SolarGaines Blog

Have we done enough to improve energy generation and clean up the planet?

December 16, 2015 by SolarGaines

According to a recent article in GTM (Green Tech Media) "the IEA calculated that the world is still on course for a temperature increase of 2.7 degrees celsius -- significantly above the 2-degree increase considered to be the threshold of dangerous warming. 'A major course correction is still required,' according to the report."

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Filed Under: Miscellaneous

Solar Cheaper Than Fossil Fuels

September 09, 2015 by SolarGaines

The total "cost-of-production" of solar modules have dropped 60% from 2011 to 2014. Reduction in processing costs and a lower price of polysilicon, a main component in solar panels, were the primary causes for the recent dip in prices and led to solar now being cost-competitive with fossil fuels. For the first time in recent history, solar is as cheap an energy source as fossil fuels.

But prices for solar are not done falling. By 2017, the cost of solar is expected to drop another 40 percent, according to Deutsche Bank analysts (Source Cleantechnica). But can the same be said for fossil fuels?

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Filed Under: Commercial Solar, Residential Solar

Intermittence? Nothing to worry about.

September 02, 2015 by SolarGaines

When talking about solar energy oil and coal companies throw around the word 'intermittent' a lot.

They claim intermittence is a major barrier that poses too many insurmountable challenges for solar to be a truly viable source of public energy.  However, those claims of intermittence are grossly exaggerated.

Here’s what intermittence really is, and why you shouldn’t let it scare you away from solar.

What Is Intermittence?

Simply put, the expression 'intermittence' in relation to solar power means that the panels don’t produce a smooth level of energy all day and night.

The amount of energy produced by solar panels varies from a substantial amount during peak hours, such as at noon, to no energy at all produced during the night.

While this is true, it essentially means nothing for you.

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

How to Avoid Grid Outages With Solar

August 28, 2015 by SolarGaines

Power outages are on the rise thanks to frequent extreme weather, a growing population, and an aging infrastructure. In the last 15 years alone, outages increased six-fold, with June, July, and August experiencing the highest rate of outages. To top it all off, recent research discovered that one in three utility companies took more than a day to restore power to its customers, and one in ten took more than a week

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

Title: How Solar Can Help Launch Your Business

July 30, 2015 by SolarGaines

There are many rewards to owning your own business. For one, it’s something you love to do, whether it is helping animals, selling shoes, or making fuzzy bunny slippers with googly eyes.

But the sad reality is approximately 44 percent of businesses fail within the first three years.  And that’s not just the businesses that are based on bad ideas.

One of the major reasons businesses fail is lack of capital.  They simply don't earn enough to cover operation costs, such as rent, merchandise costs, and utilities.

Smart and successful entrepreneurs pay attention to the numbers.  They find a way to reduce even the fixed costs so that overhead doesn't overwhelm revenues and shut them down.

Once upon a time, legendary businessmen achieved this by saving scraps of paper, keeping a close eye on postage stamps and making sure no one touched the thermostat. 

In today's day and age, it's possible to not only reduce expensive electrical usage at the office, in some cases it can be eliminated all together.  That's right, you can keep your business running at peak efficiency and still eliminate electric bills.

The reason is solar.

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Filed Under: Commercial Solar

Why Solar Is Your Best Option

July 28, 2015 by SolarGaines

Fifty years ago, you didn’t have a lot of options when it came to generating electricity. There was coal, gas and some hydro. Though harnessing the wind for power has been around for hundreds of years, not a lot of people were using it (except for the Dutch because they’re awesome). But half a century ago, photovoltaics were in their infancy. Today electricity is produced using coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear, wind, hydro and, most important, solar.

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

5 Reasons Marylanders Need to Install Solar This Year

February 24, 2015 by SolarGaines

Have you been interested in installing a solar energy system in your home or business, but have always found a reason to wait? Now is the time to act. Many of the reasons for waiting no longer apply. Considering these five solar energy facts may convince you that this is the year to go solar.

1. Technology Development Is Incremental
In the past, solar panel efficiency improved by leaps and bounds. Each new generation of solar panels were significantly better than the previous generation. You had a good reason to wait for the next generation technology to hit the market. It would certainly be more efficient than what was available.

This is no longer true. The technology development has slowed, and while the technology will continue to improve, the system you install this year will be competitive with new systems in for the foreseeable future.

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

Is Solar Leasing a Rooftop Ripoff?

February 09, 2015 by SolarGaines

There are already a lot of questions about solar power, but when you add solar leasing to those questions, it raises an entirely new set of concerns. The cost of installation is still an expense that can sometimes be a determining factor for many when they consider getting solar panels, even though the cost savings over the long run would be more than worth the initial investment. There are some who have chosen to rent solar panels, which is at best a questionable practice. The only initial savings is marginal to existing cost of utlities, a cost that is not a savings in the long run.

The solar industry has been growing exponentially over the last decade as both the federal and state governments have programs and tax credits. Whenever there is this kind of growth there are going to be companies that try to take advantage of consumers. To make sure you are not duped by a company that promises far more than it delivers, you need to understand several aspects of the business.

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

Study shows home values increase when solar panels are installed

February 04, 2015 by SolarGaines

People who invest in solar photovoltaic (PV) systems have many reasons for doing so. Some want to be part of the renewable energy movement. Others want to save on energy costs for decades to come. Still others want to take advantage of the excellent return on making a solar investment.

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Filed Under: Residential Solar

5 reasons solar power benefits your small business

December 02, 2014 by SolarGaines

1) The Only Capital Investment That Will Generate An Attractive ROI

Now more than ever, companies must be careful to allocate their capital between investments that will provide the maximum return. From an ROI perspective, an investment in commercial solar panels can be best returns of any capital investment your company makes. When analyzing such metrics as net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR) and payback period, few other capital investments can match solar.

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Filed Under: Commercial Solar

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