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Solar energy is an affordable alternative energy source that can be used to help heat and power your home or business. The active solar technology becoming more common is Solar Photovoltaic (Solar PV). Solar PV systems use solar cells to convert sunlight directly into electricity.

Solar PV systems are comprised of solar panels, inverters, breakers and mounting equipment. The solar panel generates power by converting sunlight to direct current electricity. Inverters are then used to convert the direct current electricity into alternating current to be used in your home.

Considerations

  • The potential for solar energy varies across Canada and British Columbia.
  • Before installing a solar system on your home’s roof, consider your roof’s current condition and if rework is needed in the near future.
  • Assessing how much energy your home requires on a daily, monthly, yearly, and seasonal basis will give you an idea of whether solar energy is economically viable for your home.
  • Engage an experienced and reputable solar energy installer to learn more about the right system for your home.

Rebate Programs

The BC Hydro Net Metering Program is designed for those who generate electricity for their own use. When you generate more than you need, you sell it to BC Hydro. When you don’t generate enough to meet your needs, you buy it from them. Any excess electricity is carried over to the following month and applied to that month’s consumption. If any excess power is left over a year from your net metering anniversary date, you will receive a financial credit from BC Hydro.

Did you see a building science or energy efficiency term you did not understand? Check out our glossary.