The Solar Blog

/The Solar Blog/

The Solar Company Partners With Football Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott

Castro Valley, Ca – The Solar Company is happy to announce a new partnership with Hall of Fame football player, Ronnie Lott. Lott and his wife Karen had a 26kW system installed on their Bay Area home which helps them save money on electricity while showing their commitment to living a greener life. “After my experience with The Solar Company, I can tell you that I’ve joined a winning team” expressed Lott.  Lott’s enthusiasm for switching to solar and his positive experience with The Solar Company has led to an endorsement deal. Mark and Christina Danenhower, owners of The Solar Company commented,”We are very excited to have this partnership with Ronnie and Karen Lott. And it’s so great to see [...]


Should I Wait for Solar Power Technology to Improve?

Should I wait? That is what most people ask themselves when thinking about whether or not they should switch to solar. However, the real question they should be asking themselves is: how soon do I want to start saving money? Installing solar power on your home is one step further into the renewable energy direction and also one step closer to keeping your wallet full. But is current solar technology good enough to use now or should you wait until newer technology comes out? We’ll answer your question with a more important one: why wait? Why the hesitation when solar can be saving you money? There will always be newer technology and newer versions of everything, from computers to toasters, so you may [...]


Can I Fix a Cracked Solar Panel?

Unfortunately, you cannot fix a cracked solar panel. Although there are many internet sites that claim you can, the chemical reactions that occur within the photovoltaic panels we install on your home require properly and completely sealed cells to allow for maximum performance of your system. Once moisture enters your panel after it has cracked, it is: 1. Unlikely able to be removed completely and 2. Can lead to possible corrosion within the panel and even further damage to your system. Prevention and maintenance of your solar panels is key to maximizing benefits when using solar power to avoiding unfix-able damage. Keeping your panels clean is a good idea that helps ensure that the greatest amount of light can be [...]


Can Solar Panels Work at Night?

During the day, the sun shines brightly and solar panels get busy absorbing rays and generating electricity. But what happens when the sun goes down? Can solar panels work at night? Even though solar panels are not actively producing much at night (maybe just a little bit if the moon is bright enough), appliances are still getting power in your home. How? Your home is connected to a utility grid. Think of the grid like a giant bank that you can draw power from or even deposit power to from your solar power system. During the day, extra power that your system produces but doesn’t use gets sent back into the electric grid that everyone shares. Your utility company will [...]


California Solar Growing in Leaps and Bounds

This is an exciting time for the solar industry, especially if you live in California. According to Mosaic, a company that connects investors to solar projects, “Between October 2013 and March 2014, 80% of the new electricity installed in the United States was renewable energy. In California… we installed more solar in 2013 than in the previous 30 years combined.” By the end of 2013, California had installed 5,660MW (megawatts), ranking it #1 in the nation. And 2014 looks like it’s poised to beat that record. We’re proud to help California residents switch to solar and lower their bills. It’s never been a better time to celebrate saving money and the environment!     Source: Mosaic 


Who Uses Solar Power?

No matter how old you are or where you live, everyone uses electricity. And chances are you’re already using solar power in some aspect of your life. Calculators, cell phone chargers – the uses for solar power are endless. But are you using solar power all the ways you could be? How can solar work for me? When you get a solar power system installed on your home, gone will be the days of chasing the kids (or your partner!) around the house, turning the lights and appliances off. Or even worrying about running your air conditioning on those hot, summer days. The great thing about solar is that it gives you the freedom of using power whenever you need to [...]


Solar Production During Winter

February was a busy month for solar! We don’t usually have as much sun as we’ve been having this far into winter – but due to the drought, it’s meant drier weather for more installations. And it’s not just California solar that’s been growing like crazy. A recent report by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission found that renewable energy provided 99% of all new US electrical generating capacity for January 2014. And solar led the way with 287MW of new generating capacity installed. But what about all of the extra sun we’ve been enjoying? How does this winter's solar production compare to last year's? We took a cross section of our customers’ data to see just what kind of impact [...]


Adding Solar Panels to an Existing System

We are asked fairly often: Can I add more panels to my system down the road? How difficult is it to upgrade? There are many factors to consider in upgrading a system. Panel size, inverter capacity, and space are going to be the biggest deciders. As far as possible, stick with the same manufacturer. But since brands come and go, it isn't unheard of to mix and match components – as long as the voltage is compatible and can be balanced it can generally work. Not the best scenario, but if options are limited as far as what’s available, it is possible. However, if the panels are too unbalanced, they will only perform as good as the lowest wattage panels. [...]


Solar in 2014

As 2014 begins, many predictions are being made on a host of interesting topics – who’s getting married? What will be the new breakthrough inventions? Who’s getting added to the Celebrity Death Watch list? Morbid, yes, but it illustrates an important point: people want to know what’s going to happen, and everyone’s got their own ideas. What about the solar industry? We've got our own predictions too, and aren't afraid to share them. Energy storage: Solar is indeed becoming the mainstream, but what could make it even better? Storing the power that is generated through a better battery backup system. Sure, battery storage is available now, but the current, clunky offerings take up a lot of room and need adequate [...]


Solar Panels on the Moon?

Over 70 years ago, Isaac Asimov wrote a short story entitled Reason in which a space station outfitted with solar collectors beamed energy through microwaves to various planets. Perhaps this story is the inspiration behind a proposal for a new project by a Japanese construction firm to build a huge solar array along the equator of the moon for the purpose of collecting solar energy and beaming the power back to Earth. The project is referred to as LUNA RING and a tentative date for construction is 2035. The array would be a whopping 6,835 miles long with a height of about 250 miles. While robots would be designed to construct concrete supports for the panels from the moon’s soil, the cost [...]