Choosing the right Puerto Rico solar system for your home or business can seem like a daunting task. There are many important factors you must consider when deciding on your home or business needs. Whether you are new to the island or you have lived in paradise your entire life, adding a solar system to your property is a smart move. Puerto Rico is known for many things, including its amazing weather. Adding a solar system is just another way for you to get more enjoyment from the tropical climate.
Unfortunately, sunny days and amazing people aren’t the only things Puerto Rico is known for. The island has notoriously high electricity prices. In fact, the average home in Puerto Rico pays over double in electricity costs compared to the average US homeowner. Additionally, the shaky electrical grid often experiences nearly daily blackouts that can last for hours in some locations.
Sadly, these problems increased after the island experienced the worst hurricane in 100 years. The storm left areas of the island without electricity for over 9 months. If this sounds like a nightmare scenario to you, you’re not alone. Thankfully, many people on the island have taken the necessary steps to secure that they are never again left in the dark.
There are now more solar options than ever before. Additionally, improvements in the manufacturing processes of the core components of these systems have lowered the prices significantly. Now, anyone can break free from the unreliable electrical grid and start enjoying clean, renewable, Puerto Rico solar today. Here are 10 things to consider before adding a Puerto Rico solar system.
How Much Will a Puerto Rico Solar System Cost?
To determine the price of your Puerto Rico solar system, you will first need to figure out exactly what you want to power with solar energy. Do you want to run your entire home or business off of a solar system, or do you want to reduce your electric bill but still utilize the grid for some of your power needs?
The first step to determining your property’s power needs is to examine a copy of last month’s electric bill. Locate the part that lists your kWh usage for the month. Importantly, it should also show your usage over the previous months as well. This data will help you to get a better understanding of how your energy consumption fluctuates over the year. You want to consider these fluctuations because they are caused by high-energy products such as air conditioners, pools, fridges, and other items you may deem essential to power with your new Puerto Rico solar system.
Supplement Your Home With a Puerto Rico Solar System
For example, if you are looking to supplement your home electricity with solar, you can purchase a 5-kilowatt-hour system for around $10,000. On average, a home in Puerto Rico uses around 800 kWh per month. Consequently, you will drop your overall grid reliance down to 200 kWh per month. This will provide you with significant savings and give you the ability to keep your core home activities active during the all too common, power outages the island experiences.
If you are looking to break free from the shackles of the power company completely, your system is going to be a bit more expensive. You will likely need additional batteries, and other components to ensure your home stays powered throughout the year. You may also require additional panels or batteries to power items such as pool pumps or large freezers. The good news is, once your system is active, there is nothing like running your home on clean renewable energy. No bills, and no power outages.
Does it Matter Where I Live in Puerto Rico?
Yes, the location of your home will play an important role in determining key aspects of your system’s layout. While geographically, Puerto Rico isn’t huge, it does encompass a variety of different terrains. For example, you may find that you get better access to the sun if you live on a southward facing mountain versus a northward facing side. Additionally, southern areas such as Ponce receive less rain throughout the year compared to cities such as Mayaguez. This translates to more energy production from your panels due to more light exposure.
Will I Need a New Roof to Add Puerto Rico Solar?
The type of roof you have can play a huge role in the overall cost of your Puerto Rico solar system project. If you have a home with a flat concrete roof, that has open access to the sun, you are in the best-case scenario. In this situation, installers can mount your panels directly to your roof using universal panel mounts.
Problems arise when your roof is Spanish tiles or other expensive and not sturdy materials. In the case of tiles, which is by far one of the most popular types of roofs in Puerto Rico, you have two options. Your first option is to mount the panels to the tiles using special mounts. This strategy looks the cleanest but adds considerable costs to your project. Also, tiles are brittle, and there is no doubt installers will inevitably crack a few while they work. The second option, and a more popular choice, is to build a structure for your new Puerto Rico solar system.
Adding another structure for your solar system can be one of the best ways to ensure you maximize your solar exposure. When you add a structure specifically to mount your panels, you gain the ability to customize exactly the angle at which the panels catch the light. In this way, you can convert the maximum amount of light per day into electricity. The downside of this approach is, of course, added costs and delays in the completion of the project.
What Happens if My Panels Produce More Energy Than Needed?
There are two scenarios encountered when your system produces more power than you need. Depending on how your system is set up, you may be able to send that power back to the electrical company. This is known as Net Metering. When you net meter electricity, the electrical company will provide you with a credit for all the energy your system shared. Opposingly, if you have a completely off-grid system, your extra energy will go into storage bank batteries. These batteries are what keeps your home’s electricity running during times when the panels are inactive, such as night.
How Long is the Warranty on a Puerto Rico Solar System?
Every manufacturer has a different warranty for their product. However, the most reputable solar panels will include a 20+ year factory warranty. In most instances, this warranty covers manufacturer defaults such as cracking, clouding, or no power production. The other components of your system such as batteries or invertors will have smaller coverage periods. On average a battery will include at least 10 years of protections. Importantly, General Maintenance provides a 100% warranty on all Puerto Rico solar system labor.
How Important is it to Choose the Right Puerto Rico Solar Installation Company?
Considering the overall costs of a solar system, it’s important to find the right installation crew for the job. You will want to go with a reliable source that has a strong web presence. In this way, you can verify the business using Google. Be sure to check out their ratings and customer feedback. The best installers will have a strong reputation and will be responsive to your concerns.
Is there an Alternative to Buying Solar Panels?
There are many alternative ways to lower your electrical costs that don’t include adding a solar system. You may find that for whatever reason, your home is not well-suited to solar. When this is the case, you can look into other forms of renewable energy such as wind, geothermal, or water-powered systems. Each of these systems has its advantages and disadvantages to consider. Importantly, solar is the most affordable option in the market at the moment.
What if I Move?
You may wonder what will happen to your solar investment if you decide to move. Importantly, the cost of your solar system raises the value of your home. As you could imagine, adding a solar system to your property in an area that pays almost triple the average electricity costs is a huge plus. Remember, homeowners will always show preference to a solar-powered property over a traditional grid home. You can also choose to move your system to your new location. General Maintenance can help you to safely and securely remove the system and reinstall it at your new location.
Puerto Rico Solar
Now that you understand the key factors to consider before choosing your next Puerto Rico solar system, you are ready to enjoy a more secure, and cleaner energy alternative. Contact General Maintenance today to receive a free quote, and stop paying criminally high electrical bills.