Solar panel installation: Assembling the puzzle pieces of solar energy

2021.08.17

Signature Electric owner, Mark Marmer, reveals what’s happening beneath the surface of a solar panel installation

 
A solar power grid is an attractive piece of technology. From above, it looks like a neatly organized series of shiny panels, angled in unison for the maximum amount of sunlight. But how are those panels, the electrical connections, and the power utility tied together to transform sunlight into usable electricity for the people inside?

This video is an eye-opening peek inside the strategy and infrastructure required to build a solar panel grid. Signature Electric owner, Mark Marmer, walks us through a recent installation in a newly-constructed Toronto building complex.

Starting from the roof, Mark explains the mechanics behind how panels are mounted on a roof and the challenge of running cables from the top of a building to the electrical room in the basement. How much difference is there between installing panels on a 4-story versus a 24-story building? Plenty. All of this is considered before Signature Electric gets to work. As Mark says, “We don’t want the benefit of making your own electricity to be outweighed by the cost of the installation itself”.

Mark then takes us inside the building, explaining each step and the decision behind it. How are rooftop panels tied to the main electrical box? From the inverter, to the cables, to the breakers, to the transformer, to the disconnect, there are many pieces to the installation puzzle, and essential protocols that must be followed.

Especially interesting is the overview of the flow of power. Mark shows us how solar panels route electricity in the opposite direction from traditional hydro-generated energy. Unlike hydro, where power originates from the grid and ultimately reaches the building, solar energy originates in the panels and ultimately flows back to the grid.

This electrical journey is both fascinating to watch and educational, plus we’re getting an insider’s view from one of Canada’s industry leaders. Enjoy!
 

Watch the video

 
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