New York Grid Tie Solar Electric
It is actually more cost-effective to install a Solar Panel System in New York than it is in traditional solar energy hot-spots like Southern California. Currently, New York has the third highest electric prices in the United States, far above the national average price – and continuing to increase at alarmingly high rates.
Because of the weather patterns, the cost of electricity and current laws in New York for Renewable Energy, the most cost-effective and efficient type of Solar Panel System to purchase and install is a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System. These systems maintain a connection to the electric grid (where you purchase all of your electricity from right now), and allow for a two way flow of electricity; you can draw electricity from the grid as needed to meet your demand, and you can contribute excess electricity back to the electric grid as available, which the Electric Company is required to purchase from you at retail rate. This is known as net-metering, and it is one of the largest advantages that Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems in New York have over Off-Grid Solar Panel Systems.
These huge advantages, and the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems are made possible because of the cost of electricity in New York. The charts below illustrate the historic electric prices in NY (5 year intervals from 1990 to 2005 - and 1 year intervals from 2005 to 2010) to demonstrate the current electric price increases, and how this trend could effect prices through the end of the decade.
When you work out the math following the historic and current electric price increase trends, New Yorkers could easily be paying more than $0.20 per kwh for electricity by the year 2010. This, however, does not account for accelerated price increases due to politically instabilities around the world, increased demand and decreased supply, or the devaluation of the US Dollar in the world market.
If these trends hold true, the average New Yorker could have their electric bill increase by over 70% between 1990 and 2010 – just two decades. This 20-Year trend shows just how fast the cost-of-living in New York is increasing, and explains why New Yorkers, like millions of Americans are becoming increasingly in debt and cash strapped.
However, in New York, a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System can help homeowners alleviate some of their electrical costs over the coming years. And, Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems are not nearly as expensive as they once were, and, on top of that, there are Federal and State incentives and credits to help offset some of the cost of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System in New York, and lenders throughout the nation who offer low or no interest home loans and mortgages to pay for the installation and purchase of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System.
What is a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System?
Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems are specially designed solar electric systems that are designed to maintain connection to the Electric Grid (this is where you purchase your electricity from currently). This connection is bi-directional (power can be drawn from and put on the electric grid from your home), which has many benefits over Off-Grid Solar Panel Systems which do not have an electric grid connection.
What are the Benefits of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System?
There are many benefits to a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System. Many of these benefits are financial, and help homeowners more quickly recoup their initial investment, and provide higher lifetime returns on their investment.
Constant Backup – with a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System the Electric Grid (a constant and uninterrupted source of electricity) is used as your backup power system. Off-Grid Solar Panel Systems do not have this connection, and require expensive battery backups and fuel powered generators to operate as a backup and ensure uninterrupted operation. A Grid-Tie Solar Panel System draws backup power directly from the electric grid and does not need these expensive additional components – though they can be added to provide further autonomy and sustainability.
System Size Flexibility – Because of the connection to the electric grid, and an unending source of backup power, Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems can be sized to offset any percentage of your electrical needs. An Off-Grid Solar Panel System must supply 100% of your electrical needs (and must be oversized to accommodate cloudy days and electrical demand spikes), but a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System can be sized to offset 1 to 100% of your electrical needs – allowing you, the homeowner, the flexibility to purchase a great Solar Panel System and stay within your budget limits.
Net Metering Laws – New York is one of the many states around the country that has net-metering laws in effect to help homeowners offset more of the cost of their Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems. Net-Metering allows you to contribute any excess electricity your Grid-Tie Solar Panel System creates to electric grid, and requires the electric company to purchase this electricity from you at the same retail rate you pay for electricity when you use it as a backup. Essentially, you can turn your electric meter backwards with a properly sized Grid-Tie Solar Panel System by contributing more electricity to the grid than you draw in downtimes. This is a great way to recoup your initial investment – and like incentives and credits that are valid for 1, or a few, year(s), net-metering never expires.
Federal & NY State Incentives & Tax Credits – The Federal Government provides a 30% tax credit to New Yorkers for the purchase and installation of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System with a maximum incentive of $3,000.00. NY State offers residents a 25% tax credit (up to a maximum of $5,000) for the purchase of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System. Additionally, NYSERDA offers New Yorkers a cash rebate of $4.00 / Watt DC to further offset the cost of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System. Combined with electrical savings and net-metering gains, these Federal and State Solar Incentives and Tax Credits can provide several thousands of dollars in funding for New York Homeowners looking to purchase and install a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System.
What are the Components in a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System?
Grid-Tie Solar Panel Systems have a number of very specific components that are required to make them work properly and efficiently, and provide short payback periods and high returns on your investment. Any good Grid-Tie Solar Panel System that you purchase will have these components included so that you do not have to peck and hunt from company to company trying to locate the parts that you need to get your Grid-Tie Solar Panel System installed and running.
The illustration below shows a typical Grid-Tie Solar Panel System in New York.
What Financial Assistance is Available for New Yorkers?
Despite the obvious financial and ecological benefits of a Grid-Tie Solar Panel System, they are still quite expensive, and require a rather significant initial investment to purchase and install before you can begin saving money. Luckily, there are tax credits and tax incentives available to help offset the costs of New Yorkers, and a number of federally-funded lenders who offer low, or no interest mortgages and home loans to help pay for your Grid-Tie Solar Panel System.