- What size system should I put on my home?
The system you should choose for your home depends on how much power you consume, and what percentage of your consumption you would like to generate through solar energy. There are other considerations as well; such as the available space for panels, and the load your electrical panel can carry. A good start is to look at your NS Power bill which tells you the power you have consumed in the last year, and then contact us
about what size system will work best for you. Ideally, the annual production of the system should be about the same as your power consumption.
- How do I know if my roof is suitable?
We will do a preliminary assessment of your home to ensure its suitability, but if it faces to the south (optimal), or to the east or west or somewhere in between, and is unobstructed it should be a good candidate for solar panels. Other things to consider are age and condition, as well as the pitch.
- Do the solar panels need to go on the roof, or is there somewhere else I can put them?
No, they don’t need to be on the roof. If you have an unobstructed area on your property it may be a great place to install solar panels.
- How long does the system last? Will it be as effective its entire life span, or will the amount of power it creates reduce over time?
Solar PV systems are warrantied for 25 years, but have a lifespan of more than 30 years. Our systems have a degredation factor of less than 0.6% per year.
- What happens at night?
The electricity your panels generate during the day goes into the NS Power grid, and you draw it off the grid when you need it. This is called net-metering.
- Do I need to contact Nova Scotia Power?
We’ll submit the application on your behalf when the time comes, but if you have specific questions you can certianly contact the net-metering department. You can get more information on net-metering here
- Can NS Power stop offering net metering?
No, but the Electricity Plan Implementation Act of 2015 said that at some point (to be determined by the provincial Energy Minister), NS Power can pay less for electricity delivered to its grid from solar systems than it charges for electricity drawn from its grid. The Energy Ministry expects this to be a number of years in the future, and the Electricity Act says that existing installations at that time are guaranteed 25 years of net metering with NS Power on the same terms we have today.
- Do I have to be connected to the NS Power grid?
Electricity production from solar panels is very high in the spring/summer/fall but is fairly low in the winter so being on the grid is pretty essential for the winter unless you have some other way of generating power or storing power long term.
- What happens in the winter, will snow stay on the panels?
Solar panels are smooth so snow doesn’t stick to them like it does to shingles. They are dark in colour and absorb sunlight, so when the sun shines, the panels heat up and the snow slides off. If there is a lot of accumulation and little sunlight for a period of time snow may build up on them, and you may want to look at safely removing it in order to achieve better production.
- What happens if my panels are damaged?
Solar panels are built to resist relatively extreme weather conditions. If you have a comprehensive homeowner's insurance policy, the system will be insured against damage as part of your property.