Solar Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What types of rebates are available for solar?

All California residents that receive utility service from their regional provider are eligible for the following solar incentives:

1) Expected Performance Based Buydown is an upfront rebate that pays you for what your system will produce annually in kilo-watt hours. Aztec Solar will deduct the rebate from your total contract price so you receive the rebate right away.

2) Performance Based Incentive is a five-year rebate payment based on the actual performance of your solar electric system. You are credited monthly for the energy your system produces at a fixed rebate determined at the time of your approved application. For more information about rebates visit your utility website: PG&E: http://www.pge.com/solar/ SMUD: http://www.smud.org/en/community-environment/solar/Pages/index.aspx Lodi: http://www.lodielectric.com/residential/rebateoffer.asp?id=8

3) In addition, there is a 30% Federal tax credit for both your solar electric and solar water heating system, to be applied to your tax liability in the year of installation and if needed for up to seven years following.

What does solar cost?

Solar Electric Systems average between $7-9/watt and will vary in payback base on how much you currently pay for your electricity as well as how much you want to lower your utility service. Solar Water Heating can pay for itself in 3 years or less. Typically, these systems are installed for under $5,000 (after incentives) and can reduce your monthly hot water heating bill up to 75%. Learn more about this technology with 8 Things to Know about SWH. Solar Pool Heating is the most environmentally friendly and inexpensive way to heat your swimming pool and can extend your swimming season up to 3 ½ months. If you heat your pool with a gas heater, you will recover your costs in less than 2 years. See more about Solar as an Investment.

What type of solar electric systems does Aztec Solar install?

Aztec Solar specializes in a Total Solar Home Design combining solar electricity and solar water heating systems for more energy and therefore greater savings. The savings available for a total solar home design will add up quicker for homeowners who have large monthly utility bills, for all-electric homes or for properties with propane heated water. We also are a preferred partner for Echo First, and if best suited for your needs will install traditional solar electric, solar water heating or solar pool heating systems.

Is my home right for solar?

Homes with an open roof space facing south, west or southwest are usually good candidates for solar. In addition, having limited shade on the property will give you a higher yielding production from your system. Solar Water Heating is a great option for homeowners, as about 75% of a family of four’s hot water needs is met with as little as 8’ x 12’ roof space.

Will my property tax increase?

Solar upgrades will not increase your property taxes. However many homeowners with solar have experienced an increased appraisal values because homes with energy efficiency upgrades are selling for between 7-20% more than a home without upgrades.

How long do solar systems last?

Solar products are now covered with 20-year warranties. Solar electric technology has been around for 50 years and with no moving parts they are virtually maintenance free and have a life expectancy of 25+ years. Solar water heating technology dates back centuries and the latest collectors also carry 20-year warranties.

Why is solar power good for the environment?

Sun-generated power is clean — no pollution, noise-free and reduces your dependence on finite resources. A typical 3 kilowatt solar electric system will eliminate 101 tons of CO2 over its 25+ year lifetime. The average residential solar water heating system eliminates 125,000 pounds of CO2 over its lifetime. If homeowners make the switch to providing their own energy, the benefits will become apparent in our neighborhoods, our state and the globe.

What is Net Metering?

This program allows utility customers that have solar electric systems to “turn their utility meter” backwards when they generate electricity in excess of their demand. This offset means that customers receive a credit on their monthly bill for the excess electricity they generate.

Why is it smart to finance solar?

You already pay a monthly utility bill for energy, essentially financing an indefinite, variable rate loan from your utility company. Installing a solar power system allows you to refinance this monthly bill at a fixed rate and term and have your payments go towards ownership of a valuable asset.

What about roof damage?

Aztec Solar has been installing on roofs for over 30 years. We guarantee our craftsmanship and expertise on your roof. Click here to read more about what you should ask your solar installer.

Why Aztec Solar?

Aztec Solar is a solar energy provider committed to meeting the energy needs of homeowners by offering top quality solar products and technologies, supported by knowledgeable solar experts and award winning customer service. We offer a complete turn-key installation, with service and maintenance options. We have happily served the greater Sacramento area with solar technology for over 30 years.

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