How does solar work?

Your solar installation

  1. 1

    Solar panels

    Solar panels are made up of photovoltaic (PV) cells, which convert sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity.

  2. 2

    Inverter

    An inverter converts the DC electricity generated by solar panels into the alternating current (AC) electricity used in most homes.

  3. 3

    Monitoring system

    A monitoring system sends information about your solar installation, including the amount of energy it generates, to your solar provider, to maintain optimal system performance.

  4. 4

    Utility grid

    Your solar system is still connected to a local utility grid to provide power after sundown. Connection to the grid also allows your solar system to return to the grid any excess clean energy your system generates during the day. A utility meter measures your power consumption and solar output.

Solar panels and savings illustration

How much can solar save you on electric bills?

Lower monthly electric bills

Solar is more affordable and accessible today because the cost of solar systems has dropped and a range of financing options can help you meet your goals. Whether you lease, take out a loan, or purchase a system, you may be able to start generating savings right away.

Solar can save you money by replacing electricity from the grid with solar electricity generated on your roof. The cost of solar plus any remaining electric bill amount may be lower than what it was before solar.

Key factors that determine whether you can save by going solar

  • How much sun hits your roof
  • How much power you consume
  • Electricity rates
  • Applicable incentives
  • Supportive solar policies
  • Hardware, installation, and monitoring costs

Check your home’s savings

Lock icon Project Sunroof will only share the information you’ve entered on this site when you select solar providers to contact you.
Home illustration

Does solar increase the value of your home?

More value

Home buyers are willing to pay a premium for a home with a purchased solar installation.

Source: Reported in study “Selling into the Sun” by U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory

Lower costs

For homeowners concerned with rising electricity prices, a solar home helps control electricity costs and may provide savings over time. This increase in value applies to homes with purchased solar installations, not financed systems.

Savings illustration

See how much you can save

Lock icon Project Sunroof will only share the information you’ve entered on this site when you select solar providers to contact you.

Interested, but not sure what to expect?

Learn about the process