customers of all budgets. The payment options include Lease, PPA, and Purchase.

The Lease

  • Low, fixed payments each month
  • System insurance for 20 years, including maintenance
  • Flexible end-of-term options, including system upgrade, lease extension, and free panel removal

Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)

  • We own the solar panel system
  • $0 down for installation
  • Customers only pay for the solar energy that they use

Purchase

  • Customer pays for the system upfront and owns the system
  • System monitoring and maintenance for 20 years
  • Receive 30% federal tax credit
  • See a return on investment within 7-10 years

What happens when the contract for my lease is finished?

We provide our customers with a few different options for when their lease contract is up. Customers can upgrade their equipment to the newest solar technology available, extend the agreement, or have the panels removed at no cost.

What is the warranty?

The Lease and PPA include a 20-year warranty during the lifetime of the system. This warranty exceeds that of most other solar installers’ warranties.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Properties Of Solar Panels?
Properties Of Solar Panel? I Know This Is Too General,But I Am To Write A Report On The Materials Used To Make Solar Panels,And I Am To Include The Physical, Mechanical ,And Chemical Properties Of The Materials. It'S Just Too General,Such That I Am Lost.There Are So Many Types Of Solar Panels.So I Hope Some Experts On This Subject Can Give Me A General Guide Lines ,Maybe The Tensile Strength ? As Much As You Can Please.

SOLAR PANEL
______________________________

General Information
Solar Cell Circuitry
Solar Cell Layout
Structural Design
Solar Panel Electrical Properties
Solar Array Fabrications
Testing
Assembly
______________________________


SOLAR CELL

The solar cells used on SAPPHIRE are 1.6 inch x 0.8 inch Gallium Arsenide and Germanium substrate cells with cover glass. Both are rated at 15% efficiency, although the Germaniums are supposed to have better efficiencies as well as more resistance to cracks and performance degradation resulting from voltage reverse biasing due to shadowing effects. They are obtained from Crowder College as left overs from another project (very inexpensively). Each cell provides 0.8 Volts open circuits.

They are first inspected for cracks. The cracks are classified into three :

Tranverse cracks : these are bad since the cells are electrically-connected internally in the longitudinal directions. Any severe tranverse cracks can eventually opens and will interrupt this connections thus causing the cell to open.
Longitudinal cracks : although cracks are by-definition bad, cells with this type of cracks are still usable - at least for our purposes since we cannot afford to buy them.
A Combination of the Two Types
Corner cracks : these are somewhat acceptable since the crack is localized and unlikely to propagate.
These cells are then inspected for their ratings that are given by the manufacturers/supplier. The ratings corresponds to how well each cell produces power. The cells that are of the same ratings are best grouped together for optimal performace.

SOLAR CELL CIRCUITRY

The positive terminal of this type of solar cell islocated at one of the short end, also known as the P-Joint. The negative terminal is located on the back side of the cell, at 2 solder spots already pre-tinned with solder.

The cells are connected in series into strings of 20 cells, to produce 16 Volts. While the 16 Volts may seemed to be enough for providing charge voltages required for the battery packs, the cell voltages output actually very sensitive to the temperature at which the cell is operating at. In general, the solar cells and series strings will lose about 0.24% in voltage for each 1 °C increase in operating temperature.

Each of the strings is connected to a diode to prevent power loss in case one of the solar cell string is shorted. The diode will also prevent reverse charging, for example when the solar panel being charged by the battery as the satellite goes into an eclipse, or in case one string has a lower voltage output than the other string(s) on the same solar panel.

SOLAR CELL LAYOUT

The cell layouts on the panels are optimized for the available surface areas. The top and bottom panel each have 4 strings, totalling to 80 cells each, while the six side panels each have 40 cells made up into 2 strings, bringing the total number of cells to 480.

The solar cells are spaced 0.016 inch apart on the long side, and 0.030 inch apart on the short side, conforming with Lockheed-Martin specifications on these type of cells.

STRUCTURE

The panel structures are made of Aluminum-6061. Side panels #2,3,5 and 6, are made of 0.25 inch thick solid Aluminum, while side panels #1 and 4 are made of 0.5 inch thick Aluminum honeycomb. The top and bottom panels consists of 2 parts: the solar panel containing the cells which is made out of 0.063 inch Aluminum sheet, and a structural support panel which is made out of 0.5 inch Aluminum honeycomb.

The outer Aluminum surfaces which will hold the solar cells are overlaid with dielectric material, for electrical insulating purpose. This process is done at Lockheed-Martin facility.

