What property managers need to know about rooftop solar panels

Solar energy has never been so affordable for companies

solar panels on the roof of administrative building

According to the United States Department of Energy, solar energy is becoming more popular in the US every year. A1A Solar just completed Florida’s largest rooftop solar array on a popular furniture retail store. The energy system consists of 5,742 solar panels and provides up to 50 percent of the building’s power consumption. With many companies following suit, there are a number of things property managers need to know about rooftop maintenance.

Here is some helpful information regarding operating costs, preventative measures and maintenance for commercial rooftop solar panels:

  1. Operating costs
    Evolving technology helps place commercial solar panel costs within reach for most companies. With the help of solar energy, your monthly energy bills will decrease. Many companies earn 15 to 25 percent in after-tax returns while using solar panels. This helps generate thousands of dollars in savings a year. A1A Solar strives to provide systems that create as much electricity as the company is using to “zero out” electricity consumption. Solar energy system owners receive credit through net metering for the electricity their solar panels produce. With net metering, you only pay for the energy you use beyond what your system generates. Be sure to do your research because net metering policies differ depending on the state.
  2. Preventative measures
    Before installing solar panels, make sure your roof is in good shape structurally. Most warranties last for 20 to 25 years. If your roof is going to need renovations in the near future, it’s easier to deal with them before the panels go up. This will save you both time and money. A key point of upkeep is foliage. If your company building has many large trees surrounding it, you’ll want to prune all branches and keep them from blocking the panels.
  3. Maintenance
    The great thing about solar panels is that they require little to no maintenance. Panels have a 25- to 45-year lifespan, only requiring a cleaning a few times a year. Inspection and cleaning are imperative to ensure that bird droppings, dirt and debris are not blocking absorption of the sun. The best time for a cleaning is early morning or late afternoon. Be careful: Running cold water over hot panels can cause them to crack. If your company’s roof is too high to reach, you can install an automated cleaner or hire a professional roof cleaner.

As the popularity of solar systems rises, you should think about installing one for your company. With solar panels being so affordable, how could it not be a good investment? When the time comes to make the purchase, these key points will help guide you through the operating costs, preventative measures and maintenance.