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Frequently Asked Questions

How do gov’t tax incentives work?

A taxpayer may claim a credit of 30% of qualified expenditures for a system that serves a dwelling unit located in the United States that is owned and used as a residence by the taxpayer. Expenditures with respect to the equipment are treated as made when the installation is completed. If the installation is at a new home, the "placed in service" date is the date of occupancy by the homeowner. Expenditures include labor costs for on-site preparation, assembly or original system installation, and for piping or wiring to interconnect a system to the home. If the federal tax credit exceeds tax liability, the excess amount may be carried forward to the succeeding taxable year. The maximum allowable credit, equipment requirements and other details vary by technology, as outlined below.

  • 30% for systems placed in service by 12/31/2019
  • 26% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2019 and before 01/01/2021
  • 22% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2020 and before 01/01/2022
  • There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008
  • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2006, and on or before December 31, 2021
  • The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

Source: Energy.gov
Source: Energy Star

The implications of this information are very important; there are some key pieces that every potential solar customer needs to take into account. First, it’s important to note that this incentive is a tax credit and NOT a rebate. So, to even qualify for this incentive, you must be a federal taxpayer. For example, those on Social Security, disability, or those in other tax-exempt situations do not qualify for the incentive. Second, this is not an instant rebate on the price of your system. It’s a tax credit. So, if you are expecting a 30% subsidy on your solar system, that’s actually not the way this incentive works. Also, while primary and secondary residences do qualify for the tax credit, rentals do not qualify.

For specific advice on how this tax credit might help you in your specific circumstance, seek the counsel of a professional tax/financial planner or contact the IRS.

Additional Incentives

Occasionally, local utility companies will offer additional incentives and rebates to solar customers. Check with BOTH your local utility company and your solar company to see if any of these programs and incentives are available to you. Some companies may tell you that you qualify for certain incentives; however, legislation is constantly changing as the solar market grows—and what might have been true a few months ago may not be the case any longer. For example, in Utah, Rocky Mountain Power used to offer a rebate to new residential solar customers. They have since discontinued their Utah Solar Incentive Program. Check in to make sure you are coming into your solar decision with all the most current and correct information.

Source: Rocky Mountain Power

Is there a difference in my solar power versus my power from the utility company?

There is no noticeable difference in service between solar power and the power provided by your utility company. The only difference you’ll notice is in your power bill and your peace of mind.

Will I need to keep my utility?

Yes. During low light, nighttime, and snowy days, your solar power production can be greatly reduced. (To read about how a microinverter can help offset this dip in production, click here.) Because of this reduced production, you’ll need power from your utility company as a backup supply to your solar power so you don’t see an interruption in power to your home.

How do power credits work?

If you are producing more power than your household is using, this excess power is sent back to your utility company in the form of credits that can be applied to months where your energy consumption might be higher. (Click here to see how a NET meter works.)

How much will a system cost?

Every home is different, as are every home’s energy needs. Depending on your solar array and how many panels you decide to purchase, this cost can fluctuate quite a bit. Have an Any Hour solar expert come to your home to do an energy assessment and give you a free price quote. Or, if you’ve already had a solar representative in your home, please allow us to come and give you a second opinion--absolutely free. (Click here for a free solar quote & energy assessment.)

Will it replace my electrical bill? How does that work?

Many people wonder if they will see interruptions in their power with a solar power system. If the system is installed correctly, the answer is no! Your home is still connected to your city’s power. During the night, or on cloudy days when the sun isn’t providing much light, your home will still be able to draw from the city’s power supply. But here’s where the savings come in. On sunny days, when your solar power system is providing abundant power for your home, the excess power is actually put back into your city’s power grid. This excess power will show up on your bill as a credit every month.

Isn’t solar energy just for hippies and rich people?

Our strongest market consists of homeowners who want to reduce their monthly energy costs. They are people who want freedom from rising utility prices and want to feel good about using renewable, clean resources. Does this sound like you? Then maybe solar energy is the right fit for your family too.

How long will it take to recoup my investment?

The answer to this question depends on your energy consumption and the solar array you end up installing on your home. It also depends on how high or low your existing power bills are. Have a solar expert come to your home to do an energy assessment--it’s absolutely free and will answer any questions you might have about how a solar system will work for you and your family. Your solar expert can also explain how you can take advantage of federal tax incentives to make your system even more affordable.

How will installing a solar system affect my property value?

