Frequently Asked Questions
About Arizona Solar Concepts
Do you install the solar panels yourselves, or are you just a broker?
Yes, our installation teams are all in-house. We do not outsource installation work. We also have an in-house service and technician team.
Where is Arizona Solar Concepts located?
We are located in Tempe, Arizona. We are a local business, and have installed solar on over 5,000 homes in the Valley as well as the Prescott, Sedona, and Payson areas.
Who is the owner or CEO? Are you a local company?
Norah Silva is the CEO and managing member of Arizona Solar Concepts. We are a family-owned small business that has been in operation since 2006.
Do you sell solar battery backup/storage?
Yes—we are a Tesla Powerwall Certified Installer. If you’re considering battery backup and storage, contact us today to set up a consultation in order to size your system correctly and get a quote.
What does “photovoltaic” mean?
Photovoltaic (PV) solar panels generate electricity directly from sunlight via an electronic process that occurs naturally in certain types of material, called semiconductors. This electricity is run through an inverter in order to become the AC power that is used by your home.
Purchasing Solar For Your Home
What happens during a solar consultation? How long will the consultation take?
The purpose of a solar consultation is for us to gather all the information we need to make sure your solar system is perfectly tailored for your home, as well as to give you the opportunity to ask all the questions you have about going solar. During the virtual or in-home appointment, your Solar Consultant will analyze your electric usage, ask questions about future changes in energy consumption, and assess what your goals and expectations are for your solar system. Once the consultant has this information, they will custom tailor a quote for a system(s) to suit your solar wishes, using the financing/purchase options you have indicated you are considering.
A typical appointment lasts about an hour to an hour and a half. Depending on how many questions you have, the time may vary.
Will solar eliminate my electric bill?
Once your solar consultant has designed your preliminary solar system, they will discuss your expectations with you. They will factor in the percentage elimination of your energy charge from solar, which utility company you are connected to, and much more to help you understand what your new electric bill could look like. Arizona Solar Concepts cannot guarantee how utilities will credit excess solar generation, fees they may impose, inflation rates, and much more, thus, Arizona Solar Concepts cannot guarantee financial savings. However, every effort will be taken using our predictive models to create a system that you will be happy with.
Are there any federal and state incentives still available?
Yes. The current 26% federal solar tax credit is set to decrease by the end of 2020.
The state of Arizona offers a $1,000 tax credit for a new solar system. Leased solar systems are not eligible for tax credits.
Please consult with a licensed tax advisor to confirm your eligibility for both the federal and state solar tax credits.
What is your cost per watt?
Our solar panels come in several different wattages; therefore, cost can vary depending on the type of panel you choose for your home. Other factors, such as roof type and financing options, influence the cost as well.
Should I tell my homeowners insurance when I get solar?
Yes, we recommend that you do. While it is not required, this may cover your solar from acts of nature per your homeowner’s insurance policy. Your premium may go up when adding solar onto your policy.
Designing Your System & The Installation Process
How long does the solar installation take?
Our motto is to “Under Promise and Over Deliver.” We tell our clients to expect that typical residential installation will take about 4-6 months, from the moment you sign your contract to the moment the system is commissioned and turned on. In most cases, we are able to “over deliver” and get your project done earlier: check out our client testimonials page.
What type of roofs can you install on?
We specialize in installing solar on many different types of roofs. Take a look at our Residential Portfolio page to see examples of installations we have completed on curved and flat concrete tile, asphalt shingle, flat foam, metal, and clay tile roofs.
What if I don’t want solar panels on my roof?
A few homeowners choose to go with ground-mount solar panel systems instead of traditional roof mounted ones. Ground-mount systems are popular with homeowners with larger properties or uncommon, fragile roof types.
Why does choosing a high-quality solar panel matter? Every company seems to have a great warranty, so I’m more concerned with price.
