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How does solar energy work?

How does solar energy work?

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Sunlight is a natural source of energy. Solar technology converts sunlight into electricity that can power your home. Although you’re still connected to the electric grid, solar power is pollution-free and reduces your dependence on power generated from other sources, such as coal. But how does solar really work?

A simple look at solar farms

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During the day, light from the sun hits solar panels at a solar farm. The panels contain photovoltaic cells, which convert photons from sunlight into electricity.

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Electricity is sent from the solar farm to the grid.

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Electricity is sent from the grid to your home. No rooftop solar panels or special technologies are required on your end.

Solar panels on your home

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During the day, light from the sun hits solar panels on your roof. The panels contain photovoltaic cells, which convert photons from sunlight into electricity.

 

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Direct current (DC) electricity flows from the panels to an inverter, which converts DC power into alternating current (AC) power, which you can use in your home.

 

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A dual-register meter keeps track of the power your system produces, as well as the power you use from the grid.

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What happens when the sun goes down?

Whether on a solar farm or your rooftop, solar panels don’t do much at night. But remember, your home is always connected to the electric grid. So as long as the grid is up, you’re powered 24/7.

When it comes to going solar, Reliant has options — with or without the panels.
Compare our offers here ›

Choose any qualifying plan and Make It Solar for just $6.99 per month1

Make It Solar
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100% of your electricity usage will support renewable energy resources in Texas and beyond

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You’ll be doing your part for the planet, without the need for rooftop panels and with no changes to your electricity plan

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Since no panels are required, you can live in a house or apartment and still Make It Solar

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You’re still connected to the electric grid as always, so you’ll be powered day and night, rain or shine

 

Learn more about Make It Solar

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Reliant supports solar energy without rooftop panels

The Reliant Local Solar plan supports 100% locally sourced electricity from solar farms in Houston and Dallas.

If you want to support solar energy but don’t want the hassle and maintenance of solar panels on your roof, the Reliant Local Solar plan supports 100% locally sourced Texas solar energy, at a low fixed price for up to five years, without cancellation fees.2

Get more details about the Reliant Local Solar plan ›

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Already own solar panels? Make the most of their power

The Reliant Solar Payback plan is a great way to make your solar panels work harder for you.

Enroll today and start receiving bill credits up to your monthly usage for excess energy generated by your solar panels and returned to the grid.3 Plus, secure a fixed electricity price for the length of your term.

Get more details about the Reliant Solar Payback plan ›

Terms, conditions and other restrictions

1 Qualifying Plans do not include electricity plans with renewable content greater than the statewide average for renewable content (content information is available in the plan’s Electricity Facts Label).

Plan available to new acquisition customers only. Plan transferability restrictions may apply if moving to a new location during your contract term. This offer may not be available in all areas and is subject to change without notice. These solar farms are registered with ERCOT and the PUCT as Bovine Solar, LLC, and Eddy North Solar, LLC. 

The credit is exclusive of any monthly base charge, applicable taxes and fees, or other charges. Credits for excess energy are capped at the monthly usage from the grid. The credit per kWh for the excess energy you send to the grid will be the same per kWh energy rate we charge for the electricity plan. It may take up to 3 billing cycles after receiving Permission to Operate (PTO) from your utility to begin receiving credits.