10 Years Post Sandy- Is Your Home Storm Ready?
Nov 04, 2022
by Tara McDermott
It’s hard to believe that ten years ago, Long Island and New York City were hit with vicious winds and waves of Hurricane Sandy. Our region was one of the hardest hit, and many of our neighbors are still struggling to rebuild.
EmPower Solar was among the thousands of homes and businesses that were damaged. Our COO, Greg Sachs, stayed at our Island Park office the night the storm hit, barricading doors and protecting our space. Ultimately, the offices experienced significant damage and EmPower Solar lost five out of six work trucks.
Undeterred by the catastrophe, we resolved to help our neighbors build back better and increase their energy resiliency. Adding a solar + battery backup system is one of the best ways to ensure that your home remains powered no matter what.
Building Energy Independence with Solar
Hurricane Sandy took out power lines all across Long Island, leaving homes and businesses without power for days. When you install solar panels on your home, you become less reliant on traditional energy sources. Solar panels absorb the sun’s energies, and a microinverter converts it into Alternate Current energy that is used to power your home. Solar panels work year round, allowing you to harness the sun’s rays through all four seasons.
It’s important to note that while solar panels will make your home less reliant on the electrical grid, alone they will not maintain power during an outage.
When the power goes out in your home, your solar panels will automatically disconnect from the grid to maintain the safety of the utility workers attempting to restore power. Once restored, your system will continue production after a few minutes.
Solar and Backup Batteries: Home Energy Resilience
Become truly resilient when you pair your home solar system with a backup battery, like the Tesla Powerwall. When the power grid fails, the Tesla Powerwall will detect this and disconnect automatically. Your home will then begin to use energy from the Powerwall. This allows your home to maintain uninterrupted power without worrying about refueling. Energy will be replenished during daylight hours, so you can ensure complete emergency preparedness during blackouts.
Installing a Powerwall may also affect how large your solar system will need to be. It’s important to discuss this during the planning process to make sure your system is being sized appropriately. If you decide not to install a Powerwall initially, you can also add more panels to your system later on.
One Powerwall can provide 13.5 kWh per charge and can power large appliances for short periods of time. You can actively monitor your Powerwalls performance through the Tesla app in real time. Because the Powerwalls storage can be replenished during the day, with active monitoring, your Powerwall can keep your essential appliances powered for a week or more.
Compared to traditional gas generators, home solar and battery backup systems offer the most cost reliable solution to maintaining home electricity during power outages like those seen during Hurricane Sandy. Many homeowners choose to install multiple Powerwalls to ensure maximum comfort and value.
The Powerwalls are extremely quiet, and can be installed indoors in a garage or basement or outside.
Incentives and Savings
For $0 down, you can see savings on your electricity bill from day one when installing a home solar and battery backup system. Net metering is a process during which excess energy your solar system creates is sent back to the grid. This is credited to your account for times when your system is not producing as much or any energy, like at night or on cloudy days. Through net metering, many homeowners see their energy bill reduced to $20, the required grid connection fee.
There are also a number of incentives and rebates available for solar plus storage. After installing solar panels on your home, you will receive a 30 % federal tax rebate and a $5,000 credit from New York State. There is another storage rebate specifically for PSEGLI customers who install backup battery systems, like the Tesla Powerwall. Through NYSERDA, you can receive up to $6,250, or $250 per kWh.
Your Next Steps
EmPower Solar is proud to install Tesla Powerwalls for new and existing clients. If you’re a current client, feel free to reach out to our Customer Success team to get started. New to solar? Schedule a free consultation to see if your home is right for solar + battery backup.