In the beginning Westcoast Solar Energy primarily completed residential projects. As the company grew it became more focused on the commercial market. Having said that working with homeowners to take advantage of solar electricity to save money and help the environment remains a passion. Residential projects present a unique blend of needs. Performance and aesthetic factors are important as are the quality of installation and a longevity based design. They have benefitted from the knowledge gained in the commercial market because projects receive a great deal of trickle down technology. These factors combined with expert installation teams means a Westcoast Solar Energy residential system provides the best value for long term production and lower total cost.
Longevity Based Design
Reliability and longevity are the most important factors to consider in a solar design. A non-functioning solar array can quickly change from a valuable energy generating asset to a roof mounted liability. PV technology has changed greatly over the past 10 years, but solid construction principles and professional electrical work has been around for generations. Simple things like properly locating electrical equipment, minimizing rooftop conduit runs, and using designs that reduce roof penetrations lead to solar arrays that function properly with little maintenance for decades. The solar arrays that WCSE installs today have roots in the systems of the past. Over the years they have proven what works and what doesn’t.
Expert Site Surveys
Satellite images and remote measuring are now becoming commonplace in the solar industry. These techniques sacrifice accuracy for low upfront operational costs and can lead to installation problems, permitting and performance issues. Westcoast Solar Energy will not quote or install a project until a thorough site survey has been completed. During the survey a member of our engineering team will measure all available space, evaluate the quality, strength and remaining life of the roof. They’ll work with you to map out conduit and equipment locations and evaluate the electrical system to see if it is safe and sized properly to accommodate a solar installation.
This is where residential projects get fun. Everyone wants a high performance system, however it needs to look good, too. WCSE’s residential designers have completed thousands of custom designs and know how to blend the two seamlessly. The installation teams have the ability and tools to make every installation look great.
WCSE contracts are simple, to the point and clear with the intention of installing your project for the price quoted. What you won’t find are loopholes, allowances, or “subject to engineering approval” clauses.
Westcoast’s Installation crew members are long term employees each with over 5 years experience. A commitment to quality means not paying the crew bonuses based on speed like other prominent local companies. The Westcoast crew is rewarded for positive customer experiences. The result is no compromises on installation quality whatsoever.
Throughout the entire installation process the Operations team keeps you up to speed on the progress of your project. Communications containing plans for approval, permit status, installation schedules and daily crew reports while on-site ensure a smooth project and no surprises. Need a quick answer to a question, call us, we answer the phone!
Support and Service
Have a question on your electric bill? Need help reading your production or wondering if you should clean your array? We’re here, give us a call. We answer the phone M-F 9-5.
Roof mounts are the most popular solar installation for a reason. They are less expensive, utilize previously unused space and are elevated to mitigate shading effects. Different roof types require different attachment methods. Westcoast uses a combination of proprietary attachment points and roofing industry best practices to ensure that your roof doesn’t fail or leak. Through years of experience WCSE engineers know when a roof will require a professional roofer to ensure a long life. This method may cost more initially, however this cost is usually negligible when compared to the future cost of major roof repairs. When you choose Westcoast you are making the choice for long term value.
A WCSE specialty is large residential ground mounts. Their investment in specialty equipment enables even the most complicated installations to be completed flawlessly, on time and on budget. Unique in the marketplace as the only solar company to self perform every aspect of a project with company owned equipment.
The standard industry practice is to rent the minimal equipment necessary or rely on a patchwork of subcontractors and non skilled laborers to complete a project. This practice makes it impossible to deliver the consistent quality Westcoast Solar Energy is committed to.
Westcoast owns their own excavation equipment. Crews show up trained to handle most underground conditions as they occur. Boulders, hard-pan, cobble and steep hillsides often send lesser companies back to the rental yard for more equipment with extra charges to the customer. In the long run this strategy has proven to actually cost less than the typical subcontractor/ laborer model an example of how Westcoast creates advantages for their customers and applies that advantage to providing higher quality solar equipment.
- Proprietary WCSE Advanced Groundmount
- In house installation
- Accurate production
- Easy maintenance
This is a very common term in solar construction and project development. However, if you asked for a definition you would get a diverse array of answers . To most, value engineering means lowest initial equipment cost. WCSE values a solar array differently. Sure, a low initial cost is one of the drivers, but true value is achieved in the lowest combined cost of ownership. The true cost then is the initial cost plus the cost to operate and maintain the system over the useful life of the array.
One item that gets overlooked is the initial cost being subsidized by tax incentives. Sometimes up to 66% of the initial cost is returned to the original purchaser, while repairs or replacing failed equipment is not incentivised. Add to this any costs associated with financing and lost generation and the lowest initial cost can easily become the most expensive solar array to operate.
WSCE’s definition of value engineering is…applying cost advantages from efficiencies and smart design to superior reputable equipment, materials and quality workmanship allowing for a longer, trouble free investment.
In summary Westcoast Solar Energy customers experience the lowest true cost in the business.
Over the years solar PV technology has changed greatly and Westcoast has successfully navigated this ever changing landscape by sticking to a basic design credo: Use proven technology from reputable manufacturers and installing properly using advanced tools. WCSE is not quick to jump on the latest bandwagon or deviate from their tried and true design credo. Simply stated, Westcoast Solar Energy will not allow their customers to become product testers for the latest whiz bang solar gadget.