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Residential Solar FAQ

Any Questions?

You’ve got questions about solar power for homes. We’ve got answers. Third Sun Solar is here to make going solar simple and hassle-free.. Here are some basic answers to popular questions to get started. Looking for more detailed information? Every customer is different, and providing detailed answers to any and all of your specific questions is one of the most important parts of our process. Give us a call or contact us to get in touch with a solar expert.

Here are some basic qualifiers for solar — if you answer “yes” to just one or more of these questions, contact us for a free solar consultation

  • Do you own your home?
  • Do you pay high electric bills? More than $100 in the average month?
  • Are your electric bills higher in the summer than in the winter?
  • Is your house unshaded or only lightly shaded (by trees or other nearby structures)?
  • Does your house have a large roof surface facing south, southeast, or southwest?
  • Does your property have open, unshaded ground near the house (within 100 feet)?

Solar energy systems have high up-front costs, but once installed, the fuel (the sun) is free forever. This compares with conventional electric energy costs, which have been rising at around per year. We expect this number to rise even faster in the future. 

Plus, the Solar Tax Credit in 2021 allows you to deduct 26% of the cost of your solar system from your federal taxes.

Put simply: if you spend $20,000 on your solar system, you pay $4,400 less in taxes when you file. If the credit is larger than your tax liability in the first year, the remaining amount can be applied the next year. Generally, all expenses included in the quote you receive from your Solar Consultant can be included in the deduction. There is no cap on the value of the credit, and it is available to both residential and commercial customers.

Going solar is easy. First, schedule a consultation. We make a free analysis of your home to gauge sun exposure, shading, roof conditions, and existing electrical service. We look at a recent utility bill to see how much power you use, and when. We match your available space, electricity needs, and budget to find your solar sweet spot – the best system size for you, with the best payback. You want to make the cleanest power for the least money – and that is what we can do for you.

For safety purposes, grid-interactive solar systems are designed to immediately disconnect and shut off if a utility grid failure is sensed. The system will automatically restart a few minutes after grid power is restored. As a result, no power will be available from the solar panels during utility outages. This protects utility workers who may be out working on power lines.


Solar energy systems can provide around-the-clock, independent backup power during utility outages if they are connected to an appropriately-sized battery bank to absorb and store the energy they produce. Natural gas and propane generators are other options for backup power. We have installed solar panels and a generator on numerous jobs when secure power is an absolute must-have.

Solar panels last 30 years or more. The industry-standard panel warranty is 25 years. 

Solar panels degrade gradually over time with exposure to sunlight, wind, and weather. Panels are typically warranted 25–30 years and have a design lifespan of over 30 years. Energy production is expected to degrade by about one-half of one percent per year.

Inverters are warranted for 10–15 years and have an expected lifespan of 15–20 years. You may need to replace an inverter once in the system’s lifetime and we figure that cost into our financial predictions.

All other system components have service lives over 30 years.

Great question! Grid-tied solar electric systems automatically feed power into your house. Any excess electricity produced by the solar system and not used by your home is put onto the electric grid and spins your electric meter backward. Your utility credits you on your bill at the retail rate for the kWh produced!

Great question! Grid-tied solar electric systems automatically feed power into your house. Any excess electricity produced by the solar system and not used by your home is put onto the electric grid and spins your electric meter backward. Your utility credits you on your bill at the retail rate for the kWh produced!

Yes—in a great way! In addition to the many benefits of solar power for homes, increased property value can be found among them. Let’s face it – the home you’re in now might not be the home that you live in for the next 25 or more years. You may wonder: what happens if I move? Should you still consider solar if you aren’t sure you’ll be in your home forever? Yes! Solar panels are attractive to potential buyers, meaning they can increase your home’s value. 

That depends! We can build solar panel systems on the roof or on the ground. Rooftop solar offers a lower-cost option. The roof is an existing structure that can usually serve well as a mounting surface for solar panels. A ground-mounted solar system requires a foundation and may demand a long underground wire run back to the house. 

Either type of installation can work well. We can provide whichever option you prefer, and we will advise you as to our opinion of which will work best in your case.

The short answer is no. In fact, the reverse is true—by shading the roof from the sun’s rays and from the damaging effects of wind, hail, and debris, the solar array will actually increase the life of the roof beneath it. And the panels themselves are quite durable—about as hard to break as a car windshield.

As experienced, certified installers, we take great care to ensure no damage is done to the roof during the installation or anytime thereafter. We work very hard to ensure that each and every one of our customers is satisfied with their solar system results.

The Solar market is constantly changing as new technologies come on the market. 

Our experience gives us an educated eye when evaluating new and emerging products. Our offerings have been carefully selected from premium companies in the solar industry. We have seen many companies come and go in our 20 years of business. It’s important for us to vet our equipment suppliers carefully and only install the most reliable equipment.

At Third Sun Solar we specialize in installing full turnkey, grid-interactive solar energy systems. In addition to solar installation, Third Sun Solar is also experienced in installing solar energy storage systems and maintaining various solar battery offerings, Electric Vehicle charging stations, and gas generators.

No, Third Sun Solar does not install off-grid solar systems.

We’re ready to help! All you have to do is reach out to our solar energy experts for a consultation, and we’ll take care of the rest.