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Install Your Own Solar Panels
Cover of Install Your Own Solar Panels
Install Your Own Solar Panels
Designing and Installing a Photovoltaic System to Power Your Home
Borrow Borrow Borrow

Labor and related costs account for more than half of the price of the average home solar installation. But homeowners can save thousands of dollars with this user-friendly manual, which follows the same process professional contractors use. Through detailed directions and step-by-step photos, veteran solar installer Joe Burdick and seasoned builder Philip Schmidt teach you how to determine the size, placement, and type of installation you'll need. This comprehensive DIY guide covers everything from assembling rooftop racking or building a ground-mount structure to setting up the electrical connections and making a battery bank for off-grid systems.

Labor and related costs account for more than half of the price of the average home solar installation. But homeowners can save thousands of dollars with this user-friendly manual, which follows the same process professional contractors use. Through detailed directions and step-by-step photos, veteran solar installer Joe Burdick and seasoned builder Philip Schmidt teach you how to determine the size, placement, and type of installation you'll need. This comprehensive DIY guide covers everything from assembling rooftop racking or building a ground-mount structure to setting up the electrical connections and making a battery bank for off-grid systems.

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About the Author-
  • Joe Burdick has more than 30 years of experience in the photovoltaics industry — from R&D, measurement, and testing to system design, installation, and project management. He is president and CEO of Burdick Technologies Unlimited, LLC, one of Colorado's top renewable energy companies, and is also a professor at Ecotech Institute, where he trains students for careers in solar installation.

Table of Contents-
  • Introduction
    1 The Basics
    Anatomy of a Solar-Electric System
    Can I Install My Own PV System?
    Going Solar – From Start to Finish
    Working with Solar Professionals
    Answering the Big Three
    2 Assessing Your Site
    Measuring Area, Slope, and Azimuth
    Sizing Your System with PVWatts
    Snow, Wind, and Shade
    3 Choosing PV Hardware
    Modules
    Module Support Structures
    Inverters and DC Optimizers
    4 Designing Your System
    PV Circuit Fundamentals
    The Design Process
    Sample System Designs
    One-Line Electrical Diagrams
    Wire Types for PV Systems
    5 Getting Ready to Install
    Permitting and Inspections
    Shopping Solar
    Solar Financials
    Assembling Your Crew
    6 Mechanical Installation: Rooftop
    Laying Out the Racking
    Installing Footers and Rails
    Installing Modules
    7 Mechanical Installation: Ground-Mount
    Setting the Support Posts
    Assembling the Ground-Mount Structure
    8 Electrical Installation
    Final Project Steps
    Running Conduit
    Component Connections
    Final Inspection and Turning On Your PV System
    9 Off-Grid System Design
    Off-Grid Basics
    Batteries
    Sample Off-Grid System Design
    10 Beyond Installation: Tips for Troubleshooting, Maintaining, and Monitoring Your PV System
    PV Safety Rules
    Shutdown and Startup Procedures
    Maintenance and Troubleshooting
    Monitoring Your System
    Acknowledgments
    Glossary
    Metric Conversions
    Index

Reviews-
  • Library Journal

    July 1, 2017

    Burdick, president of a renewable energy company, and Schmidt, an experienced author (PlyDesign) and carpenter, carefully outline practical considerations and basics of home solar systems. Rather than trying to convince readers of the benefits of solar, this book assumes they are already onboard and just need help to make it happen. It sets itself apart from other recent titles on solar by focusing on the basics of installation, a topic severely lacking in the field. Be it a roof installation or ground-mounted design, this book focuses on what a confident do-it-yourselfer can do, and what should be left to the professionals. Great instruction and tips are included. For a more general approach, Paul Scheckel's The Homeowner's Energy Handbook covers an array of alternative energy resources. VERDICT An important manual on home solar systems, offering solid advice and instruction.

    Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Storey Publishing, LLC
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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Install Your Own Solar Panels
Install Your Own Solar Panels
Designing and Installing a Photovoltaic System to Power Your Home
Joseph Burdick
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