What Direction Should Solar Panels Face?

Are you considering a solar panel for your home? If so, one of the first few questions you will probably ask yourself is “what is the best direction for solar panels to face so they will produce maximum power?”

Typically, your solar panel company will help you with the placement, but the general rule is if you are in the U.S., you should have your solar panels facing true south.

The more sunlight that reaches your solar panels, the more electricity you can generate and the more you will be able to save on your electric bill.

If your roof doesn’t face the south…

Don’t panic, if your roof faces east-west instead of north-south you have a few options. You could increase the solar collector area by using more solar panels or larger collectors. Another option is to place the panels somewhere other than your roof. You could mount panels on a south-facing wall or even on the ground. This is more unusual but it gives you easy access to the panels so you can clean or repair them easily.

Worried about not getting enough sunlight?

If you decide to place your panels on the ground instead of the roof, you could always look into placing your panels on trackers which adjust the position of the panels though out the year to maximize the amount of sunlight.

Now that you know the direction your solar panel should face, give Solar Solutions a call at 915-581-0461 today so we can answer any questions you may have regarding solar energy.

New Homes in Miami Require Solar Panels

As the cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source out there, solar power is the energy of the future. Because of its many benefits, more and more individuals and companies are going solar. And just this month, South Miami passed a law requiring that anyone buying a new home or renovating their existing one install solar panels.

The Whats

Under South Miami’s new law, any homes being built that are larger than 1,100 square miles will need to install solar panels. Any home renovations that replace or extend more than 75% of the building are also subject to this law and thus require the owners to install solar panels.

South Miami is the first city in Florida to pass a law of this kind, and the fourth in the country. The law will go into effect on September 18.

The Whys

Lawmakers and government officials cite looking toward the future as their reasoning for passing this new legislation. As South Miami Mayor Philip Stoddard explained the night the measure passed, “Solar reduces the cost of home ownership, it makes houses sell faster, it returns more to a builder, it makes local jobs, and most importantly, it reduces carbon emissions today to help our children and grandchildren have a better future tomorrow.”

Looking to install solar panels for your own home or business? With more than 30 years of experience in the solar energy field, Solar Solutions will provide you with superior panels and installation! Contact us today to learn more about our services.


Drones and Solar Panels?

Sometimes there are broken solar panels on solar farms, but a new company, Measure, has come up with a revolutionary idea to fix this issue.

To help make solar energy more efficient, drones might be utilized to help identify broken or improperly installed solar panels.

Harjeet Johal, a vice president of the drone company says that sending employees out to manually locate busted panels is incredibly difficult, labor intensive and costly. To find 200 panels in a 200 acre farm would take a couple of weeks where as a drone can spot dead panels in seven hours.

How does the drone spot broken panels?

A drone can be partially or fully defective or wired improperly. The drone company uses both visual and infrared panels to tell which panel is functioning or not. Solar panels convert sun’s rays into electricity and not heat. However, if a panel is broken, it will get very hot compared to the rest of the panels because it is absorbing all of the sunlight, which causes it to stand out to an infrared sensor on a drone.

Why do panels sometimes break?

You don’t hear of solar panels breaking very often, but it can happen. It could depend on the panel manufacture, the life of the plant, the environment, the weather and other factors. But the most important rule regarding solar panels is to not touch them. Always have an experienced employee from Solar Solutions inspect your panels and repair or replace them if need be. Give us a call today at 915-581-0461; we will be sure to meet all of your residential and commercial solar energy needs!

World’s Largest Floating Solar Panels

China once had a reputation as a coal-guzzling, smog – blanketed polluter. However, that is changing fast. China invests more in wind, hydro and solar power than any other country and recently, China switched on the world’s largest floating solar power plant.

Where is it located?

The floating solar power plant is located in the city of Huainan. The power plant has a capacity of 40 megawatts, which is enough to power a small town or more than 15,000 homes and it floats over a flooded former coal-mining region.

Advantages of floating solar arrays

Floating solar panels have been in use for a little over a decade and have several advantages; the cooling effect of the water the panels float on makes them more efficient and they don’t take up any valuable space on land. Floating solar panels not only increase clean power, but they also reduce evaporation of water for drinking or irrigation by intercepting sunlight before it hits a reservoir’s surface.

China may have achieved a seemingly impossible renewable energy goal and we are intrigued. Solar power is gaining traction around the globe, and if you are interested in the process, give Solar Solutions a call at 915-581-0461, we are one of the most experienced solar power companies in Texas and New Mexico.

Why Your Local School Should Go Solar

School is all about learning, improving and creating a better world. Over the years, electricity prices have been rising and the cost of energy is expected to continue to increase over time. A great way to take control of energy costs is to go the solar energy route and generate your own power from your schools rooftop.

