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Support 2017-07-20T14:06:56+00:00

Modules

We use a range of high-performance modules from Hanwha, C-Sun, HESPV, and Canadian Solar.  Our 60-cell modules come in a range of 260W to 305W.  All our modules offer leading extreme weather ratings, as well as industry warranties, typically 10-12 year product warranty combined with 25-year performance guarantees.

Inverters

Our general string grid-connect systems use Fronius Primo transformerless inverters for single-phase projects, and Fronius Symo transformerless inverters for three-phase systems.  Fronius has proven itself time and again to deliver seamless inverter technology to marketplace.  Engineered and produced in Austria, the yields of most of our projects using Fronius inverters have exceeded design estimates. They also offer 10-year warranties, upgradeable to 20-year extended warranties.

Our high-performance systems use SMA inverters. SMA’s Sunny Boy series of inverters include their Secure Power Supply (SPS) solution, which can provide up to 2 kW of power when the grid is down and the sun is out. SMA inverters come with a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty with warranty extensions available.

Microinverters

Aside from string-inverters, BluePond Solar also offers DC power optimizers with SolarEdge and Enphase and AP Systems microinverters if they are a requirement of a given project.  Typically, such projects involve partial shading issues or string sizing requirements.  The homeowner also may not want or have room for an inverter mounted to a inside or outside the home.

Inverter / Chargers

We supply and install a wide range of charge controllers from manufacturers such as Schneider Electric, Midnite Solar, and Morningstar.  We can supply exactly exactly the charge controller you need for your specific application.

Charge Controllers

We supply and install a wide range of charge controllers from manufacturers such as Schneider Electric, Midnite Solar, and Morningstar.  We can supply exactly exactly the charge controller you need for your specific application.

Batteries

BluePond has a range of storage solutions for virtually any application.  From the workhorse tubular flooded battery to the versatile AGM, BluePond has the battery required for your project.  

While there are many options available, most of our customers end up opting for lead acid batteries, notably tubular flooded or AGM batteries.  New hybrid grid-connect/storage systems are coming on market soon, and BluePond has it available.  Cost-effective, wall-mounted lithium battery packs combined with hybrid inverters provide the ability to have backup power or use storage to utilize daytime generated energy after sundown.

Technical Documents

Frequently Asked Questions

Why choose BluePond Solar? 2017-09-12T12:22:16+00:00

In terms of our solar PV division, BluePond Solar takes pride in the fact that we are a truly focused on the bringing our customers the maximum amount of return on their investment as possible.  We design systems that are optimized for each specific application, whether it’s a simple roof-top grid-connected system or a complex off-grid system.  We approach our system designs with the care and attention you deserve.  Furthermore, we are able to offer our customers prices that outperform our competitors because use highly efficient project-management methods, while continuously seeking out ways to save our customers money.  We also use materials and design specifications that exceed code, along with a leading 5-year workmanship warranty on all our grid-tie installations, and 3-years with our off-grid installations.

BluePond also offers LED lighting, electromechanical, and passive solar/building envelope solutions for new residential builds.  Homeowners often have the desire to achieve a certain level of home efficiency, but they are left with the recommendations of their chosen builder.  We are able to step into a new residential build and assist the customer with what can otherwise be a fragmented process.

For commercial customers, BluePond has your energy-efficiency needs covered.  BluePond conducts energy studies and audits for commercial clients across a broad spectrum of industries.  We believe that no credible solar installation company has the ability to conduct business with commercial customers, without a thorough understanding of the energy systems within any building.  Often when commercial clients contact us with solar in mind, we are able to identify measures within their facilities that produce returns that exceed what they can receive from solar PV.  From energy auditing, LED lighting, to HVAC studies, BluePond Solar has your organization in mind to achieve maximum results.  

BluePond delivers excellence through its multidisciplinary approach on all its projects.  Our larger-scale customers know that we strive for the highest-level of accuracy and verifiability in all our projects.

What kind of a payback can I expect from a grid-tie system in British Columbia? 2017-08-14T19:56:26+00:00

Besides having the ability to be self-sustainable, do something positive for the environment, and implementing a system that could one day be upgraded to include back-up storage, economic return is often an important criterion in the decision-making involved in installing PV system. There are a number of factors that influence the rate of return from grid-connect PV systems.  Location is important.  There are parts of the Central and North Coast (as well as North Vancouver unfortunately) that struggle generating a reasonable return on investment. However, there are remote communities that can benefit from off-grid installations with a solid ROI.  Solar PV systems can dramatically reduce the combustion of diesel for the purposes of power generation in these communities.  The remainder of the province, notably the East Kootenays, experiences enough solar irradiance to present a favourable economic benefit, as low as a 12-year payback.

 

 

How do I maximize my return on investment if I live in Alberta? 2017-06-30T13:26:41+00:00

Within Alberta, solar PV design must consider the regime set forth in the province’s Micro-Generation Regulation, as well as the particularities of Alberta’s deregulated energy market.  Net-billing allows customers who install solar PV systems to receive credit for any energy that is exported to the grid.  This credit is applied on an equivalent basis to the customer’s consumption charges.  Alberta electricity customers also receive charges for transmission and delivery.  The economic optimization of commercial PV systems in Alberta often involves trying to offset as much of the transmission/delivery charges as possible, as generators do not receive credit on transmission /delivery charges when exporting power to the grid.  Such an approach aims to use as much electricity as possible as the system is producing within the home or plant.

