Solar Energy Systems: How They Work. If you want a more environmentally friendly home, one step is to install a solar energy system. After all, the sun’s energy has been shining down on us in Orange County for thousands of years. White Mechanical, Inc. carries the Lennox® SunSource® Energy System to help you create a greener, less oil- and gas-dependent home. But how does this system work? The system uses solar modules, made up of photovoltaic (PV) cells, to collect energy from the sun and convert it to electricity. Afterwards, the electricity will power appliances, lights and other electrical devices in your home – from your HVAC systems to your TV. Grid-tied PV systems If you’re in Rancho Santa Margarita, you’re likely going to want a grid-tied PV system. These are the least costly solar energy systems, and they’re connected to your utility company’s power grid – hence the name grid-tied. This lets you use solar energy from your system when the PVs are collecting energy and use electricity from the grid at times when the system isn’t gathering energy. Additionally, grid-tied systems let your system feed additional energy back into the grid, at which time your meter will spin backwards. This is the process of net-metering. The backward spin helps you save on utility expenses that are determined by how far forward your meter has spun. Please note that most solar rebates and incentives are only available if your system is grid-tied. The second option is a stand-alone PV system, which is more expensive. Stand-alone systems are not connected to the utility grid and are nice options when your home is in a remote location, not near a utility service or power lines. White Mechanical, Inc. in Rancho Santa Margarita is happy to help with your solar energy system questions. Give us a buzz at 949-284-6382 or schedule an appointment online.