Home Solar FAQ

Home Solar FAQ from HelioPower

Don’t let your home solar questions go unanswered. See HelioPower’s Home Solar FAQ below answers to the most common questions regarding home solar energy systems.
If the answer to your question is not shown here, a helpful HelioPower Solar Energy Consultant is available at 1.877.959.8816 to assist you.

Can I add battery backup to my solar electricity system?

Yes.  Battery backup systems need to be carefully designed to integrate with your system and handle your electricity load in the event of a cutover.  They are not easy to engineer or install and should not be attempted by inexperienced contractors.  Please call us today if you’d like to consider a battery backup.

How does having a PV system affect my utility billing?

You enter into what is known as a “Net Metering” contract with your utility. The utility continues to read your meter monthly. However, instead of sending you a monthly bill, they send you a statement showing your credits and debits. Your bill is settled annually on your anniversary date.

Does the system use batteries?

No, the system does not store electricity. If you are producing more power than you are using, your meter spins backwards. If you are consuming more than you are producing, your meter spins forwards. In the summer, your meter will spin backwards more often than during the winter.

What kind of maintenance does the system need?

A solar system has no moving parts but it is not maintenance free. It is an electricity generating system and therefore requires regular maintenance and service.  The PV modules should be cleaned when dirty and output should be checked to see if the system is degrading in any way.  If you suspect a problem, please call us and we will come out and perform a thorough inspection. HelioPower offers complete solar maintenance services as well as panel cleaning services, solar asset field acceptance tests, and performance optimization.  You can also shop solar maintenance services from HelioPower online.

How much space does the system use?

A 400kWh/month system uses less than 300 sq ft.

Can I completely eliminate my electric bill?

There is a minimum fee to remain connected to the grid, usually about $.17/day or less than $6/month.

How big of a system do I need?

It depends on how much energy you want to generate.

You may choose to either:

  1. Completely cover the load and we will review 12 months worth of bills to more accurately calculate system size, or
  2. Employ a peak shaving strategy where we calculate the system size required to eliminate the most expensive rate tiers on your bill.

How long does it take to install?

It depends on the size of your system. Typically 3 to 5 days.

How does it mount to my roof?

The systems we use add a nominal load of under 3 lbs/sq ft to your roof. Roof penetrations are sealed and double flashed and backed by HelioPower’s 10 year warranty.  Everything is thoroughly attached directly to rafters for additional strength.  Everything is thoroughly sealed from water with Sikaflex.

How long is the warranty?

PV Modules 25 year performance warranty. Everything else 10 years. Customers who choose SunRun enjoy a 20 year warranty with full maintenance and panel cleanings.