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Valley Solar Blog

Valley Solar Pioneers The Latest Energy Efficient Technology

As featured in the Daily Hampshire Gazette, May 8, 2024 By Michael Reardon | for Home Magazine Valley Solar co-owners Mike Hempstead and Patrick Rondeau have embraced the future of renewable energy and established the company as a leader in the area of battery storage. These days more than half of Valley Solar’s customers have battery storage systems installed along with solar power. Like a…

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Massachusetts Net Metering is the Gold Standard. But will it last?

At the state level, energy policy has been formulated to incentivize homeowners to install rooftop solar. Many states have implemented some version of “net metering”, which refers to the system owner’s ability to “sell back” excess production to the grid, in exchange for credits which can be used to offset future electric bills. Massachusetts currently has perhaps the best version of net metering currently available. …

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The Smart Energy Solution: Tesla Powerwall Installation For Residential Use

  A smart energy solution is one that utilizes self-learning technology or the Internet of Things (IoT) to manage energy usage in a more efficient and sustainable way, including Tesla Powerwall installation. This can include things like solar energy systems integrated with Tesla Powerwall for efficient energy storage, which are able to report incentive credits and provide remote service alerts. Additionally, appliances can “learn” your…

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How Solar Storage Batteries Can Lessen the Duck Curve

With more solar storage batteries in every home, we can lessen the infamous duck curve, save people money, and do our part to create a more sustainable future. Haven’t heard of the duck curve? Let us shed some light. The impact of solar on the electrical grid We know that solar energy is better for the planet and our wallets, but we don’t often talk…

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Why 2022 May be the Last, Best Year to Go Solar

As it stands, after 2022 the 26% Federal Solar Tax Credit will be reduced by 18% before it is ended entirely by 2024.  Valley Solar is hoping, just like you, that Congress will pass legislation to extend the tax credit in some form. We just don’t know if it is going to happen.  As things stand, if you don’t have a system installed and operational before…

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Valley Solar Donates $10,500 to Wonderfund Ma

Partnering with Wonderfund, a Massachusetts non-profit that supports children involved with the Department of Children and Families (DCF), Valley Solar donated $10,500 to support the Wonderfund’s annual Holiday Drive for the 2021 Holiday season. On the company’s decision to give back, Mike Hempstead, Valley Solar co-owner and President, said, “The Valley Solar team is pleased to have supported the Wonderfund’s Holiday Drive to help ensure that…

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The Federal Solar Tax Credit Ends Soon

One of the biggest mental hurdles towards choosing to go solar is the perceived investment cost. However, incentives such as the Federal Solar Tax Credit can take thousands of dollars off that investment and make solar a savings rather than a cost.    So why should you invest in solar now? Because 2022 is the final year of the 26% Federal Tax Credit. If you don’t…

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Consider a power system based on stored renewable energy

As published in The Daily Hampshire Gazette March 24, 2021 By Mike Hempstead The February power grid failure in Texas caused 4.6 million customers to lose power, cost an estimated $195 billion in property damage, and took the lives some 70 people, including that of an 11-year-old boy who froze to death in his bed. As tragic as this toll is, we now know Texas…

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Does a Solar Energy System Work When the Sun Isn’t Shining?

We live in New England. Cloudy days, thunderstorms and snow are all par for the course. So, when looking into solar energy you’ve likely asked yourself a common question:  will my solar energy system work when the sun is not out? The answer is yes, it will, as long as you install a battery backup system together with your solar panels. WHAT IS A BATTERY…

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Extreme Weather is Making the Power Grid Less Reliable

Our access to food, water, heat and lighting depends on our access to electricity. Therefore, as extreme weather events become more frequent and intense, power outages increase in duration and frequency as well and our access to these living essentials are inhibited. According to the Eaton Blackout Tracker, between 2012 and 2016 alone there was a 45% increase in summer outages due to extreme weather…

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Understanding National Electric Rates and Pricing

Electric rates vary depending on a number of factors, including geographic location, industry trends and market changes, as well as time of year. While rates vary, one thing is certain: the average American spends hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year on electricity. One study found that between five and 22 percent of a family’s after-tax income is spent on paying energy bills in the United States. On…

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Cannabis Farming and Electric Rates

As more states legalize the use of cannabis for recreational and/or medicinal purposes, it is important to recognize the impact these technological and economic changes have on electric rates. In Massachusetts and across the country, energy consumption has spiked as a byproduct of advancements to cultivate marijuana. While cannabis farming has inarguably revolutionized modern society, it nonetheless has increased the demand for electricity varying per…

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Electric Cars and Bitcoin Mining Energy Consumption

In Governor Charlie Baker’s 2022 Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2050, Massachusetts banned the sale of new gas powered vehicles starting in 2035. This effort will be made in an attempt to reduce the state’s carbon emissions by 45%, paving the way for the target net-zero emissions by 2050. According to Morgan Folger, director of Zero Carbon Campaign at Environment America, transportation is one…

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Leasing vs Buying a Solar Energy System

If you are looking for ways to reduce your energy bill or to become less dependent upon the grid, you are probably researching solar energy systems and the costs associated. There are several different payment options for you to choose between: Lease: Renting a solar system from a third party: Solar leasing is when a leasing company installs a solar system with no upfront cost for…

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Are Increasing Cyber-Attacks Leaving You Vulnerable?

Cyber-attacks are not as uncommon as most people may think. The fact is that cyber-attacks happen daily, and large cyber-attacks are very real threats that deserve to have more attention focused on how to eliminate the threats, or at the very least how to decrease the impact. Just this month there was a large cyberattack that forced the temporary shut down on a major pipeline…

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Choosing a technology for home energy system with storage: DC coupled vs AC coupled

What exactly is AC and DC coupling? These are ways that solar panels are coupled or linked to a battery system or energy storage. The connection between the solar panels and the energy storage system can use either alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC)—two types of voltage which transmit and conduct electricity. AC is when the electricity flows back and forth rapidly in both…

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Be Empowered By a Solar Battery

Summer is quickly approaching and with it also comes hurricane season. Taking a proactive approach and getting prepared ahead of time ensures that you and your family are ready for whatever comes your way. In the past, preparing for storms meant gathering gallons of bottled water, flashlights, batteries, and candles just to name a few. These are still considered important to have on hand, but…

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