Serving Spokane, Eastern & Central Washington, and Northern Idaho

Frequently Asked Questions

More Questions? Call (509) 732-9255!

  • Solar

    • How Long Does it Take to Install Solar?
      For residential rooftop or ground array, installation usually takes between two and five days depending on system size and complexity.
    • Do I Need to Get Any Permits or Engineering Done?
      No. Our team does all the permitting paperwork and the engineering for structures that require them.
    • How Long Do Solar Components Last?
      Solar electric panels produce power for 30-50 years, and manufacturers usually warranty the power output for 25 years. The inverter typically wears out first, and most are warrantied for 10-25 years.
    • Should I Replace My Roof Before Installing Solar?
      Because solar panels often outlast roofing shingles, your roof should be in good condition before you install a solar panel system. If your roof has less than 12 years of remaining life, we recommend replacing your roof before installing solar.
    • Does Solar Boost Home Value?
      Studies show that solar systems do indeed increase home value, often by an amount similar to the cost of the system. Although there are no guarantees, a solar system can pay for itself in resale value alone, and you could consider the electricity it produces as a bonus!
    • Can My HOA Prevent Me From Putting Up Solar Panels?

      State law in Washington prevents homeowner associations from outright prohibiting the installation of solar PV systems if the system meets all health, safety, and performance standards required by state and local permitting authorities. The HOA may have its own rules on where the system is located on the property, and on the physical appearance of the system.

      In Idaho, however, homeowner associations can prevent you from putting up solar, so you should ask permission. You should also ask for a solar easement to ensure permission isn’t taken away, and that your solar access isn’t obstructed.

    • What About Snow?
      Solar panels work well and often more efficiently in cold weather. While it is true that they do not work if there is snow on top of them, the snow usually slides off or melts quickly — all you will likely need to do is clean off your panels with a broom and/or add snow guards to your solar panel installation.
    • Is the Inland Northwest a Good Place for Solar?
      Our region’s long summer days were made for solar. Thanks to all the summer sunlight we get and the credits earned through utility net metering programs, we can build energy credits in the long summer months and then use those credits in the shorter winter months. Solar panels also operate more efficiently in our cooler summer weather, which means more efficient power than hotter climates like the Southwest. Solar energy systems keep on working on cloudy days too, collecting scattered light and focusing it into energy.
    • What is Net Metering?


      Net metering is an agreement between you and your utility where you are allowed bank credits whenever your system is producing more energy than your home is using.

      Typically, this occurs in the sunny summer months when your system is most productive. In the winter, you can draw from those credits, keeping your bills low.

      There is a net metering fiscal year, which runs from April to March. On March 31st, you will forfeit any credits you may have with the utility. The year resets on April 1st, coinciding with the long summer days when you can again start building up credits.

    • What Financial Incentives are Available for Installing Solar?
      • FEDERAL: Homeowners can get a Federal Income Tax Credit of 30% of the total cost of an Installed system.
      • WASHINGTON: Washington provides a sales tax exemption for solar energy systems, such as rooftop solar panels. The exemption is available through 2029 and can exempt sales taxes for the purchase of machinery, equipment, and installation of solar energy systems.
      • IDAHO: Idaho offers a Residential Alternative Tax Deduction that allows you to deduct 40% of the cost of your solar panel equipment and installation from your personal income taxes. You can also deduct 20% of the cost each year for the following three years after installation. The deduction is maxed out at $5,000 per year, or $20,000 total.
  • Generators

    • Does Installation Include the Fuel Source?
      No. We refer our customers to trusted local partners if you need to have a liquid propane tank installed or need to run natural gas line to the location of the generator.
    • How Do I Correctly Size a Generator for My Home?
      The most logical way to determine your needs is to envision your home without power. Some outages may be short in duration, while others could last for days or weeks. What would your family miss during an outage? We can help you calculate the size needed based on the loads you would like to power during an outage.
      • Essential Circuit Coverage – The generator is paired with a transfer switch containing a predetermined number of circuits based on the generator’s kW power rating. Each circuit is directly connected to a matched circuit on the home’s main circuit breaker panel, providing electricity to that specific appliance or area of the home.
      • Managed Whole House Coverage – This is a managed power solution where non-essential circuits are shed when the generator approaches maximum capacity. They are cycled back on when essential circuits no longer require power, so all circuits receive power at different times.
      • Complete Whole House Coverage – Easily cover every circuit in your home by pairing a larger kW unit and the proper transfer switch to provide full coverage. No circuit is ever left uncovered, so every appliance is available every minute.
    • What Brand of Generators Do You Install?
      Generac
    • Why Should I Buy an Automatic Backup Generator Instead of a Portable Generator?
      During a utility power outage, an automatic backup generator provides numerous advantages over a portable generator:
      • The American Red Cross recommends permanently installed backup generators as a safer way to provide backup power to a home than a portable generator.
      • With an automatic backup generator properly installed outside, your home is protected from deadly carbon monoxide poisoning, which is a much greater risk with portable generators.
      • Running on the home’s natural gas or LP fuel supply, it is less expensive to run than gasoline and sources such as natural gas do not need to be refilled.
      • They start automatically within seconds of a power outage and eliminate the need to haul a portable generator outside or run extension cords throughout your home.
      • They provide protection 24/7, whether you’re home or away, and they turn themselves off when utility power returns, so there is no need to monitor the unit during an outage.
    • What Is An Automatic Backup Generator?
      An automatic backup generator is a backup electrical system that operates whether you are home or away. Within seconds of an outage, it automatically supplies power directly to your home’s electrical circuit breaker box. After utility power returns, the generator shuts itself off and waits for the next outage. It operates on natural gas or liquid propane gas and sits outside just like a central air conditioning unit.
  • Electrical Vehicle Charging

    • What Types of EV Chargers Are Available?
      • Level 1 is charging at home with a 120-volt circuit (i.e., using a standard electrical outlet). This normally provides 3-5 miles of charging per hour.
      • Level 2 is charging with a 240-volt circuit in the home or workplace. This requires professional installation of either a NEMA 14-50 outlet or a hardwired charging station, and can usually refill your EV battery overnight.
  • Ductless Heat Pumps Mini-Splits

    • What About My Old Heater?
      In remodels or retrofits, rather than paying to remove your existing heating system consider keeping it to supplement ductless units in extreme weather conditions.
    • How Efficient Are Ductless Systems?
      State-of-the-art ductless heating and cooling is the most efficient way to provide space conditioning. Ductless systems provide even air distribution without leaks in ductwork, providing efficient and constant air temperatures by running at higher or lower speeds. They also allow occupants to control heating and cooling zones that are occupied or in-use rather than heating and cooling unoccupied spaces.
    • How Does a Ductless System Work? How Is It Controlled?
      Ductless heating and cooling systems are heat pumps that transfer heat between outdoor and indoor air using compressed refrigerant. Ductless systems perform this energy transfer efficiently through inverter technology to provide a matching supply for the current heating or cooling load.