While any business can benefit from going solar, it does require a significant initial investment. Whether or not solar is the right choice for you now will be contingent on several factors. Here are some things to think about that will determine how soon you’ll see a return on your investment:
- Building layout: Today, there are plenty of options for installing solar panels on a commercial property. While ground-mount solar panels require a considerable amount of free space, flat roofs and parking canopies are excellent alternatives that won’t interrupt your normal business operation. Orientation and exposure to the sun will determine the efficiency and generative potential of a solar installation. Temperature is another important factor — improper air circulation can cause panels to heat up, decreasing their productivity by up to 25%.
- Financing: There’s no question that a full commercial solar installation is an expensive project. While solar power will pay for itself over time, the initial expense can be prohibitive for many businesses. Fortunately, there are multiple ways to reduce or defer these costs. First, look for any federal, state and municipal incentives — many areas offer tax rebates and other programs to encourage small businesses to use solar power. Second, consider alternate financing arrangements. At Bright Eye Solar, we offer affordable commercial solar leasing options that provide you with a complete turnkey system for a small monthly fee.
- Building efficiency: A commercial solar installation will only be useful if the rest of your facility is working its best, too. We recommend all business customers complete a thorough energy audit that identifies leaks and other inefficiencies. If your primary concern is keeping utility costs down, there may be other investments, such as upgrading your insulation or HVAC appliances, that make more sense at this time.
- Zoning and aesthetic considerations: In an ideal world, the possibilities for installing a solar array on a commercial property would be limitless. However, that’s not always the case. Building codes, zoning bylaws or regulatory considerations may prohibit certain typesof installation. You may also be concerned about the curb appeal of a rooftop solar panel or about the impact it will have on your branding. While these issues may seem superficial, they should be given proper consideration when weighing whether or not solar power is right for your business.
- Customer goodwill: The impact a solar installation can have on your customers is hard to quantify, but it’s there. Increasingly, consumers choose to work with businesses that are committed to social and environmental responsibility. A large solar panel outside your headquarters makes a strong statement about what type of organization you are and where your priorities lie.
When considering the above, it’s important to remember that commercial solar is never a one-size-fits-all solution. There are alternatives to installing a large array that can still save you money on a month-to-month basis. A small installation or solar water heater can reduce your reliance on the grid without a substantial initial investment or long-term leasing commitment. To explore your options with a Bright Eye Solar representative, get in touch and book a consultation today.