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Dispelling the 5 most common solar myths

Solar is soaring in popularity in the United States as more organizations realize its benefits, but there are still some misconceptions about this technology. We shine some light on the truth below.

The number of new solar photovoltaic (PV) installations continues to surge nationwide as organizations realize the many benefits of turning sunshine into energy savings and revenue. Despite the expectation that total installed U.S. PV capacity is projected to more than double over the next five years, there are still some common misconceptions about solar technology.

Here are 5 common myths, along with the facts to support them. Are any of these following solar myths preventing your organization from benefiting from sustainable, cost-effective solar energy?

Myth 1: Going solar is too expensive

10 years ago, you’d have been right. But today, the dropping costs of system materials makes solar energy an affordable option for organizations—often outperforming traditional grid electricity in cost and predictability. You can structure your solar investment to achieve a consistent cost over years to come, eliminating your exposure to changes in energy costs over time. With solar, you can lock in an electricity rate at a price substantially lower than from your utility company.

Moreover, many state and federal incentives, including the 30% Business Energy Investment Tax Credit (ITC), lower the cost of your solar installation even further. Some incentives allow your organization to transform solar into an additional revenue stream for your business, maximizing your solar investment. We can help you navigate those incentives to find the best opportunities for your business.

In addition, businesses don’t need large amounts of capital handy in order to go solar. Many financing options exist—from loans to leases to PPAs—that allow businesses to go solar with no upfront capital investment.

Myth 2: Our facility doesn’t get enough sunshine—solar won’t work

A lot of businesses wrongly believe their properties don’t receive enough sunshine—or at least enough to make solar a worthwhile investment. However, according to National Geographic, enough sunlight hits Earth every hour to power the world’s electricity needs for an entire year.

In other words, solar energy works incredibly well, no matter where your facility is located. This explains why many of our customers end up receiving $0 utility bills month after month—some even receive negative bills because their solar installations generate too much clean electricity. Because our expert solar team maximized their available space for solar and custom-designed a system specific to their site needs, our customers know that their site is harnessing the most sunlight possible to power their business needs.

What about cloudy or cool climates?

When it comes to solar energy, direct sunlight is best (obviously). But even on the cloudiest days, solar panels will continue generating clean, efficient electricity. This is because:

  • Visible light still gets through (which is why you’re able to see)
  • UV light comes through (which is why some people get sunburned on overcast days)
  • Infrared light gets through (which is why you still feel warm on cloudy, summer days)

Contrary to popular belief, solar PV technology works best in colder temperatures. This inverse relationship between temperature and performance partially explains why Germany and Ontario have enjoyed such success with solar energy—as well as our customers in New England.

Myth 3: Solar energy only powers your facility during the day

While it is true that your solar panels will not generate electricity after the sun sets, a Solar and Storage solution provides value to your business operations at all hours through optimization.

Combining solar with storage results in an integrated solution where solar-generated electricity is stored onsite for later use. This solution provides relief from ever-increasing demand charges and reduces energy spend when it is at its most expensive during peak hours, as your facility can draw electricity from your stored solar energy as opposed to the grid during peak times.

There is an additional way of “storing” daytime solar electricity—net metering.

With net metering, you’re allowed to feed excess solar electricity into the utility grid during the day—at a profit. When you need power at night, you simply buy back the electricity you need. In other words, the utility company pays you for the privilege of storing your clean solar power.

Myth 4: Solar technology is constantly improving, so it’s better to wait.

This is true for any technology, not just solar.

However, solar technology is built to last for decades—so the system you install today will still be performing years from now, especially when you partner with Centrica Business Solutions and secure your investment with our industry-leading Production Guarantee and Workmanship Warranty combined with the support of our Customer Care team.

In addition, when you select Centrica Business Solutions to design, install, and maintain your system, you can rest assured that your system is comprised of the highest-quality equipment from Tier 1 manufacturers—components that are built to last.

Myth 5: Going solar is a lot of work and will take time away from daily business operations.

This is the easiest of all the myths to dispel. Our experienced solar team offers customized service that delivers the very best in everything – from designing your system, to the professional and safe installation of your system, to the customer care and optimization after your system has been turned on:

  • Optimization services to create a revenue stream from your system
  • Affordable, competitive pricing
  • A custom-designed system
  • Professional installation process
  • Tier 1 system components
  • Maximized system production and electricity savings
  • Competitive production guarantees and workmanship warranties
  • Support for the lifetime of your PV system

Learn more about the benefits of our Solar and Storage solution for your business.