Solar panels are an eco-friendly investment for your property. From saving on energy to reducing carbon emissions, investing in solar power for your home or business has many benefits. However, there is more to the process than you might think.
This guide is for anyone interested in solar power who has questions about the installation process. Whether it's for your home or a commercial installation, being familiar with the installation process can help you choose. Learn more about how long it takes to install solar panels and the differences between residential and commercial installations.
Multiple factors affect how long it takes to install a solar system. The installation process is measured from the moment you sign a contract to passing the final inspections. Actually attaching your solar panels to your roof is the quickest part of the process, but five key factors make the overall process a lot longer than you might think.
It takes roughly one to three days for a solar company to install solar panels on your roof. The number of panels and layout of your system can add time based on how intricate the installation has to be. For example, installing 20 solar panels can take between four and six hours if the conditions are right. The best time to install solar panels is spring or fall since installation times are shorter due to reduced demand.
You must apply for an inspection with your utility company when installing a grid-tied solar energy system and connecting it to the grid. After installation is complete, a representative from your utility company will inspect the system to approve the connection to the grid and install a new meter. This process can take between two to three weeks for residential requests.
Every property is different regarding its electrical system and roofing. Most homes are already compatible with a solar panel system installed, but some houses need upgrading before installation can proceed. If upgrades are required, those will add time to the installation process.
Typically, these upgrades include re-roofing, reinforcing the roof, or updating and optimizing electrical panels. Depending on the type and extent of the required upgrade, your installation time can be slowed down by a few weeks or a few days.
Before your solar panel installation can begin, you need the right permits and to pass any necessary inspections. You must apply for all required permits with your local government so they can approve the work on your property. The necessary permits vary depending on your location, but most local governments will require a photovoltaic-specific permit, a construction permit and a general electrical permit. Expect to wait between a week and a month to get these processed and approved.
You will also need to pass several post-installation checks. Your local government will send someone to inspect your new or updated electrical systems to ensure they are up to standard. Passing your inspections is as important as getting the right permits. The busier your local government's inspectors are, the more time it will take to organize the inspection and finalize the reports. This can take up to a week after the date of request.
The solar company you choose is another influencing factor. Their scheduling, crew size, and stock can all affect how long the overall installation process takes. Some companies have a busy calendar or need to order stock. If you need your solar panels installed by a certain date to receive incentives or tax benefits, you must account for all these time-affecting factors.
It takes longer to install commercial solar panels than residential installations. Solar panel systems for commercial buildings are more complicated and often require more complex wiring. Typically, you follow the same processes and take the same factors into account as you would for a residential installation.
Allow one to four weeks for site preparations, system design and planning. On-site panel installation usually takes between one and three days. Getting local authority and government approvals is the most time-consuming process and can take three to 11 weeks to finalize. This leads to an average installation time of four to 15 weeks in total.
While it takes time, investing in the right solar energy system for your home has many benefits. The most significant benefits include:
At S&H Solar, we are committed to helping businesses, homeowners and farmers in rural areas save on their utility bills and reduce their carbon footprint by giving them the very best solar panel equipment and installations. We offer solar panel services for residential and commercial buildings as well as farms throughout Texas. Find out more by requesting a free solar installation quote today, and let us help you soak up the sun.