On average, homes with functioning rooftop solar arrays sell for about $14-15,000 higher than a comparable home without solar. So, not only can your solar system save you monthly on your utility bills, but it can also help you gain overall value on your home. We call that a double bonus!

Do I have options in putting my solar system together?

Yes! You have myriad product, placement, and production options. Beware any solar company that offers a one-size-fits-all approach to solar energy. Just as every home is different, so are every family’s energy and budget needs. This is where asking for multiple second opinions might serve you very well, to be sure you’re getting the best price, products, and service for your needs.

How much control do I have over the process?

The answer to this question depends entirely on your solar company. At Any Hour Services, we make sure that the customer has the option of being as involved as they want to be. We want our customers to be involved to their level of comfort. Whether you want to set the process in motion and enjoy a very hands-off experience or you want to be involved on every level, we will accommodate your preferences. Our method of installation is done on the exterior of the home and is very unobtrusive. Most of our clients choose to go about their regular day while we complete the installation.

How do I monitor my system’s efficiency?

We work with Enphase to bring you microinverter technology that allows you to not only monitor your system’s entire array, but also monitor each individual panel you have on your roof. You can see which panels might be producing more at peak hours and which are in the shade; you can also monitor your energy usage based on energy input and output. View Enphase Pamphlet

Does a solar system work during the winter and/or overcast days?

How do solar panels harness the power of the sun, when seasonal conditions can be so variable? The answer is in something called a solar power inverter. And in the solar industry, the two most common types of inverters are string inverters and microinverters. A string inverter is relatively simple: when the sun shines, it produces. When the sun shines a lot, a consumer can potentially experience a significant spike in production. However, the downside is that a string inverter also needs a minimum amount of voltage, in the form of sun power, to even kick on. So on most cloudy, inverted, or snowy days, there likely won’t be enough UV rays to trigger production. Furthermore, if one of the solar panels on a string is in the shade or covered in snow, for example, the whole string of panels stops producing. Microinverters, on the other hand, have the ability to regulate the voltage on each individual solar panel. In layman’s terms, this means that while microinverters might not see the dramatic spikes in production on really sunny days, they will maintain production levels and will keep producing, even in low or filtered light. Additionally, if one panel is in the shade or covered in snow, they all operate individually and one panel won’t take the whole string down. View Infographic of how this works.

Is my home a good candidate for solar?

  • Generally, the best candidates for solar are homes with roofs facing south, southeast or southwest, with unobstructed access to the sun. This means no trees, adjoining roof lines, or roof installations block the bright UV rays of the sun. But there are many factors that go into determining what the optimal position would be for your solar array. Therefore, we use a meteorological database with over a century of information to assess your home and make a recommendation for where you could maximize your solar income. (Source: Click Here)
  • Pro Tip: When researching solar companies, make sure your company’s representative is giving you information based on Utah shade rates. Since many companies are located out of state, it’s vital that you are getting accurate information for your particular climate and air conditions.

How long does the solar installation take from the time I purchase my system?

It depends on the time of year, your city, and your utility company. Demand is generally lower in the fall and winter months, so installing a solar array during those seasons could reduce your wait time. Also, your solar application has to be approved by your city, which could determine wait times at that stage as well. From that point, your utility company then has to process your application and send out one of their technicians to install a net meter on your home. Once all of these steps are complete, your solar company will send out their technicians to do the actual install. This process could take a few weeks at times of lower demand, and could take upward of three months or more during peak season, in the spring and summer. (View our in depth article for more information about installation

How do I choose the right solar company?

Currently, there are around 92 registered solar companies in Utah--and you can find them without even looking. They’re in your mailbox, on your radio and TV, on billboards and passing cars--they’re even knocking on your door! Suddenly, there are hundreds of solar companies that seem to have popped up overnight, offering the best products at the best deals, all competing for your business. With so many companies out there, how do you choose the one that’s right for you, with the service that’s best for your home? And how can you be sure it’s a business that’s here to stay? View Full Article

(Source: SEIA.org)

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We’re Any Hour Services and we’ve been helping customers for over half of a century. We never outsource our work to second- or third-party companies. This means the same people who come to talk to you about your solar panels will be the same people who install and maintain your panels. We’re a local company, invested in providing community with the best service and the most accurate information. And most importantly, it means that when we guarantee our work, we’ll be around for another 50 years or more to honor that guarantee.

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  • 30% Federal tax credit. read more
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