According to OCC.OHIO.GOV and the SEIA, Ohio ranks as 28th in the nation for solar power generation, with over 20k homes using solar. By these statistics, it’s clear that Ohioans are realizing how beneficial and profitable having solar panels can be for their home. But solar power can be a bit intimidating at first with so much to learn.
How do they work? What type of panels do I get? How do I get them installed? There are a lot of questions that need to be answered when first considering solar power for your home.
Don’t fret though, as we’re here to help out our fellow Ohioans. Today we are going to provide you with all of the solar panel information you need to know. Let’s get started!
How Much Energy Can I Get in Ohio?
An average household uses 10,399 kWh of electricity per year or 867 kWh per month. This is a good baseline amount to go by when estimating how much solar you can provide for your home.
The amount of energy that your solar setup brings in is going to be determined by several different factors.
- Type of solar panels
- The amount of sunlight you get
- Proper maintenance and care
These are all going to have an effect on your power output from the solar panels. Ohio does fall as a state with low-end peak sun hours. However, don’t let that scare you as you can still bring in a ton of power.
The average solar panel installation in Ohio will get around 4 to 5 kilowatt-hours per square meter per day.
You can also the electricity usage calculator to estimate how much electricity you’ll use in your household. This will help you determine just how much solar panel you’ll need compared to the amount of energy you use.
Solar Panel Installation Process
The installation process could vary depending on the company you hire. But when it comes to the installation process for your panels, there are a few things that need to be considered.
Solar panels must have an unobstructed view of the sun. The more time your panels are exposed to the sun during the day, the more power you will generate.
This means no trees or other structures in between them and where they will be mounted on the roof. Also keep in mind if you live in a house with multiple stories, this can complicate things further because not all orientations work well with every level of your home.
Panel orientation is also something to consider when looking at how much energy you’ll get from having solar panels. You want to make sure that these face toward the south in the northern hemisphere.
However, a solar assessment team will typically come out to your house and assess these things for you. They will come out and tell you whether it would be a good fit for your home.
They will also provide information about the best financing options, what type of panels you should get, the best way to mount them, how much the panels will affect your bills, and just about everything else.
- Get a quote and have an assessment team come out
- Choose the best option for financing and paying for the system
- The solar expert will come out and install the solar panels for you
It’s really as simple as that.
What Type of Solar Panels Should You Get in Ohio?
When it comes to picking your panels, you’ll need to consider a few things before making this decision.
Different types of solar panels offer different benefits and come with their own unique price points.
Three major factors that set apart solar panels are efficiency rating, performance warranty, and power output. It is important for Ohioans considering going solar to know these three terms and what they mean when it comes to choosing the best option for them.
Efficiency Ratings and Performance Warranties
A solar panel’s efficiency rating will give you an idea of how much energy the panel can produce from sunlight per day at maximum capacity.
Solar panels are made up of solar cells that are wired together. The electricity then travels to the inverter where it is converted into energy that you can use.
The solar panel efficiency can vary depending on how many cells are used in the panel and how much surface area the entire panel covers.
Keep in mind that when you hire a solar company, they’ll go over all of your best options for the types of panels.
How Much Does Solar Cost in Ohio?
The average cost for an installed residential solar system in Ohio is currently around $12,000. This includes claiming the federal solar tax credit.
However, there is some variance in solar panel cost in different parts of the state. On top of that, there are many other things that will affect your solar costs such as incentives, Ohio tax credits, and rebates.
Ohio Tax Incentives, Credits, & Rebates
The federal government currently offers a 26% tax credit for those who choose to install solar panels here in Ohio. This means that if you were to install a new solar system at the cost of $15,000, you would qualify for a tax deduction of $3,900.
This credit is going to go down to 22% in 2023 though, so it may be a good idea to get your solar system setup before losing that extra 4%.
At one time there were rates for those installing a new solar system, however, there is no longer a state-wide rebate available.
However, there are tax exemptions that you can take advantage of! With the Ohio tax credits, you can knock off 5.75% of sales tax. This will cover both the solar panels themselves as well as the cost of the installation.
Leasing vs. Purchasing
If you decide to install a new system, you’ll be able to choose between leasing or purchasing.
The first option is to lease a system from your local solar company. You pay a monthly leasing fee to the company, and they’ll maintain the panels as well as provide you with all of the energy that those panels produce. Typically in return, they belong to you after 20 years have passed.
