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Swiftwater Electric & Solar

Have a solar-related question? We have the answer! Check out our FAQs below to learn more.

Are there any local or federal incentives for going solar?

Yes, there are several local and federal incentives for going solar. Let's take a look!

Tax Credit: The federal solar tax credit has been fully restored and extended by Congress. From 2022 to 2032, individuals and businesses that install solar and/or battery backup systems can receive a 30% tax credit, which is equivalent to a dollar-for-dollar reduction in their income tax liability, according to the IRS. This means that battery storage systems are now eligible for the credit on their own, without being coupled with solar installations.

Sales Tax: There is no sales tax on solar in Washington State!

Net Metering: OLPALCO (Orcas Power & Light Cooperative) offers a 1:1 bill credit for any electricity generated by your system that you don't use! On those long summer days, you'll likely produce more electricity than you can use. When that happens, the extra goes to OLPALCO and they give you a bill credit that is automatically applied at night or in the winter when you're not generating as much solar power as you need.

Net Metering Buy Back: At the end of April, if you still have net metering credits you didn't use over the winter, OLPALCO states they will send you a check for them at a rate of $0.088/kWh. They are the only utility in the state that does this.

Utility Financing: OLPALCO offers an amazing offer for financing solar arrays. They will lend up to the cost of the array at 2% interest with a 10-year repayment period. This will appear as part of your power bill. This is by far the best financing option in the state.

Contact Swiftwater Electric & Solar today for solar installation you can rely on!

Do solar panels increase the value of your home?

Yes! Studies indicate that homes equipped with solar panels not only sell faster but also fetch a higher price than comparable homes lacking them. Zillow reported that homes with solar panels sold for an average of 4.1% more than those without. Investing in a solar energy system is different from upgrading the kitchen appliances or bathroom décor, as it adds an increasing value to your property as power rates continue to increase. Plus, it won't go out of style. To find out how solar energy can increase your home's value, visit www.pvvalue.com. Our solar electric company suggests this site because PVValue is a federal tool to provide real-estate comps for houses with solar.

Can my HOA prevent me from installing solar?

No. In Washington State, laws prevent homeowner associations from banning the installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, as long as the systems meet the necessary health, safety, and performance standards set by local and state permitting authorities. Typically, the solar PV system design we present in our quote satisfies any concerns the HOA may have. Additionally, our electrical contractors are happy to meet with the HOA board, address any concerns they may have, and review the state law to demonstrate how our system complies with it.

What sort of financing is available?

There are different financial options available depending on what county you live in. Contact us today so that we can help determine which one is the best for you. Whether you need a solar panel or backup generator installation, we're the team with the top financing options!

Will my solar panels cause glare that will affect my neighbors?

Solar panels are designed to absorb sunlight rather than reflect it. As a matter of fact, solar panels are made with anti-reflective glass that meets the strict standards for solar installation at airports, where glare can pose a significant risk to pilots.

How long do solar panels last?

The lifespan of a solar panel system depends on several factors, including the technology used and the local climate. Typically, our team has found that solar panels can generate power for 30 to 50 years, and manufacturers typically provide a 25-year warranty on the power output. However, many experts believe that solar panels will continue to produce electricity for much longer than the warranty period. Some balance of system (BOS) components may need to be replaced over time, such as the inverter, which usually has a 10 or 25-year warranty according to our experience in the industry. Since our region experiences mild weather conditions, solar panel systems installed in our area should have extended lifetimes. In addition, the panels themselves are remarkably durable and can withstand hail and other severe environmental conditions. At Swiftwater Electric & Solar, we prioritize using best practices specifically tailored to our climate to ensure that your system is built to last. Our solar electric company stands behind the quality of our work and offers a 10-year craftsmanship warranty on all solar installations.

Do I need to replace my roof before installing solar?

Forbes found that solar panels generally have a lifespan of more than 25 years, so as a rule of thumb, we recommend replacing a roof prior to installing solar panels if your roof has less than 10 to 12 years of useful life. Also, consider that a solar array can extend the life of your roof because the panels protect the roof by shielding it from UV rays. Call electrical contractors you can depend on for efficient solar panel installations!

How often do I need to clean my solar panels?

We recommend that every other year you clean your solar panels. It also depends on the area you live in and the weather in your region. For more information on this topic and similar ones such as EV charger installation, give us a call!

Are solar panels really free?

If you have a great site for solar panels, your electrical bill can be replaced with your solar panels. Other installments like an EV charger installation can also help lower that energy bill. According to Zippia, there are over 292,781 licensed electricians operating in the United States at this time. Work with one that you can rely on! Our team is here to answer all your solar panel-related questions.