How to Use the Solar Calculator
The best way to learn about local rebates, your home’s energy potential, and your eventual return on investment is to use our ModSun Solar Cost Calculator (see above). Enter your home address in the box, then click Check My Roof. You’ll get an instant picture of your roof’s productivity, your average energy expenses, and installation costs in your area—whether you decide to buy or loan. We’ll also provide system size recommendations and information about rebates and incentives you may be eligible for. Just select More Info under each purchasing strategy to learn more, and then connect with a solar pro.
Solar Panels Buyer’s Guide for Syracuse, New York
With the costs of solar panels falling, increasing numbers of home and business owners are joining the solar power movement. Installing a solar power system in your home or business requires careful thought and planning to obtain a system suitable for your property and one that provides the maximum benefits of solar energy. With its abundant solar power and some of the best solar incentives and rebates in the country, New York is one of the leading states in solar energy. Syracuse residents will find helpful information below that can get them started on the right path to the energy source of the future.
About Solar Panels in Syracuse, NY
Syracuse’s climate produces temperatures in mid July that hover around 82 degrees. Winter temperatures can be quite frigid with temperatures averaging 15.8 degrees in mid January. Although the average number of sunny days in Syracuse falls below the national average, it still experiences 163 sunny days per year, which makes it a viable location for solar energy.
Solar Panels in a Nutshell
Solar energy is a major player in the renewable energy movement. Solar panels, sometimes referred to as arrays, utilize photovoltaic — PV — cells to absorb the sun’s energy — photons — and convert them into clean solar electricity. Since the sun’s rays are the key player when discussing solar energy, most solar panel systems are mounted in areas that allow direct and constant contact with the sun such as rooftops or even large land areas. Typical residential systems generate anywhere between 2KW and 10KW and depends mostly on the size of the structure, climate and energy requirements.
About Solar Water Heaters for your Syracuse Home
Aside from producing electricity, solar energy is also used to heat water for domestic hot water needs. Solar water heaters utilize both a well-insulated storage tank and solar collectors, most often mounted on the rooftop, to provide domestic hot water. These energy efficient systems use the sun to heat the water directly and/or heat transfer fluid in the collector.
Installing Solar Panels in Syracuse
To achieve the maximum benefit from solar energy, it is recommended that you hire a licensed contractor experienced in solar installation. They will guide you through the entire process from sizing and designing a system suitable for your property to obtaining the necessary permits and overseeing the interconnection phase of the project. After receiving at least three bids for your project from reputable solar contractors and choosing one that you feel comfortable with, you should verify their credentials. Contractors doing business in the state of New York are required to obtain a license and certification in their respective fields and also carry liability and workers compensation insurance. A license search is available through NYC Buildings at www.nyc.gov or by clicking here.
Syracuse Building Department
Permits for solar installation in Syracuse, New York can be obtained through the Syracuse Building Department, 233 Washington Street, Syracuse, NY 13202 (315) 448-8005. An online permit application is available by clicking here.
Paying for Solar Panels
- Home equity loans or “HELOCS” are a common method homeowners use to pay for their solar power systems.
- Through a power purchase agreement or PPA, a third party company maintains and retains ownership of the solar energy system. Homeowners choosing this option pay for only the electricity they use. Since they do not own the system outright, they are not responsible for maintenance and/or upkeep.
- A solar lease is an attractive option for homeowners and businesses alike who don’t want to incur the upfront costs and maintenance of a new system. They simply rent the panels while reaping the benefits from the electricity they produce.
- Important note, since property owners who lease or enter into a power purchase agreement do not own the equipment, they are not entitled to any rebates or tax incentives.
New York State Solar Tax Incentives
Several tax incentives are available in the state of New York are designed to encourage solar energy use. Incentives for residential applications include:
- A state income tax credit equal to 25 percent of the cost of the system not to exceed $5K for grid connected and net metered residential solar electric and solar thermal systems for single and multifamily residences.
- Sales tax exemptions for passive solar space heat, solar space heat, photovoltaics, solar water heat and related equipment installed in residential and multifamily buildings.
- Subject to local option, a 15-year real property tax exemption for the solar and other renewable energy systems. This measure is to prevent the installation of solar energy equipment from increasing property taxes.
Federal Solar Tax Incentives in Syracuse, NY
The Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit, extended through 2016, allows taxpayers to claim a credit of 30 percent of qualified expenditures for solar systems that serve as a primary residence.