Business owners are always looking for new and creative ways to improve their bottom line. Making the switch from traditional power and electricity to solar energy is one way that you could minimize the amount you spend on power bills while helping out the environment at the same time. There are plenty of benefits when it comes to switching to solar if you’re ready to take the leap.
Is your commercial building a great fit for new solar panels? Learn more about the requirements for solar energy in this detailed guide!
When Do You Use Electricity?
As you might have already gathered, solar power works best during the daylight hours when the sun is shining brightly. Evaluate when your business uses the most energy to determine if solar is the right fit for you. Solar may be the best option for your commercial building if you use most of your electricity during the day.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t make good use of solar if the bulk of your electricity is used overnight. Electric power from during the daytime hours can be stored and used overnight as well. It’s just one consideration to think about when deciding if solar is the right fit for you.
How Much Roof Space Do You Have?
One of the factors that must be considered before determining if your commercial building is a good fit for solar is the amount of roof space you have. It likely comes as no surprise that you will need a great deal of open roof space if you want to install panels. Make sure that there are no obstructions on the roof that would interfere with the placement of your panels, such as chimneys or smokestacks.
The number of solar panels that your business requires will be unique to your needs. However, you’ll see a bigger return on investment with a larger system. This is why you need to make sure that you have plenty of space available.
Is Your Roof Sloped or Flat?
Another factor pertaining to your roof is its pitch. Most experts agree that a sloped roof tends to be better for solar than a flat roof. This is because a sloped roof allows your panels to be exposed to more direct sunlight, improving the amount of energy you can generate. The panels will naturally face in one of the four directions.
Because the roof is sloped, the panels will be perpendicular to the sun’s rays which makes it more likely that you will produce the energy you are hoping for.
A flat roof can also be modified to hold solar panels, but it is more difficult. It may require some engineering work to get the roof in shape to hold solar panels. It can be done, but it may come at an additional cost. For example, it may require more hardware and racking to hold your solar panels in place on a flat roof. This same level of detail may not be required on a sloped roof.
Is Your Roof in Good Shape?
In addition to evaluating the roof space that you have, you should also consider the condition of your roof overall. Once solar panels are installed, they can last for decades to come – as long as your roof is in good condition. You want to ensure that your roof can outlast your solar panels so that you can minimize the amount of work necessary to access this clean source of energy.
Be sure to consult a roofing expert to determine if your roof is in good enough shape prior to installing a new solar system. If you need shingles replaced or even a full roof replacement, it’s best to take care of this upgrade before you capitalize on the benefits of solar power.
This may mean delaying your switch to renewable energy, but you will be grateful for the update to your roof later on.
Do You Plan To Go Off-Grid?
Consider what your long-term goals are when installing solar panels in your commercial business. Most business owners are solely interested in improving their bottom line and slashing the costs associated with traditional electricity. If they could, many people would make the switch to solar panels exclusively and take their business off-grid.
If this describes you, then you may need to invest in other technology to assist you. It is relatively uncommon for a business to go entirely off-grid unless they have an extensive solar panel system with solar batteries to store power until it’s next required. Most business owners find that they may need to tap into local electricity during peak hours, but solar can substantially cut down your bill.
Do You Plan To Sell Your Building?
Business owners who are planning to make the switch to solar energy often want to ensure that they own their building before making such a large investment. As long as you own the building and meet the other criteria found here, then you might be a great candidate for solar in Manitoba. However, you will want to think about the long-term prospect of your building before making the investment.
When you plan to sell the business in the years ahead or move to a new location, you need to consider how solar panels will affect that move. The good news is that solar panels can boost the resale value of the property because your commercial building will be greener and will have a lower operating cost when it comes to utility bills.
Installing Solar Panels on Your Commercial Business
You have made it through this checklist and determined that solar energy could be a great fit for your commercial business. If you are ready to take the first steps toward solar in Manitoba, be sure to give Powertec Solar a call. Our experts can evaluate your building and your specific needs to determine if solar is the right choice for your commercial business!