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August 16, 2023

Solar Power for Businesses: Finding Your Perfect Fit


The sun’s not just shining; it’s powering businesses! With the rise of solar energy, more enterprises, big and small, are tapping into the sun’s rays. If you’re a savvy business owner or manager, you’ve probably wondered how solar could benefit you. But, how do you pick the right size? Let’s break it down.

Commercial vs Industrial Solar Power Systems

Commercial Solar Power Systems: 10 kW to 500 kW

Commercial solar power systems are designed for businesses that operate in buildings with higher energy demand than a typical household such as offices, retail stores, restaurants, or schools. Commercial solar power systems typically range from 10 kW to 500 kW in size and can be installed on rooftops, carports, or ground-mounted arrays. Systems of this size can help businesses reduce their carbon footprint, increase their property value, and save money on their electric bills.

Check out how a commercial-sized system benefited Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm in Wheatland, CA, famous for their delicious homemade foods and the largest U-pick pumpkin field in the world. With the help of a 74 kW solar power system installed by Sunworks, Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm expects a 60% decrease in their power bill. Over time, this shift to solar energy will create extra funds that can be invested in additional farm equipment.

Industrial Solar Power Systems: 500 KW or higher

Industrial solar power systems are designed to provide electricity for large-scale industrial processes, such as manufacturing, mining, and agriculture. These systems typically range from 500 kW to several megawatts in size and are usually ground-mounted or installed on large flat roofs. Industrial solar systems can help businesses reduce their dependence on the grid, hedge against rising energy prices, and generate revenue by selling excess power to utility companies.

A good example of an industrial-sized system is Rivermaid Trading Company in Lodi, CA. Rivermaid, a leading innovator in growing, packaging, and shipping fresh pears and cherries around the world, installed a 1.5 MW system on multiple buildings within their facility. Almost 60% of the electric power consumed at the facility is offset by these solar panels. The savings resulting from Rivermaid’s solar transition have provided them with extra funds for investment, fueling further growth of the company.

The differences between commercial and industrial solar power systems are not only in the size and location, but also in the technical aspects, such as the type of panels, inverters, and batteries. These components have to be carefully selected and matched according to the specific needs and conditions of each project. For example, industrial solar power systems may require more advanced inverters that can handle variable loads and power quality issues. Both types of systems may benefit from energy storage solutions that can provide backup power and grid stability.

Powering Up With Energy Storage

Solar batteries enable surplus solar power to be stored during times of low demand and then utilized during periods of high demand. Power outages can cause significant losses and damages to businesses, especially those that rely on machinery, computers, or refrigeration. Energy storage can provide backup power to these businesses and prevent them from losing revenue, customers, or products. Read more about how energy storage solutions helped Desert Valley Credit Union in Ridgecrest, CA.

Choosing the Right Scale for Your Business

Solar options for your business depend on several factors, like your objectives, the size and type of system, the location and orientation of the site, and the availability of incentives and financing options.

Sunworks can help you make an informed decision; we’ll assess your site, analyze your energy usage, and provide you with a customized proposal that suits your needs and budget. Contact us today to get started.

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