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What happens to solar panels when they no longer work?

What happens to solar panels when they no longer work?

Solar panels are made to last. Barring damage from natural disasters or accidents, modern solar panels have an expected lifetime of 25-30 years, and some of the first commercially-available panels have crossed that milestone and are still operating almost as well as they did when new. Nearly all solar panels in the world were installed after 2009, and come with a guarantee that they'll produce at least 80% of their rated power output after 25 years. Most panels on the market will do better than that, producing about 85% of...
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Tesla solar roofs are real, but are they spectacular?

Tesla solar roofs are real, but are they spectacular?

Photo credit: @toblerhaus Tesla's solar roof tiles were introduced in October of 2016, creating a frenzy of analysis and discussion in the solar industry and on solar-focused websites like this one. Perhaps more importantly, though, images of the sleek solar roofs captured the imagination and interest of homeowners all across the country, who've been focused on one question ever since: When will these thing become available to buy? Now, a year and a half later, the first installations of the revolutionary solar shingles are starting to go up on houses...
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How your utility company can make it harder to go solar

How your utility company can make it harder to go solar

In states with clear net metering policies, utility companies have to credit home solar owners for every kilowatt-hour (kWh) their systems produce. But in places without net metering, utilities can set their own rules that determine how much those owners will be reimbursed for solar electricity sent to the grid, as well as the monthly fees they charge. Without net metering, different utility companies can charge different rates, you could end up paying a lot more for basic electrical service after installing solar panels, which means some of the savings...
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How to claim the Federal 30% tax credit for installing solar

How to claim the Federal 30% tax credit for installing solar

UPDATED FOR 2019! (2018 filing year) It's that time of year again—tax time! But this year is different, because this was the year you installed solar panels on your home (or qualifying property), and now you're ready to get that big fat tax credit to take 30% right off the top of that expense. And we're here to help guide you through the process! And hey—if you're reading this and haven't yet installed solar, you only have a couple more years to get this sweet tax credit. 30% off the...
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5 reasons you shouldn’t worry about the new solar tariffs

5 reasons you shouldn’t worry about the new solar tariffs

Photo credit: Douglas Hutchings We've covered this extensively over the past few months, but it bears repeating: Homeowners have little to fear from the recently-announced tariffs that will increase the cost of newly-imported solar panels from certain foreign countries by 30% this year. Here's why it isn't a big deal for homeowners: 1. The tariff increase amounts to a tiny percentage of the cost to install solar A recent study from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), pegged the average costs of installing a home solar system at $2.80 per...
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Donald Trump’s solar tariff isn’t so bad for people considering home solar

Donald Trump’s solar tariff isn’t so bad for people considering home solar

Following the recommendations of the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), which found in October 2017 that imports of inexpensive foreign-made solar panels have caused substantial harm to U.S. solar manufacturers, President Donald Trump has decided to enact steep tariffs on imported solar panels. That sentence might sound scary, and there are certainly a lot of scary headlines out there about how Trump is killing the larger U.S. solar industry by helping struggling manufacturers, but don't panic. Yes it's true that the solar industry employs hundreds of thousands of people, most...
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The blockchain might lower your electric bill by 38%

The blockchain might lower your electric bill by 38%

Someday soon, your electric utility company could be... everyone else. That's the dream of a company called Grid+, which likes to imagine a future with an automated, distributed energy grid, where everyone produces, stores, consumes, and shares electricity; all run by the company's smart devices and software, of course. According to the company, this futuristic energy marketplace is a few years off, so for their first trick, they're going to try something else: reducing your energy bill by more than one-third. How Grid+ uses blockchain technology to lower your energy...
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Installing solar on your home is like creating a small, mature forest

Installing solar on your home is like creating a small, mature forest

The image above does not lie. Installing a 5-kW solar system eliminates as much carbon pollution as 5.6 acres of mature trees. It's like waving your magic solar wand and spontaneously creating a new forest. Solar energy replaces electricity from the utility company, which comes from a mix of fossil fuels, nuclear, and renewables. Utility energy represents a great deal of greenhouse gas pollution that comes from mining and burning fuels, transporting and processing raw materials, and building and operating power plants. As we can hopefully all agree, more greenhouse...
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Which company has the best solar panel warranty, and what does it cover?

Which company has the best solar panel warranty, and what does it cover?

If you've spent any time looking at our financial projections for solar in your state, you may have noticed that we look at the energy bill savings you can expect for 25 years after installation. That 25-year timeline wasn't just plucked out of thin air: it's the length of time over which most manufacturers guarantee their solar panels will produce electricity. But that 25-year production warranty is just the beginning. Unlike most big appliance purchases, a solar installation will have up to 3 or 4 various warranties and guarantees each...
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5 Reasons to be thankful for solar power

5 Reasons to be thankful for solar power

It's Thanksgiving, 2017, and despite the turmoil in our country and our world, we have a lot to be thankful for. We at Solar Power Rocks sincerely hope you have the comfort of family, home, and loved ones this holiday season, and maybe also that you have solar panels on your roof. If you don't quite have that last part covered, yet, perhaps it's time to compare quotes for a solar installation for your home. Anyway, here's why we're thankful for solar this year: 1. Solar can help us overcome...
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Last modified: December 7, 2018

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