Solar - How to Get Started

Highlights

  • Installing a system on your home does not mean you will no longer receive a monthly bill from NV Energy.
  • Your home or business must be connected to the NV Energy distribution system.
  • Solar is intermittent – meaning the sun isn't always shining – so at some points in time you will receive electricity from NV Energy.

Thinking about putting solar panels on your home or business?  We'd like you to know important information and what questions to ask a potential contractor to help you make the choice that's right for you.

Here's what you should know if you're considering installing a system:

  • Customers who plan to install, or who have already installed a system must complete a net metering application with NV Energy.
  • You will continue to receive a bill from NV Energy for the basic service charge and other societal charges even if you install panels on your home or business.
  • Net metered customers may choose to participate in the program under either a standard rate schedule or a time of use rate schedule.
  • Most individual systems do not have battery storage, so your system must be connected to NV Energy's electric grid to operate.
  • NV Energy's electrical grid is crucial to your ability to utilize net metering.
  • A customer-owned system may not produce all the energy you need, all the time (for example at night, when the sun isn't shining).
  • Because solar is an intermittent resource, at certain times your home or business will use more electricity from NV Energy than it puts back on the electrical grid.
  • Any system you install must comply with utility design standards, local building codes or jurisdiction, fire department policies, and NV Energy standards etc.
  • Net metering requires a bi-directional meter, called a net meter, which is capable of measuring energy flow in both directions.  .  If you participate in one of NV Energy's renewable energy rebate programs, you must also install a generation meter that will measure the amount of energy produced by your renewable installation.
  • Always use a licensed contractor.
  • You will be required to sign a net metering agreement with NV Energy prior to energizing your system.
  • NV Energy will conduct a verification of the system prior to energizing.

Solar Checklist

Download and print this handy solar checklist (pdf format)

Solar Checklist

20 Questions to ask your contractor before you decide:

  1. Is my house suitable for solar panels?
  2. How can you guarantee the output of the system?
  3. How do I get to a "zero" bill?
  4. Who handles my homeowners association application?
  5. Should I own or lease?
  6. Are there ongoing costs other than the monthly bill I pay to the solar contractor (like maintenance costs)?
  7. What if I lease the system and I move?
  8. How long does it take to install a system?
  9. What is the process?
  10. Who is responsible for repairing the roof if it's damaged during installation?
  11. Is there a warranty on the panels?
  12. What happens if I need to work on my roof? Who is responsible for replacing the solar panel system then?
  13. How long will the solar panels work?
  14. Who owns the system at the end of a lease?
  15. Is the system removed at the end of the lease or is there a buyout?
  16. What happens if I sell my house?
  17. Who gets the tax credits?
  18. Who gets the rebates?
  19. What does this mean for my homeowners insurance?
  20. What happens if you go out of business?