How Solar Systems Work

to Power Your Home

Solar panels are installed in a sunny location, usually on the roof of your home.  When the sun rises, light hits the solar cells and they start producing electric energy.  This energy is then introduced to your electric service panel where it first goes to power your home.

As the intensity of sunlight grows stronger, your solar panels will produce more energy.  By mid-day most solar powered homes are generating more energy than they are consuming.  When this occurs, excess energy is generally stored in a battery to be consumed later. If any excess energy flows back to the utility grid, your SDG&E meter will actually credit you for the energy you are exporting.

At times when your solar and battery system is not producing enough energy to completely power your home, electric energy will come from SDG&E just like it always has.  Your home will operate as it normally does, whether your electric energy is coming from your solar system or from SDG&E.

With a solar energy system on your home, your SDG&E meter will go forward and backward.  At the end of each month you will either have a debit or credit on your electric bill.  This process is called “Net Metering.”

Benefits of Solar Power

“I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power!”
-Thomas Edison


Pay less each month with solar than you’ve been paying to SDG&E.


The savings don’t stop at the meter. Earn a tax credit at the end of the year too!


Help society transition to a more sustainable model by taking advantage of a renewable resource.


Increase the value of your home, benefiting a future sale or equity loan.

Once you have the equipment,

the fuel is free!

Wouldn’t it feel great to have some independence from SDG&E – your local utility company that continues to raise rates year after year? Just imagine the feeling you’ll get when your monthly bill reads “no payment is required at this time.” Wouldn’t it be great to open only one annual bill that’s about the same than the bills you used to pay every month? Our customers tell us it’s terrific!

Beyond saving money on utility bills, energy generated with solar panels is free of pollutants. Installing solar panels will help you, your family, and your neighbors breathe easier.

Help break our dependence on fossil fuels. While there is disagreement over when we’ll exhaust the supply of fossil fuels, there is no denying that fossil fuel resources are limited.

Installing solar panels is a step toward a more peaceful planet for future generations. There is no need to deploy troops to protect solar energy interests in dangerous, faraway lands. The sun rises in San Diego every day. With your own solar power plant, you can generate clean, renewable energy right where it will be consumed.

Increase the value of your home with solar panels. There is mounting evidence that a San Diego home’s value is increased when it has a solar power system installed.

Take advantage of the solar energy tax credit. In most cases, the Federal government will pay for 30% of the cost of going solar through an income tax credit. We recommend you check with your tax preparer to learn how you can benefit from a solar panel installation.

If you haven’t installed solar panels on your home yet, we’re happy to help you determine if it makes sense for you.

Frequently Asked


Solar Panels represent a big shift from how we’re used to harnessing energy, but it does not have to be confusing. Read on to learn just how easy and beneficial installing solar panels can be for your home!

The energy from solar first powers your home. Excess energy produced is either stored in a battery for later use, or goes out onto the grid. When you are sending power out to the grid, your meter will record that amount and apply a credit to your SDG&E account. If you look at your meter at these times, you will see it go backwards. This credit will be used when you are consuming electricity but your panels are not producing, such as after daylight hours. You will still receive a monthly statement from SDG&E. However, as part of the net metering program, you will only be billed for electricity on an annual basis.

The size of your solar system is determined by how much electricity your home uses, and taking into account how much it may use in the future. You can find your energy usage history by looking up your account on SDG&E’s website. When you sign in to My Account you’ll have access to some great tools to analyze your energy bills and consumption. With this information, a discussion about your future plans in the home, and a look at your site conditions, one of our solar professionals can help you size a solar system to meet your needs.

Solar panels can withstand extreme weather and require virtually no maintenance throughout their entire lifespan. According to a UCSD study, it’s generally not necessary to clean your solar panels. If you want to clean your panels, an occasional light rinse with deionized water when the panels are cool should do it.

A common misconception is that San Diego coastal homes cannot use solar power because the marine layer will dramatically compromise the solar panel’s performance. Because we are located in coastal North County, we have installed thousands of solar modules near the ocean with excellent results. In fact, solar panels perform best in bright but cool conditions. So despite the occasional marine layer, the cooler coastal temperatures are ideal for high-performing solar electric systems.

Storing Your

Solar Energy

How Solar Energy Storage Works

For many homeowners, storing energy generated from your solar power system can be beneficial. While battery storage has been used for decades in off-grid solar applications, it now often makes sense to add energy storage to grid-tied solar systems. Storage systems benefit homeowners by giving them more control over how and when they obtain the energy they need. Batteries can also be set up to provide partial or whole-home backup power in times of SDG&E power outages.