WHY CHOOSE BLUE DOT?

In a Word, Value.

FROM START TO FINISH, THE REASONS TO CHOOSE BLUE DOT ENERGY ARE GOLDEN.

 

  1. You will be treated just as we would want to be treated if the roles were reversed.

  2. You will not have to worry about hype, spin or being misled.

  3. You can rest assured that you're dealing with a qualified company that is licensed and insured with staff that has 13 years of experience providing turn-key solar solutions.

  4. From the solar products we design into your system to installing them at your home or business, quality is paramount.

  5. We're more interested in the golden goose - as in you, your satisfaction, reviews, & referrals - than we are in a golden egg, i.e. selling a project at an exorbitant price.

AN IN-DEPTH LOOK AT GOING SOLAR WITH BLUE DOT ENERGY SOLUTIONS

We know that you do not take investing your time, money and effort into going solar lightly, neither do we. When we help someone consider the pros and cons of powering their home or business with solar energy, we apply the Golden Rule from concept to completion.

WE ARE LOCAL, RELIABLE, AND ALL ABOUT CREATING WIN / WIN RELATIONSHIPS

Blue Dot Energy Solutions is licensed, insured and has experienced staff (13+ yrs.) with North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) credentials. We also have references and reviews that you can view online, on our website or in-person.

ELECTRICAL USAGE ASSESSMENT:

We Establish a Baseline (the intel gathered is this step is useful if battery storage is being considered as well) 

Before beginning the solar design process we establish your building's energy usage and consider potential efficiency upgrades. If applicable, we'll advise you on cost-effective and easy-to-implement energy efficiency upgrades options. 

  • Energy Usage Evaluation:
    Check for air leaks, adequate insulation, review heating and cooling equipment. 

  • Appliances and Electronics:
    Determine the age, efficiency and use frequency of your appliances and electronics. Make recommendations regarding product efficiency upgrades if applicable.

  • Lighting:
    Evaluate lighting efficiency, such as LED light bulbs.

  • Heating and Cooling:
    Using electricity to heat and cool your home significantly impacts the amount of solar energy you will require. A weather-tight home and an efficient heating and cooling system will significantly reduce the amount of electricity you need to produce via solar.

 

We Assess Your Solar Potential

  • We determine the amount of solar energy that can be produced at your location. The amount of power generated by a solar electric system at a given location depends on the amount of solar insolation that is being realized, shading factors, orientation, tilt, and of course, the size of the system. 

  • We utilize mapping software and  solar design tools to determine your home’s solar energy needs and potential. These tools provide historical data relating to weather patterns and the amount of solar energy reaching a given area - which is essential intel when estimating system size, potential costs and savings. Said tools are the first step and are instrumental in determining if your home is suitable for solar. We provide an overall assessment of your building’s solar potential, along with detailed recommendations, cost factors, and equipment selection.

 

We Estimate Your Electricity Needs

To provide you with accurate recommendations regarding system size, type and location, we gather information about your home and your electricity consumption habits.

  • We Look Back: We examine past electricity bills to establish annual electricity consumption. Electrical usage is expressed on your Utility bills in the form of kilowatt-hours (kWh). Understanding the ebb and flow of your electricity usage from one month to the next (e.g. if you run a pool pump or air conditioner in the summer) helps us to model how much power is needed via solar annually.

  • We Look Ahead: We factor in potential increases in energy consumption in the future. For example; the expansion of your home, additional occupants, a new pool, pool pump and possibly pool heater, a new electric car, or two, etc. We also factor in gains in energy efficiency via equipment upgrades whereas added efficiencies will reduce the size of the solar array needed to offset your electric load.

Incentives and Financing Options

Qualified residential and commercial solar energy systems are eligible for a 26% federal tax credit through 2022. In 2023 it drops to 22%.This federal tax credit expires at the end of 2023 for residential systems. Unless, congress decides to extend it.

 

In addition to reviewing all available cost incentives, if applicable, we will assist you with financing options. One size does not fit all, what is best for your household depends on a number of factors. But experientially, think financing a car, except, imagine walking away from the dealership with a clear understanding of terms and conditions, benefits and features, and a strong feeling that what you entered into was a win/ win transaction! Also you can visit the Homeowner’s Guide to Going Solar for more financing options.

 

We Work with Your Utility Co.

If you elect to install a solar energy system, your installer should be able to guide you in completing the necessary permit and interconnection applications. It’s worth asking if the installer has experience with this step, as it is an important one.