Save money

Why not save and use a stable and clean energy source? If solar panels are installed, your schools electricity bill can significantly be reduced. Solar panels can last up to 25 years and a solar investment can save millions in the long run. To make your schools budgeting easier and to protect against rising electricity costs, your school can sign a contract to purchase a solar system which allows the school to guarantee their electricity prices for up to 20 years.

Promote educational opportunities

Students are able to see first-hand how sunlight is converted into electricity with solar systems at their school. Schools often have a large incentive to go solar not just to save money but to also create a sustainability- conscious student body. Solar energy installations can be integrated into science, math and technologies programs within schools which could then potentially improve test scores in those fields.

Improve our planet

Not only will your school save money and create educational opportunities for students with solar energy, it will also help our planet. Solar power is a renewable substitute to fossil-fuel burning sources. It is free from the sun and never runs out, therefore switching to solar energy is one of the biggest changes we can make in our communities to restrain global warming.

To improve the health of the environment and generations to come, solar is an extremely wise investment, especially in schools. 

Have you been thinking about getting solar panels for your home or local school? If so, call  Solar Solutions at 915-581-0461 and talk to a professional who can answer any questions you may have.

Google’s Latest Feature

Google knows and does just about everything, but the latest feature might just blow your mind away. Google’s Project Sunroof allows you to check if your neighbors have installed solar panels on their rooftops.

This tool has been around for a few years, allowing you to check whether installing solar panels will cut your energy bill or not, but now you’re able to zoom in on a satellite map and a red dot will show you homes and building that have solar panels. Project Sunroof was launched in 2015 but has now expanded outside the US earlier this year.

How does it work?

This tool tells you how much sunlight hits your rooftop, how much you could save by installing solar panels and it gives you information on local panel providers to help with the installation.

Where does the tool get the information?

It’s gathered by a machine learning algorithm that’s trained to recognize solar panels from satellite images. According to The Atlantic, this intensive information is available on 60 million buildings in the US as of right now, but Google is hoping to add 40 million buildings in the next few years.

Why was this tool created?

The goal of Project Sunroof is to encourage more people to commit to solar panels. People are more likely to install solar panels if their friends and neighbors have, especially if the panels are visible from the road.

Use the power of the sun to your advantage and contact Solar Solutions at 915-581-0461 today to help get your solar panel installed. We are looking forward to working with you!

Why You Should Camp With a Solar Panel

With summer shortly approaching, your mind is automatically planning trips you want to take with family and friends. Perhaps you want to get back to the simplicity of nature by going camping, but you don’t want to completely go off of the grid. In that case, bringing a solar panel camping will allow you to enjoy electricity at any time without doing any damage to Mother Nature.

Are you worried about running out of battery on your next camping trip? No need to panic. You’ll still be able to run your refrigerator, mobile device and camping lights if you use solar power. You won’t have to detract from the peace and quiet you went outdoors to find, like generators tend to do. Instead, you can use solar power, a clean form of energy that’s natural, renewable and free.

What you’ll need

A compact and portable solar panel, a solar regulator, a deep-cycle auxiliary battery and an inverter (if you’re planning to charge large appliances such as a television or laptop.)

How it works

A solar panel gathers power from the sun, which then flows into the battery through the solar regulator. Solar regulators are important because they prevent damage to your battery from fluctuating charge or overcharging. How much power your panels gather depends on their size, how they’re used and the amount of sunlight hours in a day. Keep in mind that not all sunlight is created equal. Factors such as geographic location, surrounding temperature and the time year all have an influence over how much power your solar panels are able to gather.

How to calculate your solar power requirements

Knowing how to calculate your equipment’s power usage is key to creating a solar power system that’s tailored to you. If you don’t have a basic understanding of how much power your appliances are using, you could end up buying the wrong-sized solar panel or incorrect battery.  To calculate your usage, look at your devices and see if they have a power draw on the label, then figure out how long per day you will operate the equipment to calculate its overall power draw. To figure out how to calculate your solar power requirements in depth, check out iTechWorld.

How to set up your solar panel

In order to optimize its best performance, position and align your solar panel perpendicular to the sun, it will capture the maximum amount of solar energy. When possible, try to align your panels according to the sun’s position in the sky and clear off any dust that gathers on the panel with a microfiber cloth.

Now that you’re thinking about solar panels, call GR Solar Solutions, one of the most experienced solar power companies in Texas and New Mexico, at 915-581-0461 for more information.

Summer Energy Saving Tips

Most homeowners use a great deal of energy during the summer months. It can be difficult for an air conditioning unit to keep a home cool when it’s extremely hot outside, and as a result, many AC units end up staying on all day long and burning through a significant amount of energy in the process. Outside of the fact that it wastes a lot of energy, it can also become costly for homeowners. Here are some summer energy saving tips that can help you cut back on the amount of energy you use and cut down on the amount of money you pay in energy bills every month.

