Frequently asked questions

1. Why is Solar a good idea?

Consistent Unlimited Energy- Texas averages 204 sunny days a year. That translates to around 2800 hours of sunlight per year! 


Rapid Industry Expansion-Texas went from 9th to 6th in the national solar ranking, doubling its solar capacity last year, as well as increasing solar industry jobs by one-third.


Highest Financial Incentives- 30% Federal Investment Tax Credit will drop to 26% after 2019 and will decrease another 4% the following year. Also, since Solar Energy is on the rise energy providers are offering more rebate programs. 


Your Energy Working for You- The excess energy you do not need to power your home can be bought back by your Retail Electric Provider. Depending on the size of your system, you could potentially eliminate your electric bill! 

2. How exactly will I be saving money?

Besides the rebate incentive and tax credit, your selected Retail Electric Provider will buy back the Energy that your system collects and does not need for consumption. Most Providers use the energy bought back to credit your account and the difference is shown in the next bill. (See our REP list breakdown for more details) Some REPs may even offer a cash back incentive!

3. What type of equipment will need to be installed?

  • Meters

Oncor will provide a Distributed Renewable Generator or DRG meter upon submitting an Interconnection Application. This meter will measure both the energy you consume and send back to the electric grid. This give-and-take relationship between your solar system and the utility grid is called net metering. Your Retail Electric Provider might also require additional meters for monitoring. 

  • Panels

Solar panels contain solar cells. Solar cells, sometimes called photovoltaic cells, convert the energy of the sun into electricity. Most solar cells are made of some form of silicon. Panels also contain metal conductor strips and antireflective coating. Wiring and hardware to attach panels to the roof are also part of your entire solar system.

  • Inverters

Solar panels generate Direct Current (DC). But almost everything you use in your house – TV, computer, and refrigerator – run on Alternating Current (AC). That’s why solar systems require an inverter. Inverters take the power generated by the solar panels and convert the DC power into AC power. Excess AC energy is fed back into your local utility grid or stored with extra battery backup.

4. Why does Oncor have to provide me with a meter?

Oncor is the Transmission and Delivery Utility or TDU. Oncor services most the electric lines and stations in Texas that transfer power from your Retail Electric Provider to you. They need to provide their own meter to ensure proper transfer of Energy to and from your home.

5. How long does the process take?

This can vary for each system but on average the process takes between 6-9 weeks from time of quote to a fully installed system.

  • Initial contact and Home Solar Report
  • Oncor Applications, Permit Requests
  • DRG Meter Installed
  • Solar System Installed
  • Safety Checks and Connection to the Grid

6. What are the tax breaks or other financial incentives for Solar?

  • The solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is a %30 deductible federal tax credit.
  • REP Rebates are specific to the Retail Electric Provider you choose
  • Special install and cash back rebates through Oncor and local municipalities. 
  • A 5 kWh system can add $17,000 to your properties value 

7. If we have several days of cloud cover will our home still have power?

Yes, you will always be connected to the main grid. If at any time your Solar system is not producing enough energy to power your home, the extra energy needed will come from your Retail Service Provider. 

8. If the power in my neighborhood goes out will I still have power if I have Solar?

  

This can be both yes and no.

No- In most cases if your neighborhood or section of the grid is without power, you will not have power. This is because you are still running off the power being sent from the grid. 

Yes- If you have your own separate battery system installed to store excess energy you produce, you can run your home separate from the energy you would receive from the grid.