 

 

 

 

 

Solar Installer Considerations: 

The Solar Company you select should ensure that all equipment is installed per electrical and structural specifications and that the system location and orientation is optimized based on site parameters. When considering a solar installer, consider the following: (By the way, Blue Dot checks all of the boxes)

  • Is the company familiar with local permitting and interconnection processes? Acquiring building permits and utility interconnect can be a process.  Make sure the installer you select is familiar with the local and regional procedures. It will save you time and aggravation.

  • Can the company provide references from other customers in your area? 

  • Is the company have proper licensing? Installing a solar energy system is not a DIY project. Either the installer or a subcontractor must has an electrical contractor's license. You can check with the Florida electrical board to see if a contractor has a valid electrician's license

  • What is the warranty for this system like? Quality solar equipment is always backed with an industry standard warranty (typically 20 years for solar panels and 10 years for solar inverters). The mounting system warranty should be considered as well. A robust warranty is a good indicator that quality equipment is being used by the installer. Blue Dot provides industry leading 25 year product, performance and labor warranties on select solar modules.

  • Does the company have any pending or active judgments or liens against it? The Florida state electrical board is also a good source to learn about any judgments or customer complaints.

  • Proposals should state the maximum that a system is capable of generating—measured in Watts (W) or kilowatts (kW). An installer should also estimate of the amount of energy the proposed system will produce on an annual and monthly basis (in kilowatt-hours). This number is a good indicator of what percent of your electric usage (refer to the yearly total on your electric bill) will be offset with solar annually.

  • Solar quotes should also include a turnkey price for getting your solar energy system fully commissioned i.e. operating as designed. The turnkey price should be inclusive of hardware, labor, grid interconnection, permitting, applicable taxes, and warranties.

 

Also, it’s important that you understand how your post-solar utility bill works - as in it will take 2-3 months for you to see the solar savings reflected in your electric bill. It’s a good idea to check on your utility company’s website to understand their policies and procedures, incentive and or fees.

Image by Nuno Marques

SOLAR ACQUISITION CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Method of Payment:
    Whether you finance your system or not can make a difference in the net project price as some solar installers offer "cash" payment discounts. 

  • Affordability: 
    When financing a solar electric system often the goal is have the solar loan payment be equal to or less than the amount one is paying for electricity on an average monthly basis. With the goal of having "cost-free" electricity when the loan is paid off. In some scenarios a monthly solar loan payment is higher than the average monthly electric bill. This short-term financial setback should be negated by a long-term financial gains. In this scenario one should be comfortable with the total monthly cost. If one is self-funding a solar project it is fairly safe to assume affordability is not an issue. The system owner will benefit from a reduction is electricity charges from their current utility (assuming one exists). 

  • Credit Scores:
    If financing is to be utilized it's advantageous to know your credit score before staring the solar process. A score of 660 or higher is beneficial. There are various financing programs. As one might expect, the better the credit score, the better the loan terms, usually. There are also programs like PACE where credit is not the primary factor but rather the amount of  equity. (PACE financing is available in Florida, but not in all  counties)

  • Placement of Solar Array(s): 
    As a rule, it is not practical or advisable to put solar equipment that’s going to last 25 years +- on a roof that will need to be replaced in the near future. The actual age of a roof is not the sole factor in determining roof viability. The quality and type of roofing materials used, and the current condition of the existing roof also plays in how much longer a roof will last. A roof is not always the best location to install solar. Other options include solar pergolas, carports, awnings, pole or ground-mounted systems. The best option is ascertained with the input of all concerned.

  • Shading Factors:
    Shading from nearby trees and adjacent structures is an important consideration. The amount of shade the objects / trees cast today, and how much they will cast in the future e.g. trees growing taller. If property is heavily shaded and removing the offending obstacles (trees / structures) is not an option, solar may not be right for you.  

  • Homeowner Associations (HOA): 
    Authorities having jurisdiction where restrictions can exist and / or approvals are required. A number of states (including Florida) have "solar rights provisions" limiting the extent to which HOAs can control solar installations or access to solar. Regulatory requirements can vary from state to state, as well as by utility and municipality. It is imperative to ascertain which, if any covenants and / or state regulations apply from the get-go.

  • Backup Battery Storage: 
    Grid redundancy may be part of the equation. (This scenario is best addressed by way of a preliminary needs analysis )