HOW DOES SOLAR ENERGY WORK?
SOLAR ENERGY BASIC OVERVIEW
How do solar panels create energy? Here is a basic overview:
- Solar Panels collect and convert solar energy into low-voltage DC electricity.
- The converted DC electricity travels to an installed solar power inverter, where it is converted into the 120-volt AC electricity that is used by your household outlets and appliances.
- From the inverter, the AC electricity heads to your electrical panel, where it is distributed through your house as needed.
- Any excess electricity created is sent through your utility meter and then out into the electrical grid, and you receive credit for it through net metering.
- System performance data is stored and viewable online through a solar monitoring system service.
WHAT IS NET METERING?
While the sun is out, your solar system may generate more electricity than your household uses. Any energy beyond what is needed decreases the documented usage on your utility meter, and is returned to the public electrical grid for others to use. During cloudy or low-light times when your house needs more electricity than your solar panels are manufacturing, power flows like normal and your electricity is drawn from the power grid.
The concept of net metering means that your monthly charges are only for the accumulated amount of energy you use, minus the energy credits you acquire from your solar panel production. At some points during the year, your net usage could be under zero. You now have a bank of electricity to use when usage is higher.