This would include full installation and maintenance services from the solar company themselves.
If instead, you decide to purchase the system on your own, you would have total control of everything related to the panels. This route will allow you to make the most out of the benefits and incentives.
Zero Down Payment Financing Options
Perhaps the most popular option these days is to purchase a power purchase agreement (PPA). This is essentially like renting your panels for 30 years with no money down.
The installation company will handle all of the maintenance and upkeep on the solar panel system itself – this means that there is no additional cost once it has been installed!
It would be best to bring this up when you contact your local solar panel company. Be upfront with them and let them know you are weighing your options. They’ll be able to provide you with the best insight into your specific situation.
Is There a Feed-In Tariff in Ohio?
Unfornitaly there is no feed-in tariff for Ohio. Even though Ohio doesn’t have a statewide feed tariff, you can still take advantage of the credits and incentives that we spoke of earlier.
Net Metering means that the energy your solar panels produce will go towards offsetting what you use. This is especially helpful if you tend to make more power than you need at certain parts of the day (i.e. summer).
This simply means that when there’s an excess generation of energy, it’s shared with your utility company who can then use this for their customers as well.
Ohio Net Meter Rules
Net Metering Rules in Ohio are based on the utility company. It’s important to check with your specific utility for their policies on net metering.
Typically with net metering in Ohio, you’ll be benefiting. Most of the time your panels will be providing power to the grid. Rather than powering your house.
By doing this, the amount of energy produced from your panels will result in you being paid for it. This will typically mean that they will discount your utility bills for generating power.
Your Utility Bill
If you decide to purchase your system, typically it will be installed so that it feeds directly into the utility grid. This means that no matter what, you’ll still get a monthly bill for having utilities in your home.
When there’s an excess generation of electricity, this will go towards offsetting some of the charges on your energy bill each month. However, there are fixed charges on all meters that will continue to apply. These charges won’t change just because you’ve got solar panels.
Once you’ve chosen the best solar panel installation company in Ohio, you’ll be able to discuss your specific situation with them. Regardless of whether or not they are offering leasing options or PPAs, they’ll go over all of the requirements with you.
Typically most companies will require your utility approval prior to beginning any construction on your property. This is especially true if you’re looking at purchasing a system and having it tied directly into their grid. Ensure that you understand the process prior to your utility approval.
Understand Ohio’s policy prior to signing any contracts. It’s important that you understand what options are available for clean energy incentives in Ohio before signing anything with your solar company. This ensures that there are no surprises down the line.
Proof of Utility Insurance
Most of the time your utilities will require proof of insurance. This is done before the construction begins for your solar system. If you speak with your agent, they’ll walk you through any additional costs in your premium or changes in requirements.
Return on Investment
It’s important to understand what you can save through solar energy. This may be your most significant motivation in making the switch to solar power! Your utility company will be able to provide you with an estimate on how much money you may save by investing in a system for your home.
The term “payback period” refers to the length of time that it will take for your solar panels to pay for themselves. This rate will vary depending on things such as the efficiency of your solar panels. Typically a home can see a 20% RIO within the first year of installing home solar panels.
Finding the Right Ohio Solar Panel Installer
Choosing the right company to handle your solar installation is a big decision. This is especially true since you’ll be working with them for decades to come! So, what should you take into consideration?
First of all, it’s important that they have a good reputation. Check online reviews and any feedback from past clients.
It’s also critical that they are upfront about who will service your system in the future. You want to choose a professional company such as Blue Raven Solar that has been around for a while, as this ensures stability.
In addition to these two things, it’s also helpful if they can provide references from other people in Ohio who’ve turned to them before. In the end, though, it’s best to trust your gut and go with a company that makes you comfortable.
Go Green and Save With Solar in Ohio
Solar panels are an excellent investment for homeowners in Ohio. They provide a great return on your investment and can save you money each month without cutting corners or using electricity from fossil fuels.
It’s important to make sure that the company you choose will be around for decades to come, as this ensures the stability of service and quality with them. Solar is not just environmentally friendly – it also provides a good rate of ROI and investment.
Now that you know all of this solar panel information surrounding Ohio, the next step is to contact a solar company and get started! While you’re at it, check out the rest of our website’s content to find out more about solar energy and how it can help you.