Replacing Your Roof? Harness the Power of Starlight…Go Solar!
There’s nothing quite like the feeling of warm sunlight on your face at the end of a long, cold winter. Conversely, there’s nothing quite like the feeling of opening a big utility bill at the end of a long, cold winter!
The warmth you sense on a few square inches of your cheeks is just a hint of what the sun’s energy can do. Just think how much unharnessed solar energy is reaching the exponentially greater surface area of your roof every day.
If you’re having your roof replaced, why not put the sun – and your roof – to work for you, all year round?
Types of Solar Systems
Sunlight offers a free, clean, and infinite supply of energy that can reduce hydro or heating costs in broad range of residential and commercial applications. There are two common types of solar systems: Photovoltaic and Hydronic
Photovoltaic (PV) systems use panel arrays with numerous photovoltaic cells to generate electricity from sunlight. Other system components connect the PV panels directly to your building’s electrical system, or in some instances, to batteries for storage. In many cases, your PV system can be connected to the electrical power grid to bring in income from surplus electricity generated by your system!
Hydronic systems use panel arrays that circulate sunlight-heated fluids through a system that harnesses thermal energy for household heating or domestic hot water. Solar hydronic installations are generally used to provide supplementary heat for systems employing boilers and hydronic hot water tanks.
Is solar a good option for me?
A qualified installer can help determine if solar is practical for you, but here are some basic questions to ask yourself:
- Does your building have a south-facing slope or flat roof?
- Is your roof free of major obstructions (e.g., trees, tall buildings – existing or yet to be built) that would block sunlight?
- Does your location get enough hours of sunlight/clear days?
- Do you want to generate heat (hydronic system) or generate electricity (photovoltaic system)?
- Are you eligible for rebates or funding?
Save on installation costs
Installation costs can vary greatly depending on the type and energy output of the system, as well as the type of roof on which it’s installed. Fortunately, there are rebates and funding programs (e.g. through Ontario’s Green Energy Act) available for many installations. Linking a PV system to the power grid can further offset installation costs. Your contractor can help identify many of these opportunities to save you money.
Not a do-it-yourself project
In addition to the specialized technical know-how required to install a new roof and efficient solar system, there are numerous risks of property damage or personal injury – from falls to working with electricity (and possibly the power grid) or hydronic systems.
Leave it to the pros
A qualified contractor can assess your situation and install an integrated roof and solar energy solution tailored to your specific needs – leaving you free to enjoy those sunny days more than ever before…don’t forget the sunscreen!
Tags: Photovoltaic, Re-Roofing, Replacement, Roof, Solar Energy, Solar Panels, Sun