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Solar Power 101 and Why We Chose it for Our Own Home

At Nautilus Construction, we have had many customers lately inquiring about whether Solar Power is the right decision for their home. It is a big decision for any homeowner.

When Chris and I built our own home last summer, we also considered whether Solar Power would be a good option. We contacted Maine Solar Solutions (MSS) for a free Solar Site Assessment. The amazing staff helped us figure out what was right for our home.

Chris and I really valued the idea of reducing our own carbon emissions and carbon footprint. We also were aware of the rising cost of electricity in Maine. We were interested in lowering our electricity bill and the 30% tax credit which expires in 2032 was also appealing. We wanted to add value to our home and Solar Panels were an excellent investment.

For us, all the boxes were checked for YES for Solar Power! After the assessment, from MSS ,they were able to give us a plan that worked for our individual budget and new home. We went with 20 grid tied Solar Panels on the Southeast side of our roof (shown in picture).

Grid Tied Solar Panels indicate that we get some electricity from Solar Power, but we are also tied to “The Grid,” for us this Is Kennebunk Light and Power. For most Maine families, it would be Central Maine Power. This allows us to still have power when the sun is not shining or its nighttime.

Maine Solar Solutions gave me a basic step by step guide for how our grid tied Solar Panels would work. They are:

  1. Solar Panels convert energy from the Sun into Direct Current (DC) electricity.
  2. That DC electricity travels to an inverter where it is converted into Alternating Current (AC) electricity for our home.
  3. The inverter delivers the AC electricity to our electrical panel, where it is distributed to electrical loads throughout our home.
  4. Our home uses the solar produced electricity but still has access to electricity from “The Grid” (KLPD for us) during high demand or at night.
  5. When our system produces more electricity than our home is using, the excess Solar electricity is exported back to “The Grid”. We receive a credit for the excess power on our electricity bill. We also receive the 30% tax credit for Solar Installation that the State of Maine applies to our Federal Income Taxes.

“On average, MSS says, a home in Maine with Solar has a payback period of 7-10 years. Once your system is paid for you might enjoy 19-25 years of nearly free electricity.”

This August, Chris and I will have lived in our new home for one year. So far, we have found the Solar Panels effective and easy. Overall, the Solar Power gives us a feeling we are doing something good for our children’s generation, for our planet and even doing a solid for our own wallets. Maine Solar Solutions can be contacted at 207-871-7191.