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Enphase IQ8 Commercial Microinverter Beta Program

In Installation Photos, News Leave a Comment

We were selected to participate in the Enphase Energy IQ8 Commercial Microinverter beta program. Only a handful of contractors nationwide participated in this important Beta test to allow Enphase to gather data on the installation process and microinverter performance. We were luck enough to be under contract with the Conservancy of Southwest Florida to install solar panels on our fourth …

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Five Star Solar Installer in Southwest Florida

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We are delighted to have surpassed 250 five star Google Reviews as of September 2023. New clients are often quite impressed with this, but our existing clients are not surprised. Why? How did we do it? We ask ourselves that frequently because we are obviously on the right track, and we want to continue doing what we are doing right. …

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Should I Mount My Solar Panels Landscape or Portrait Orientation

In Education, Solar Design, Uncategorized Leave a Comment

You might notice that some solar panels are mounted in landscape (horizontal) and some are mounted in portrait (vertical). Why is that, and how should you mount yours? The answer might surprise you, and it’s actually quite important. We see a lot of contractors mounting solar panels in landscape orientation because rectangular panels just fit better on a triangular or …

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Solar Pool Heating Alternative

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Solar pool heating can be a great way to heat your pool, but there is an alternative. I once heard the phrase that pool heating is one letter away from pool hating. Heating a pool can be expensive, so deciding the best way to do it is an important decision you need to make to ensure that you enjoy using …

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Photorealistic Solar Panel Layouts | Solar Panels Superimposed on Imagery

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For mission-critical solar energy projects, when visualizing the outcome is critical, we have you covered. We have the in-house capability to take aerial imagery with drones and superimpose photorealistic solar panels on the imagery. We can even do this with motion video. What can’t we do?!  For those of you that don’t know, our solar contractor is an avid commercial …

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Enphase IQ7 Versus IQ8 Microinverters

In Education, Opinion 2 Comments

UPDATE 2/16/24: Enphase is discontinuing the IQ7 series of microinverters, so much of this article is a moot point, but there is still a ton of valuable information here. We are keeping it here for you for historical reference.   The IQ8 series of microinverter has been out for a while now, and it has proven to be another great …

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What Battery Mode Is Right For Me?

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Most solar panel with battery backup systems have options for how to use your batteries. There is often confusion around this because some of the modes of operation sound great. However, in most cases, there is no benefit to Southwest Florida residents to use anything but “Full Backup” mode. Battery and inverter system manufacturers call the various modes by different …

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Pentair Variable Speed Pump Over Current Alarm

In Education, Service 2 Comments

If you have a Pentair variable speed pump and receive an Over Current Alarm, this can be caused be a variety of issues. Sometimes this is accompanied with an error number F90059. Here are some reasons this might have occurred: Your pump impeller is clogged with debris. Your pool service professional will need to determine if this is the case. …

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Enphase 5P Battery Released

In Education, News, Solar Design Leave a Comment

As part of the Enphase IQ family of products, the company has released its Enphase IQ Battery 5P. This battery offers some improvements for select clients in Southwest Florida, all at a similar price to the existing 3T and 10T batteries (for equal storage capacity). The Enphase 5P battery has just half of the battery capacity of the existing 10 and …

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Enphase Encharge Battery Backup System

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We are the local leader in solar energy systems installed with Enphase microinverters. You can add battery backup to your grid-interactive solar panel system to provide seamless power to your home. We can provide solutions that backup only critical loads or your whole home including air conditioning! Watch our promotional video below to see the components of an Enphase Encharge …

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Who Makes Tier 1 Solar Panels

In Education, Opinion Leave a Comment

Everyone is getting in on the ChatGPT craze. If you don’t know what this is, it’s an artificial intelligence chatbot developed by OpenAI. It is expected to yield huge changes in the way we search and learn online. Students are even cheating by writing papers using this tool. It can produce human-like responses with great information, but the problem is, …

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NABCEP Certified PVIP Photovoltaic Installation Professional In Southwest Florida

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People engaged in skilled trades seek certifications to show the public that they are vetted as competent persons in their craft. For example, air conditioning has NATE, auto mechanics have ASE, and electricians can become Journeyman. In the solar energy industry, NABCEP is the de facto standard for certifications. But they offer a wide array of certifications and it’s important …

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How Enphase Lifetime Free Solar Monitoring Works

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Enphase provides world-class solar monitoring and unparalleled customer support. When you purchase an Enphase microinverter based solar electric system from Florida Solar Design Group, you will automatically get access to Enphase’s Enlighten solar monitoring platform and app. We will install a data monitoring gateway that connects to your home Wi-Fi network and sends performance data to the Enphase Cloud where …

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What Wind Speed Can My Solar Panels Handle?

In Opinion Leave a Comment

Given the prevalence of hurricanes in Southwest Florida, people naturally want to know what kind of wind speeds solar panels can handle. Unfortunately, that’s a loaded question with no real, direct answer. Nobody “knows” for sure, but we have lots of anecdotal data. There are way too many variables to provide a succinct answer. And, there are no guarantees. The …

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Enphase Energy Independence in Enlighten App

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We love Enphase around here, but sometimes they really don’t think things through and cause solar contractors a lot of unnecessary grief. You would not believe how many calls/emails/texts we get about the “Energy Independence” figure shown in the Enphase Enlighten app. An average person might think this figure indicates how much of your energy is being produced by solar …

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Utility Interconnection Tiers Explained

In Education 2 Comments

The Florida Administrative Code is where we find the Net Metering Rule for Florida. Utility companies are bound by this law, and each has an interconnection agreement form that is approved by the Public Service Commission. FPL and LCEC are the two utility companies in our service territory. Both have interconnection Tiers 1, 2, and 3. Tier 3 is only …