Engineering FAQs

When can I expect to see the final design results?

You can expect to see final solar design results 1-2 weeks after the survey. Occasionally, the utility company or your authority having jurisdiction will require design changes in order to grant permission for installation. 

Will you be reaching out to me with the final results?

Your salesperson will be reaching out after the survey with the final results.

What do I do if I have work done after receiving the design results?

If you have roofing, new construction, or electrical work done after receiving your design, please let us know. If the roofers add any obstructions, we’ll need to adjust the design accordingly!

Interconnection FAQs

What does “interconnection'' mean?

Interconnection approval indicates permission for your new system to interact with your local utility grid. Whether your system includes solar energy production or storage via a battery, the utility has to approve the installation, in order to keep their grid safe. 

What does the utility need to know during the interconnection process?

During the interconnection application process, the utility cares most about your AC (inverter) kW system size, which is not to be confused with your DC (solar) kW system size, which is used during most other parts of this industry. They have to account for the overall electricity load of your property in order to maintain and manage their grid. 

What’s next?

Interconnection Part 1 : After your first interconnection application is approved, we will apply for permits with your authority having jurisdiction. 

Interconnection Part 2 : After your second interconnection application is approved, the utility and Solar States will set up a time to install a bidirectional meter. Then we will set up your SRECs with your state and then provide access to an SREC aggregator (typically SRECTrade).

Don’t see an answer to your question? Email our interconnection team at

I see interconnection twice on my project timeline- why does this step occur twice?

Each utility breaks the interconnection process into two parts; one permission is given pre-installation, and the other after the installation. They will first approve the intended system to interconnect with the utility’s existing grid. Once the system is installed, an electric inspection occurs, then the utility will give us permission to operate the approved system.

Why do I need a bidirectional meter?

Once your project is in the “interconnection part two” stage, we are waiting for permission to operate the system. In conjunction with permission to operate, the utility will install a bidirectional meter (if your property does not yet have one). The bidirectional meter allows for net metering. Some meters (outside of PECO) already have this capability and no physical switch will be required.

How can I tell if I already have a bidirectional meter?

This will vary based on your utility. You can reach out directly to your utility company to inquire.

What is net metering and how can I set it up for my system?

Net metering can be set up for both residential and commercial solar array systems. Net metering allows for customers to sell the excess energy that they produce through solar back to the grid. 

The process for setting up net metering varies by utility. Please reach out to to inquire about your project specifically.

What is virtual net metering and how can I set it up for my system?

Virtual net metering can be utilized for a property owner with multiple utility accounts within a short distance of each other, and listed under the same name.. 

Once your solar array system is installed, virtual net metering can allow for the transfer of over production credits to a secondary account or location. Rather than selling the energy that your system produces back to the utility grid (AKA net metering), the credits are transferred to the secondary or tertiary account to reduce the utility bill. The requirements and rules differ by utility and state.

Please reach out to to inquire about virtual net metering for your system.

Third party energy supplier:

 Check your utility bill to make sure that you are buying your energy directly from your local utility (PECO, PPL, Met-Ed, PSE&G, etc) and not a third party energy provider. To do this, check that the “supply” line item on your bill is from your utility company, not another company. Third-party energy providers typically do not support net-metering, which means that they won’t properly credit you for the solar energy that you generate from month to month. We recommend that all of our solar customers purchase their energy directly from their utility.

Permitting FAQs

Why do I need a permit?

In order to install your solar array system or battery system, Solar States needs permission from your local authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) , or the township in which you live. Without this approval, we won’t be given permission to install and we won’t be given permission to turn your system on.

What types of permits does my project require?

The type of permits we need to acquire varies depending on your project and township. Typically, we acquire a building and electrical permit for each customer. Some townships have strict zoning requirements, Homeowners Associations, or historic preservation committees which all require additional permitting processes. If you live in a historic district or have an HOA, please tell your salesperson.

Why hasn’t my permit been approved yet?

Each authority having jurisdiction has a different timeline and procedure surrounding permit approvals. Historic districts, zoning boards, and homeowners associations can add review time to the permitting process. Rest assured, Solar States’ operations team is working diligently to get your permit approved.