Arizona Solar Concepts has been installing solar on Arizona homes since 2006. We realize and respect that solar is a significant, long-term investment for homeowners, and poor-quality solar installation and/or low quality solar panels can generate more headaches than power over the decades that it will be on your roof. There are many reasons to be choosy about your solar panels:
- Less breakage in extreme conditions: The conditions on your roof are harsh for electronics, especially in the desert sun and heat where rooftop temperatures can regularly reach 10-20 degrees above the already scorching ambient air temperature. High quality panels are less likely to break due to expanding/contracting during temperature changes, or during the high winds that monsoon storms bring. If and when high-quality panels do experience a break, it only affects a portion of the panel—with low quality panels, even a single crack can bring the entire panel out of service.
- Higher power output in hot temperatures: All solar panels have an optimal operating temperature and lose some efficiency as the temperature drops too high or too low. However, high-quality panels lose less power in extreme temperatures than lower-quality panels do. The fact is, temperature extremes are when you will need the most power, whether it’s because you’re running AC in a Phoenix summer or heating a pool or spa in the winter. Therefore, a high-quality panel is important to help you get the most out of the sun.
- Higher efficiency panels = less space on your roof and fewer penetration points: Using more efficient panels means that less of your roof is covered in panels, so there is more space to expand in the future—whether it’s getting an electric car or adding a hot tub, your roof will have space to produce more power if you need it. As well, more power can be generated on the sunniest, most efficient parts of your roof. On roof types that require penetration to install solar panels, fewer holes means fewer worries.
- Less degradation over time: Every solar panel becomes less efficient with age, but high-quality solar panels degrade much slower and will still be producing the most power decades from now. Maybe you won't notice this in the first few years of owning solar panels on your home, as the years go by, low-quality panels will start to disappoint you more and more.
How is permitting handled? Will I have to do that myself?
We have a dedicated department to handle all phases of design and permitting
for you. Having worked in many cities throughout Arizona, we are experienced
with navigating the different requirements that each city has for solar
installations. We are also experienced with the requirements of different
electric utility providers, including APS, SRP, ED2 and ED3.
What if I have an HOA with specific requirements regarding solar?
As part of the engineering process, we will contact your HOA and make sure that all necessary requirements are met and submit your solar panel system design for approval with your HOA if they require such a review.
Will there be any damage to my roof?
No. Our professional solar installers take excellent care to avoid any structural leaks or damage to your roof.
Should I be concerned about birds or critters nesting under my solar panels?
Solar panels are intentionally installed on racking so there are a few inches of gap between the roof and the solar panels. This helps the panels work most efficiently, as airflow can easily pass underneath the panels and cool them. Most of our clients do not have critter or bird issues because of this gap, but some homeowners find that critters, especially pigeons, may create their new home under their solar panels.
If you have pigeon/critter issues now or think this could be an issue at your home, we recommend you let your solar consultant know. When quoting your system, your Solar Consultant can include “pigeon proofing,” which is a chicken wire that gets installed around the perimeter of your solar panels to deter pigeons and other critters from nesting underneath. There is an additional fee to for pigeon proofing.
After Installation: Customer Support & More
How long is the warranty on solar panels installed by Arizona Solar Concepts?
Arizona Solar Concepts has a 10-year limited workmanship warranty on the systems that we install. The length of manufacturer warranties on the equipment, including the solar panels, inverters, and solar backup batteries, vary by manufacturer and type of financing that you choose. These warranties range from 10 to 25 years. Please speak to your solar consultant for specific details about warranty coverage.
Will I be able to monitor my solar system?
Yes! It is one of the many joys of having solar. This will be set up by one of our technicians once your solar system gets up and running, and you’ll be able to view your new solar system’s production and performance statistics via a mobile app and/or a web browser. We recommend that clients view their monitoring at least once a week, just to make sure their system’s performance appears to be correct. Our customers can call our office with any questions about monitoring.
How does your referral program work?
Arizona Solar Concepts offers a $500 referral bonus for you to refer a friend or family member to us. After they sign up to make the switch to solar with Arizona Solar Concepts, you’ll receive $500 upon the installation of their solar system. You don't even have to be a customer to refer someone, and the best part: there is no limit to the number of referrals you can submit, and no change in referral value for each subsequent referral. It’s our way of saying thank you for both helping our business grow and helping another person make one of the best decisions they’re ever going to make regarding their home.