Some people are concerned that the Massachusetts location in the northern USA and its frequent cloudy days will reduce the efficiency of solar panels. In fact, Photovoltaic (PV) solar panels use both direct and indirect sunlight to generate electric power. They are still productive even when there is cloud coverage.
Of course, they are most efficient when they are soaking up direct sunlight on sunny days but can still be effective when the light is reflected or partially obstructed by clouds. On average, solar panels will generate 10% to 25% of their normal power output on days with heavy cloud coverage.
With the clouds often come rain, which helps solar panels work better. It makes sense. Rain washes away any dirt or dust that has collected on the solar panels so that they can more efficiently absorb sunlight.
Sunny days in Massachusetts
Massachusetts has about 197 sunny days a year, which is just slightly below average. This number is usually plenty to provide ample sunlight for energy savings. Another concern is that the frequent New England nor’easters and storms in the Bay State may damage solar equipment. This is a possibility but when selecting a solar company, be sure to discuss the warranty they offer to see if it covers such an occurrence.
The breakeven point for solar in Massachusetts
When can you expect that your investment in a solar system to break even and begin to pay you back? In MA the average payback period is about nine years with a typical range of six to twelve years. Even if your breakeven point is at the longer end, you’ll still end up saving money in the long run. See the math below.
Net Metering – What is it and how does it relate to solar in Massachusetts
In Massachusetts, there is a mandate that you will get a credit for every kilowatt-hour of energy you send to the grid at the retail rate for every kilowatt-hour you pull from the grid. This is a huge benefit for any solar customer. In MA it is especially crucial because the electricity rates are nearly double the national average. The Massachusetts net metering policy helps you to minimize your electric bills and maximize your savings.
Here’s another way to calculate your savings with a solar system: Massachusetts has the fourth highest electricity rates in the nation. The average resident pays around $132 per month for electricity. With net metering, you can save $1,585 or more on energy every year… that’s around $33,000 over the lifetime of a MA resident’s solar PV equipment and that’s after the panels have paid for themselves.
An Impact on the environment in Massachusetts
In addition to the monetary benefits of going solar, there is a positive impact on the environment. Solar panels are eco-friendly. Solar power reduces the dependence on fossil fuels, reducing emissions, pollution, global warming, and your carbon footprint.
Incentives for going solar in MA
There are Massachusetts rebates and incentives for converting to solar power, which change from year to year. We’ll explore what is currently available on both the State and Federal level. Check our blog on this topic and know that Golden Group Roofing will ensure that you are aware of any and all incentives available when you decide to go solar!
Have questions? Contact our roofing experts today.
If you have questions about solar or are thinking about adding a solar system to your roof, call Golden Group Roofing at 508-873-1884 or schedule a one-hour solar consultation with one of our roofing experts.