Tucson Electric Power’s new Solar Analysis tool helps you evaluate your options by providing a simple way to estimate your potential costs and benefits.
Customers have several choices when deciding to go solar: buying or leasing a private rooftop system, or signing up for TEP’s GoSolar Home or GoSolar Shares program. Choosing among them can be difficult, particularly when providers are promising future savings through long-term contracts.
TEP’s powerful new Solar Analysis tool helps residential customers evaluate all of their solar options – whether they rent or own – so that they can make an informed decision. The tool uses customers’ previous 12 months of energy usage, satellite imagery and other inputs to provide the analysis.
“This tool helps customers objectively evaluate their solar options before they invest in rooftop solar or enroll in one of TEP’s solar programs,” said Ted Burhans, Director of Emerging Technology & Innovations.
“Customers can experiment with different options so that they can determine what system makes the most sense for them economically and meets their renewable energy goals,” he said.
The tool can be accessed from My Account. Customers who don’t have My Account can still use the tool by entering their account number and information.
Customers interested in buying or leasing a rooftop system can use the tool to estimate:
- upfront and long-terms costs for financing, leasing, maintenance and repair
- the size of the system that’s right for their needs
- payback periods for various options
- whether a TEP solar program is right for them
Customers also can analyze different system sizes and configurations – such as the number of solar panels and their orientation and tilt. Adjusting these specifications will affect estimated solar production levels and energy costs.
Another powerful feature lets customers review and change key assumptions, including interest rates and projected electric rate increases. Solar installers must estimate how much electric rates will increase over the next 10-20 years to calculate projected savings from a rooftop system. TEP’s rates have risen at an average annual rate of about 1 percent over the last two decades, so our tool uses that level by default.
“The detailed information from the analysis can be especially helpful to customers who have obtained estimates from rooftop installers,” said Burhans. “They can compare our analysis with those estimates to see if system size, estimated savings and other results are comparable.”
The tool helps customers compare private solar to TEP’s solar programs, which are open to renters and others who can’t install a rooftop system.
TEP GoSolar Home offers a fixed monthly price based on your previous 12 months of service and won’t change for 10 years. Participants also are exempt from rate changes and certain surcharges if their annual usage remains about the same.
TEP GoSolar Shares is an easy, flexible way for anyone to go solar. Customers can buy 150-kilowatt-hour “shares” of solar energy to satisfy some or all of their energy needs and they can cancel at any time. This is a good option for renters, limited-income residents or those with shaded rooftops.