Update your thermostat and learn how to use it properly.

Are you using an old thermostat that doesn’t allow you to program it? Or are you just unfamiliar with what your thermostat does and what you should be doing to control it? Either way, you need to make sure you have an updated thermostat in your home that you can program to cool your house as efficiently as possible. You should set it to go on and off during the day based on when you’ll actually be home, and you should also avoid cranking the temperature as low as it goes if you don’t really need it to be that cold in your home.

Install ceiling fans and use them appropriately.

Ceiling fans can help to keep home cooler without having to turn the thermostat down. According to Energy.gov, you can raise your thermostat about 4 degrees if you have ceiling fans turned on in the main areas of your home and feel no change in the overall comfort level. But if you have fans, you should be sure to shut them off when you’re not in the same room as them since they really on the wind chill effect to cool people off. They won’t be doing anything but wasting energy if they are turned on and blowing when no one is actually in a room.

Invest in solar panels.

Taking small steps like swapping out an old thermostat for a new one and turning off fans when you aren’t using them will improve your energy situation slightly, but if you want to see bigger changes, you should consider installing solar panels on your roof. These panels will help you save money on your energy bills in the long term. They will provide your home with a lot of the electricity it needs on a daily basis.

Do you want to learn more about how solar panels could benefit you and your family? GR Solar Solutions would love to tell you about how a solar electric system could benefit you. Call us at 915-581-0461 today for more information.

Reasons to Switch Your Home to Solar Energy

If you’re like most people, you’ve noticed more and more homes have solar panels on their roofs. It seems to be a trendy thing to do, especially in places where it’s sunny much of the year. After all, solar panels have the ability to collect the sun’s rays and turn them into energy, so why not utilize this resource?

Have you been thinking of switching your home to solar energy? What’s holding you back? There are several reasons to make the switch. For instance, did you know there’s a huge tax credit when you do? The government wants more people to utilize solar power, so they’re willing to give you a tax credit up to 30%.

Next, consider solar a long-term investment. It eventually pays for itself and then you’re done with payments, so you’re getting “free” energy. In fact, many people end up selling their excess power to the local utility company. Indeed, solar panels on your roof make sense if you’re the type of person who wants to guard against rising electricity rates.

Does the idea of being energy independent appeal to you? Rather than just going along with rate increases from the local electric company, year after year, you have the great option to be independent, making your own energy thanks to solar panels.

Solar energy requires minimal maintenance and has been found to increase the value and marketability of homes. Studies have shown that solar equipped homes sell more quickly and for more money than homes lacking solar panels. Solar panels are “en vogue” these days.

Finally, why not switch to solar energy in order to show the world– or at least your friends and family and neighbors– that you care about clean, sustainable power that doesn’t pollute and can’t run out? The sun’s going to shine, so you might as well harness the sun’s rays in order to power your house and the stuff inside, like computers, the oven, fridge, TVs, hairdryers, washing machine, alarm clocks and lamps.

Coal power is dirty and passé. Solar power is clean and very much the 2017 thing to do!

Call GR Solar Solutions to discuss making the switch to solar– the number is 915-581-0461.

Where is the World’s Largest Solar Energy Storage Farm?


If you grew up in the 1980s– if you were alive in the 1980s– you probably remember Americans developed a certain fascination with Australia thanks to several movies, like Crocodile Dundee and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. We learned there was a great desert expanse there known as the “Outback.”

When one thinks of the desert, one usually thinks of heat, sand, and sun… and not much else. It’s the perfect kind of place for a gigantic solar “farm” to harness the sun’s rays and turn them into energy we can use to sustain our electricity-dependent lifestyles.

Solar energy has really taken off in the past couple years, and in South Australia the Lyon Group is developing a billion dollar solar farm with 3.4 million solar panels and 1.1 million individual batteries. Read that sentence one more time please and take note: 3.4 million panels and 1.1 million batteries! The overall capacity of this place will be a whopping 330 megawatts of power, 100 megawatts of which will be stored in all those batteries and used when the sun sets. This facility’s renewable energy will help ensure that South Australia’s residents do not face power outages. Meanwhile, it means less focus on using finite fossil fuels for energy needs.

If you haven’t actually visited South Australia, know this: it’s a state in Australia, much like our Texas. Actually, it has an even more extreme wilderness than Texas. With a total land area of almost 380,000 square miles, most of the area is arid and empty of people. There are 1.7 million people calling the state home, but the majority of them live in the capital of Adelaide and its suburbs, which is near the ocean and decidedly not desert. That leaves plenty of wide open space for solar farms that can quietly and efficiently take in sunshine and convert it to energy.

Utilizing decent batteries to store solar energy is a good step forward for the solar industry. Meanwhile, the more solar farms there are, the better off our planet will be. Coal and oil are dirty and can “run out,” while solar is clean and infinite.