PANEL ELECTRICAL PROPERTIES

Because the operating voltage of SAPPHIRE solar array is low (16 Volts open circuit), Lockheed-Martin engineers felt that there is no need for electrical insulation tests. Normally, this test is done using some sort of liquid which is spread over the dielectric-covered Aluminum panels and applying potential difference, similar to what will be generated by the solar array, between the liquid and the panel. Should there be an exposed area of the panel, a spark will result which will leave a black mark on the light green/blue-colored FM73. The exposed areas revealed on this procedure would then undergo further treatment for electrical insulation.

Extra attention is paid on electrical grounding of honeycomb face sheets. The side solar panels have "ground plugs"to ensure electrical ground connections between each of the side solar panel face Aluminum sheet. The top and bottom panels also employs "ground plugs", connection the inner honeycomb face sheet to the the 0.063 inch thick Aluminum sheet that contains the solar cells. The outer face sheet is connected to the 0.063 inch Aluminum sheet through copper grounding strips.

SOLAR ARRAY FABRICATION

The solar cells are connected one to another using interconnects. The interconnect are custom made by one of Lockheed-Martin’s supplier. The base material of the interconnect is Molybdenum, and it is plated with Silver. The Molybdenum is choosen for its thermal characteristics which matches well with the thermal characteristics of the Ga-As and Ge cells. The Silver plating will ensure the best electrical conductivity.

There are four type of interconnects :

Positive : connects to the positive terminal of the solar cell (which is also known as the P-Joint).
Negative : connects to the negative terminal of the solar cell
Common : which connects the negative terminal of one solar cell, to the positive terminal of the next cell in the string, with both cells being in the same solar cell row.
Turn-around : which connects the negative terminals of one solar cell, to the positive terminal of the next cell in the string, with one cell being in the next row of solar cell.
The interconnects have stress-relief areas to accomodate the expansion and contraction of the cells due to temperature changes.

The interconnects are first soldered to the solar cells. A number of this
sub-assembly is then assembled to make a string. conforming with the cell layout of their respective panels. The assembling processes use a (number of) jig that was custom machined for laying out this specific type of solar cell.

The cell are bonded to the FM73 covered solar panel surface using a controlled volatility RTV supplied by Lockheed-Martin. The RTV would adhere to the area between the 2 negative terminal solder spots on the back of the cell. Once the layout of the cells on a panel is determined. these areas are located on two 10-mils Mylar sheet. These areas are then cut out, forming masks. One of the mask is used to held the prearranged cells, while the other one is used for masking the areas on the FM73 covered solar panel that were not to be glued.

A side note : The Mylar used for this masking process should have been 20-mils thick. This will ensure that enough RTV are present for optimum bonding between the cell and the F-77 covered solar panel surface. However, we have no access to 20-mils Mylar, and this forces us to use 10-mils Mylar. Despite of this, however, SAPPHIRE test solar panel have successfully underwent shake test at Lockheed-Martin facility.

TESTING

Completed solar panels are tested to see how well they perform their power generation. Follow the folliwing link for more info on how we test them :

Solar Panel Testing
If defect(s) is found during these test, those areas will be re-worked. This usually involves removal of the cell identified as "bad" (of course our cells are bad ie. rejected cells already) and putting on "better" ones and hand-soldering its interconnects to the rest of the solar cell string.

ASSEMBLY

This is how SAPPHIRE's solar panel are put on.

Basically all solar panels except Panels 2/3can be put in any order.

The thru-bolts that holds the satellite together is the tighten at the top panel. There is no space on the bottom panel that will allow the feets or the cup-cone assembly to turn. Also the tools used for tightening will come in contact with the bottom solar cells.

Panel 2/3 is put on last, or taken off first. There is very little slack in the cabling of the solar panels, due to launch considerations. Doing so to panel 2/3 will allow access to the other solar panel connectors.
Lastly, take extreme care with solar panels.

What Can I Use These Solar Panels For?
I Carefully Took Apart A Few Old Calculators The Other Day. I Thought I Might Be Able To Salvage The Solar Panels In Them And Make Something Useful. What Can I Make With Them?

Calculator panel are somewhat 000.000000000 (worthless) in percentage. Its like generating something with small ants power instead of man power, means useless.

