In the sunny cities of Orange County, like Anaheim, Irvine, Orange, and Santa Ana, businesses are turning to solar energy as a sustainable power source. It’s no secret that solar panels offer numerous benefits for both the environment and businesses looking to cut their energy costs. However, amidst the excitement of going solar, business owners often have questions, and one of the most common inquiries is, “How long do solar panels last?”
In this article, we’re going to shed light on the longevity of commercial rooftop solar panels and unravel the mysteries of their lifespan. We’ll explore the industry standards and factors affecting their durability and dive into some local insights. Plus, we’ll introduce you to REPOWER Orange, your trusted local solar installer, serving the communities of Anaheim, Irvine, Orange, and Santa Ana. We’re here to help your business harness the power of the sun and reap the benefits for years to come.
Let’s embark on this solar journey and discover how sustainable solar panels truly are. Whether you’re a retail store, office building, car wash, or car dealership, the future of your energy needs could be brighter than ever.
How Long Do Solar Panels Last?
First things first, one of the burning questions most business owners have about solar panels is their lifespan. After all, you want to know if this investment is in it for the long haul.
The good news is that solar panels are in it for the long game. The industry standard boasts a lifespan of 25 to 30 years. That’s a lot of sunny days! But there’s a little twist you should know about.
Solar Panel Degradation Rate
Let’s chat about the solar panel degradation rate.
Over time, solar panels mature and lose a bit of their efficiency. On average, they decline at a rate of about 0.5% to 1% per year.
The degradation rate isn’t universal; it depends on the quality and type of solar panels you choose. Check this out:
- Panasonic: These panels age with a degradation rate of just 0.26% per year. After 25 years, they’re still kicking at 93.5% of their original power.
- SolarWorld: SolarWorld panels age gracefully at 0.35% per year. After a quarter of a century, they’re still rocking at about 91.25% of their original power.
- SunPower: SunPower panels are the cool kids on the block, with a degradation rate of only 0.25% per year. So, after 25 years, they’re still going strong at about 94% of their original power.
And here’s the secret sauce – solar panels often outlast their warranty periods, especially if they receive a little TLC and dodge hail, fire, or vandalism.
How Much Do Solar Panels Cost?
Another question that’s bound to pop up is the cost of these solar panels. Well, it’s not a one-size-fits-all answer. Solar panel costs depend on a few things, like size, quality, efficiency, and installation.
According to EnergySage, in 2022, the average cost of solar panels for commercial buildings in Orange County was around $2.51 per watt. So, if you’re thinking about a typical 50-kilowatt (kW) system, you’re looking at about $125,500 before incentives.
But here’s the twist – those incentives and financing options can play a sweet melody on your upfront cost.
- Federal tax credit: There’s a 26% tax credit you can snag on your federal income taxes for the system cost in 2023. If your system costs $125,500, you can wave goodbye to $32,630 in taxes.
- State rebates: California has its own rebate program called the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP), giving rebates to commercial customers installing battery storage systems alongside their solar panels. The size and type of your battery system determine your rebate amount.
- Net metering: Net metering lets you sell any extra electricity your solar panels make back to the grid at a retail rate.
- Power purchase agreements (PPAs): PPAs let you pay for the electricity your solar panels make at a fixed rate per kilowatt-hour (kWh) over a period (usually 10 to 25 years). You don’t worry about installation or maintenance; you pay for what you use.
And guess what? At REPOWER Orange, we’ll help you explore the best solar solution that matches your wallet and your needs.
We’ll even help you navigate the maze of incentives and financing options in Orange County.
How to Maintain Solar Panels?
Lastly, you might wonder, “How do I keep my solar panels in tip-top shape?” Well, they’re pretty low-maintenance, but they still need a little attention to shine their brightest.
Keep Them Clean
Rule number one: keep solar panels clean. Dust, dirt, bird droppings, and other debris can pile up and make your solar panels work less efficiently. So, roll up your sleeves and give them a gentle scrub once or twice a year. Just use a soft brush, a hose, and some mild soap – avoid harsh chemicals, as they can do more harm than good.
Oh, and don’t clean when it’s scorching outside; you don’t want your panels to crack under pressure.
Inspect Your Solar Panels
Rule number two: inspect your panels. Check your panels for any damage, like cracks, chips, scratches, or discoloration. Also, give the wiring, connectors, and mounting hardware a once-over for loose or rusty parts.
If you spot any issues, don’t be a DIY superhero – call in the professionals at REPOWER Orange. Trying to fix them yourself can void your warranty and create more trouble.
At REPOWER Orange, we’re not just about solar panel installation in Orange County. We offer maintenance and monitoring services too.
We’ll be your solar guides, doing regular inspections and cleaning.
Wrapping Things Up
Solar panels are the real deal – they save you money, protect our planet, and make your business stand out. They’ve got a solid 25 to 30 years (or more!) of power to give.
And they’re not just affordable; they’re practically budget-friendly, thanks to those incentives and financing options. Maintenance? It’s a breeze, just a bit of cleaning and keeping an eye out for trouble.
So, if you’re an Orange County business owner thinking about going solar, reach out to us at REPOWER Orange. We’re your local solar wizards, ready to guide you through every step of your solar adventure. We’ll make sure you get the best deal and top-notch service.
- How can I determine if my Orange County business is a good fit for solar panels?
Solar panels offer advantages to various businesses in Orange County, including those in Anaheim, Irvine, Orange, and Santa Ana. Factors like roof space, location, and energy requirements come into play. Our team at REPOWER Orange can evaluate your specific needs during a consultation
- What is the typical payback period for a commercial solar panel system in Orange County?
The payback period varies depending on factors like system size, energy consumption, and available incentives. However, many Orange County businesses experience a return on investment within 4 to 7 years, with ongoing savings.
- Can solar panels in Anaheim power my business during local power outages?
Absolutely! With a solar-plus-storage system, you can rely on stored energy during local Orange County blackouts, ensuring uninterrupted power for essential operations. Explore battery storage options with us to enhance reliability.
- What kind of maintenance do Anaheim solar panels require, and how often should they be performed?
Anaheim solar panels are low-maintenance in Orange County’s sunny climate, but regular cleaning and inspections are essential. Typically, cleaning is recommended once or twice a year, with annual inspections. Our Orange County-based maintenance services at REPOWER Orange can handle these tasks for you.
- Are there any Orange County-specific tax incentives or rebates available for businesses considering solar panels?
Yes, Orange County businesses in Irvine, Anaheim, and Santa Ana can benefit from various incentives, including the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC), state rebates, and net metering. These programs can significantly reduce the upfront cost of your solar system and improve the financial outlook for your Orange County project. We can guide you through these incentives during your consultation.