Commercial Solar Panel Installations: Costs, Benefits & What to Expect
When you think of solar panels, you may be picturing them installed on a residential home. However, solar panels are not just for houses! They can be installed anywhere and are growing in popularity within commercial businesses, especially in sunny states like Florida. Businesses are quickly learning that installing a solar panel system comes with many benefits and is ultimately worth it in the long run. Are you questioning if solar panels are right for your business? Let’s dive into everything you need to know about what comes with commercial solar panel installations!
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What is commercial solar?
You may be thinking that commercial solar is a simple concept, meaning that these projects are just meant for businesses rather than residential homes. While that is correct, there’s much more to discuss when defining the overall concept of commercial solar.
You may often hear these projects being referred to as commercial & industrial (C&I) solar. That is because most commercial solar projects fall in between the categories of commercial and industrial business scales and vary significantly in size. These projects can be for government agencies, corporations, small businesses, and even nonprofits. Additionally, C&I projects can range from less than 50kW for small projects such as roadside speed monitors, to 1,000+kW for large-scale projects for corporations. There’s even an entire town in Southwest Florida that runs completely off solar power!
How much do commercial solar systems cost?
When trying to understand how much commercial projects cost, there are many different key factors to keep in mind. First is that no two businesses are the same. Because commercial solar can be considered a broad term, the size of these projects largely varies between small and large scales, which makes it difficult to determine an exact price of what they may cost. Ultimately, it depends on the business and what they are looking to install. In most cases, it may be safe to assume that commercial projects often cost more than residential solar panels. Fortunately, when you partner with a great solar installer, like SEM Power, there are often extensive financing resources available to you, which makes these installations much easier to navigate.
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How can solar power help with rising costs?
If you’re currently a customer of FPL or Duke Energy, two of the largest electric service providers in Florida, then you’re probably already familiar with their rise in rates for 2023. Unfortunately, we have been seeing large electric providers consistently raise their rates every year. Fortunately, commercial solar installations can help your business combat these hefty rates. Depending on the size of the facility, a business can offset ALL electric costs with its solar panel system. Making the switch to reusable energy also comes with incentives and tax rebates for qualifying customers. Both of these factors create potential for a great return on investment, making going solar a no-brainer. Navigating financing, costs, and incentives can be tricky, which is why working with a great solar installer is necessary when considering solar panels for your business. At SEM Power, we will help you evaluate your bills and other important factors to determine the size of your installation so you can receive maximum financial benefits.
Where can commercial solar power systems be installed?
Commercial solar panel installations can look very different depending on the business and its needs. For example, a smaller business may want to install a few solar panels on its roof to help cut down its utility costs. On the other hand, large-scale projects may be looking to introduce an entire solar farm because they have a large amount of space available to them. Additionally, businesses may opt in for installing a solar carport in their parking lot, which can produce renewable energy while providing shade to the cars of their employees and customers. In conclusion, solar panels can be installed in many different forms and can look different from one another depending on the project.
Benefits of Commercial Solar Installations
Installing a solar panel system for your business or nonprofit comes with many benefits. Let’s go over a few!
There’s no denying that renewable energy is great for the environment. More than one-third of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions come from burning fossil fuels that are used by residential homes and commercial businesses for electricity, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. For large businesses, going solar means that you can reduce your carbon footprint tremendously.
Energy Star reports that small businesses spend a combined amount of $60 billion on utility costs per year. When electricity rates are expected to continuously increase for years to come, there’s no doubt that switching to solar power is great for your business. Additionally, switching to solar energy allows your business to lock in consistency, meaning that you won’t have to worry about utility rate fluctuation. Solar panels are extremely durable and last an average of 25 years, which means you’ll be able to collect a great return on investment.
As renewable energy grows in popularity, consumers often look to support businesses that have a go-green mindset. Reducing your business’ carbon footprint can lead to great opportunities for marketing. Displaying information about your commercial solar energy system on your website, in advertisements, and even in e-mail newsletters can help spread the word to potential customers. Your dedication to reducing greenhouse emissions will leave a great impression in the public eye.
Solar Panel System Care and Maintenance
Solar panel systems require very little maintenance. If you’ve seen installed panels, you’ve probably noticed that they are designed on a tilted angle, which is meant to clear any debris. This being said, the general recommendation for cleaning your solar panels can be between two and four times a year, depending on your location and surroundings.
When it comes to monitoring the activity of your solar panels, SEM Power makes it easier than ever. For our customers, we offer advanced data tracking software that can be used to monitor your solar panel system in real time. With this software, you’ll be able to truly understand how your system is benefitting your business. Additionally, you’ll be able to pinpoint any minor production issues that may occur and quickly resolve them.
Is your company right for solar?
If you enjoy saving money on utilities, moving forward with a commercial solar panel installation is most likely a great idea for your business. Not only will you be helping the environment, but you’ll be helping the future growth of your business. When you work with SEM Power, we’ll help navigate you through the process of installing solar panels. Additionally, we’ll evaluate your bills and other factors to ensure that you’ll be getting the best bang for your buck!
Questions about Commercial Solar Installations
Which solar panel is best for commercial use?
Monocrystalline solar panels are the most widely used and most efficient type of solar panel. These are individually produced pure silicon crystals and produce a total of between 300 and 600 W of electricity, each with a maximum capacity. SEM Power installs high-quality solar panels for our large-scale commercial solar installation projects, including:
How long does it take to install commercial solar panels?
Depending on the size of your desired project and your business, commercial solar panel installation can take anywhere from a few days to several months for larger projects.
How do you calculate the optimal size for a commercial solar system?
Calculating solar energy consumption is calculated by dividing the total amount needed in kWh daily and then using its peak hours for the kW of electricity. Additionally, the azimuth, which is the angle at which solar panels face to receive the maximum amount of sun exposure, will greatly increase the output of your panels.
Partner with SEM Power Today to Leverage Incentives and Rebates for Solar Energy
SEM delivers clean solar energy systems that reduce energy costs for Florida homes, businesses, and communities. Our best-in-class solar panel technology and experienced solar service experts can help you save and enjoy clean, renewable solar energy.