Will It Really Take Over 30 Years For A Solar Panel To Pay Itself Off?
I'M Looking Into Solar Panels For My House. But When I Run The Figures, It Would Take Forever To Pay Itself Off. Example: 224 Watt Solar Panel X 4.73 Hours/Day (Peak Sunlight Hours Where I'M Located) X 30 Days/Month X 12 Months/Year = 381,427.2 Watt Hours/Year Or 381.4 Kwh/Year. At $.0778/Kwh (In My Area), It Would Only Save Me $29.67/Year. Since This Particular Solar Panels Cost $912, It Would Take Over 30 Years To Pay Itself Off. I Know I Must Compensate For Inflation And Rising Electricity Costs. Also, Other Components Needed For Installation (Inverter, Mounts, Combiner Box) Must Be Considered. Does The Solar Panel Continue To Produce Electricity Outside Of The Peak Sunlight Hours? Can Someone Who Knows More Than Me Please Help Me Make Sense Of All This? How Many Years Will It Really Take To Pay Itself Off? How Much Electricity Will The Solar Panel Actually Produce In A Year?

No. It will never pay off.

Yes, panel will produce outside peak hours. However, your output is too high. While you will get some off peak power, you aren't considering that you won't get peak power because of panel orientation, inclement days, dirt on the panels, etc. Plus, losses from the needed batteries, inverter, etc. You've done a good set of calcs tho, you are in the neighborhood. I expect you are lucky to get $20/year. The maintainance and replacment costs of the batteries alone will be more than that.

Solar is too expensive, that's why it is used so rarely. Better to spend your money on conservation. Use natural light. Improve insulation. More efficient heater/air conditioner when the old one dies. Deciduous trees near the house to shade in summer, let light through in winter. Drop thermostat in winter, raise in summer.

Good luck!

When Was The Solar Panel Invented?

There has been research carried out into the possibility of solar panels since 1839 but it was 1883 before Charles Fritts perfected it. It may have been thought of as a fairly new source of energy but while there are improvements all the time the technology is well over 100 years old

Solar power is becoming much more popular but it will only be really cost effective in very hot and sunny countries. At times there are concerns about the amount of energy that is being used and if solar power could be harnessed more readily the earth’s natural resources would last longer

There is no waste or pollution either and once a panel is fitted it should led to long term savings. As they do not have any moving parts they will last a long time before they need to be replaced. There are no moving parts so there is no need to be concerned that they may break. Add to this the fact they need little doing to look after them.

Although there will clearly be more benefit gained from installing the panels on a large scale it is possible for them to still work on a small scale. A person who just has one panel on their roof will still find a saving in their bills but it will be hard to generate so much that they would be able to let others use. The more people who begin to sort out their own energy the better as it will not just be the amount that they don’t use that help but the fact that it will be an ongoing saving.

Is There Any Way I Can Get Solar Panels With My Restrictions?
I Own A Townhome In The Phoenix Area (My Power Company'S Srp, If That Makes A Difference). Phoenix Is A Great Place For Solar. I Could Probably Save Money, In The Long Term, If I Got Some Solar Panels. But I Am Currently Extremely Broke, So I Can'T Buy Solar Panels Unless I Will More Or Less Immediately Be Paying No More Than I Am Now Per Month, With Little Or Nothing Down. And Most Of The Solar Leasing Places Won'T Work With Me, Because (As Is Common For Townhomes) I Don'T Technically Own My Roof. I Have Permission To Put Things On It, But The Property Management People (Or Whoever Actually Owns My Roof) Won'T Sign The Lease Or Whatever. Anyone Know Of Either A Way To Buy Solar Panels Without Paying Significantly More Per Month Than I Already Do For Electricity, Or A Solar Leasing Company That Can Work With The Restrictions I Have?

There are companies who would install solar panels on your roof for no cost. The catch is that they get the power generated for the first 20 years which is the useful life of the panels then you get what's left of the obsolete panels, meanwhile you're required to purchase your power from them at allegedly reduced rates but there is no guarantee that they would remain reduced versus the market once they have you locked in. It's like how the cell phone companies will give you a free cell phone if you sign a contract.

Keep in mind that once you've factored in the installation costs and the useful life of the panels, the effective costs of solar photovoltaic energy is about 23 cents to 43 cents a kwh while grid power is about 15 cents per kwh to the consumer, 3 cents per kwh to the utilities for coal generation. It's just that so few people understand how to project an initial capital expense with periodic future returns through discounted cash flow, hence people think solar power is free out of ignorance. Without government incentives, there are no economic benefits to solar and most solar installers structure the sales such that they gain the economic benefit instead of the consumer who is often ignorant of how to calculate the financials.

We Serve All of Pittsfield MA including these zip code areas:

01201, 01202, 01203