The utilization rate determines how much of the energy produced from by a given generator is used within the facility it is servicing. A PV system with a low utilization rate (<50 percent) indicates that a facility is exporting a larger percentage of the energy it is producing, which means it is importing electricity at non-producing times, while paying the full rate for that electricity (i.e. rates that include both consumption and transmission/delivery charges).  Higher utilization rates reduce total transmission/delivery charges, improving a project’s return on investment.  In jurisdictions with net-metering regimes in place, for instance British Columbia, the design of roof-mounted PV systems typically attempts to match consumption with system yield with consideration to available roof area.  In Alberta under the current Microgeneration Regulation, closely matching consumption with yield produces a lower utilization rate, thus lowering the attractiveness of a project’s investment return.  For commercial customers, closely matching peak PV power with demand is an important consideration.

What grants or incentives are available for solar customers? 2017-06-30T13:26:22+00:00

Energy Efficiency Alberta’s Solar Rebate Program

Any grid-connected solar PV project in Alberta now qualifies for significant rebates from the Alberta Government.  Eligible projects, whether residential or commercial, can now apply for Microgeneration interconnection.  BluePond Solar has detailed knowledge of the program, and how customers can take advantage of it.  

Rebate Schedule:

Residential: $0.75 per Watt, 30 percent of project cost, or $10,000, whichever is the lowest.

Commercial: $0.75 per Watt, 25 percent of project cost, or $500,000, whichever is the lowest.

The Alberta Government’s solar rebate program delivered through Energy Efficiency Alberta is now in place.  Homes throughout the province, both single and multi-family, are eligible for rebates, as are businesses and various non-profit organizations.  Municipalities are still provided incentives through the Alberta Municipal Solar Program.  Off-grid projects and self-installed projects are ineligible.  Information on the Energy Efficiency Alberta solar rebate program can be viewed here.

No direct incentives are available in British Columbia at this time. However, the province’s Net-Metering Program for grid-connect systems allows customers to achieve a favourable economic return.

What is the difference between grid-tie, off-grid,and battery back-up? 2017-08-14T20:01:34+00:00

Most folks, whether residential or commercial, will go with a grid-tie system, which uses smart meters or bidirectional meters to record the import and export of electricity with the grid.  No batteries are used in this system, and they typically straightforward to engineer and install.  Off-grid systems are applied in buildings and applications where larger grid connection is cost-prohibitive. These systems are either AC-or or DC-coupled, and use inverters or charge controllers, inverter/chargers, deep-cycle batteries, and backup generators.  On the community scale, micro-grid systems can be used to reduce reliance on fossil fuels.  There are many remote communities and estates far from utility servicing that can benefit from off-grid solar integrated with auxiliary energy production. Battery back-up systems incorporate battery energy supply for use during power outages.  These systems can also be configured for optimizing a time-of-day rate schedule.  The lack of such a rates in BC fails to demonstrate a net-positive return on investment for these systems.  Battery back-up customers in British Columbia typically seek these systems for the piece of mind in knowing their loads will always be secure.

What factors should I consider when deciding whether solar is right for me? 2017-08-15T12:49:09+00:00

BC and Alberta receive plenty of solar irradiance, but there are still factors that may limit the feasibility of a photovoltaic (PV) system.  Roof-space, shading, orientation, and building structure are all factors that need to be considered before a thorough solar PV design is feasible.   We receive correspondence from many folks who are tired of paying for ever-increasing utility bills.  However, the environmental factors regarding their home don’t allow for a viable system to be installed.  There may be some trees that cannot be brought down or their roof simply doesn’t allow for it.  Sometimes this involves obstructions such as flues and vents on the roof or roofs that have multiple ridges and valleys that do not allow for the consistent mounting of modules.  Financial factors might need to be studied, such as return on investment and budget.

What factors influence pricing? 2017-08-15T12:52:46+00:00

BluePond is proud to offer some of the most competitive pricing in the industry.  While we might not win every bid, we will win most, and that is because of the value we provide.  We consistently offer the best prices combined with leading design and technology selection.  BluePond designs systems that exceed code.  We don’t only know the code, we know how to beat it.  We also ensure that our systems are fully optimized, ensuring the highest performance coefficient possible.

We will always communicate our honest assessment to all customers.  If our initial assessment demonstrates that a particular installation isn’t feasible due to any factor, we will communicate that directly to the customer immediately.  We will never install a grid-tie system that demonstrates a TOF (tilt-orientation factor) of less than 75 percent.  Moreover, we will not install systems on sites that have excessive shading issues.  We do this to not only protect the client, but also to ensure the emission-reduction gains that are available through the installation of PV modules are actually realized.  The installation of modules on sub-optimal structures is not in the best interest of anyone.

Pricing is influenced by a number of factors, with scale being the most important.  It is intuitive to understand the difference in economies of scale between a small residential system and a utility-scale system in the megawatts.  The smallest grid-connect system we will install is in the 3.8-5kW range, but this depends on whether or not the installation will take place outside geographic centres or not.  While we design and build grid-connect and off-grid systems in remote parts of BC and Alberta, the determining factor in whether it is feasible or not depends on the ratio of scale to fixed travel costs.  Of course, off-grid systems have a different set of criteria when evaluating whether a system is a viable proposition or not.  Please give us a call at 1-888-260-0302 to discuss the feasibility of your project with us.

With respect to the structures we install on, obstructions are often the greatest barrier to achieving the lowest cost-per-Watt.  Sometimes we have to deal with flues, vents, and stacks that require us to design systems that include landscape orientated modules or complex layouts.  Furthermore, we might construct arrays on different sections of roof.  These factors can influence cost.  Ground-mount installations can provide higher yields, while also being scaleable, but will likely demonstrate a higher cost-per-Watt compared to a similar sized roof-mount system.

Furthermore, we need to consider the route of the lines from the roof (or ground-mount) to the inverter and/or electrical panel.  With our leading design processes, we are able to study all of these influences remotely 95 percent of the time.