What’s next?

After your permits are approved, you’ll get an email notification and an update in your Solar States App. Your project will move over to our materials procurement phase. We will reach out to get your availability for installation shortly!

The utility uses permit and inspection approvals after installation is complete in order to give a final approval for your solar array or battery to interact with the local utility grid.

Don’t see an answer to your question? Email our permitting team at


When can I expect my system to be installed?

Typically, we install our projects within 4 to 5 months of contract signing. Projects with caveats such as new construction can have slightly longer timelines. Your sales person will make you aware of these caveats early in your project timeline. 

Solar States installs our projects in the order that contracts are signed. You can always check the Solar States customer portal for your project’s status.

I have Covid-19 and my installation just happened/ is scheduled, what should I do?

Please contact us at or 215.939.6699. 

I need to cancel or reschedule my installation, what should I do?

Please contact us at or 215.939.6699. 

Do I need to be home during the installation?

Our crew will typically show up between 8:00-9:00 am on the first day of your installation. Please be prepared to meet them in the morning so that you can check in with the lead installer as well as provide access to the house. You do not need to be home throughout the duration of the installation as long as access can be provided if required..

Will my power be out during the installation?

For most solar installations we will not need to shut the power off, other than a short period of time typically towards the end of the installation. Some solar installations may require a longer power outage, but we will coordinate that with you at the beginning of the installation. The crew can walk you through the expected outage and make sure the timing works for your schedule. 

For battery installations, the installations can be a little bit more complicated, and will likely require an outage of 4 to 8 hours without power.


When do I get the online monitoring account?

You should receive an automated email from Enphase (or other) within a week or two after installation. If you do not receive an invitation from Enphase within that time period, please reach out to us at The Solar States app will also show access to the monitoring of your solar array.

When does my meter get switched?

Your utility company and Solar States will schedule to install a new bidirectional meter after the electrical and final inspections have been passed. We submit the inspection reports with our interconnection part 2 application to the utility, who will then approve the interconnection of your net metered PV system into their electric grid. This process can take about 6 weeks after installation.

How long does the electrical inspection usually take? Do I need to be onsite during the inspection?

About 30 minutes. Yes, ideally the homeowner is there to give the inspector access to the equipment inside. 

What happens after the electrical inspection?

Typically, after a 3rd party inspection, there is a final inspection with the township, after which we will submit an interconnection part 2 application to the utility.  In Philadelphia, Solar States submits an interconnection application to the utility for approval directly after we receive the approval paperwork from the 3rd party inspection agency. 

What happens between the electrical inspection and the meter swap?

We advise that system owners run heavy electrical loads such as dryers and dishwashers during the middle of the day while the most energy is being produced by the panels before the new bidirectional meter is installed, so that the house can self-consume as much of the solar energy as possible while you are not getting credited by the utility for solar energy sent back into the grid.

What’s next?

After your inspection passes, we will then apply for interconnection part two.

Don’t see an answer to your question? Email our interconnection team at


When do I get the SREC account?

After Solar States has received utility interconnection approval, we will set up an SREC trading account and send login information to you by email once it is done. This process can take many weeks, and, recently, even longer to approve as states are very backed up in their SREC reviews.

How long will it take for my SRECs to be set up?

Typically, for Pennsylvania customers the SREC set up process takes 3 to 4 weeks.  

As of October, 2022, New Jersey Clean Energy Program is experiencing some delays. Due to these delays, the set up process can take 5 to 6 months. But note, in New Jersey energy credit production will back date to PTO.

What is an SREC?

An SREC is a Solar Renewable Energy Certificate. For every MWh of solar energy you generate, you earn 1 SREC. Solar States sets up a trading account with SRECTrade on your behalf so that your credits can be traded and you can earn money for your production! 

How do I get paid for my SRECs?

Renewable Energy Credit payments will come from and can be customized to directly deposited to an account of your choice.

Don’t see an answer to your question? Visit  SRECTrade or email our SREC team at

What's Next?

Your system should be up and running! We’ll send you an owner’s manual shortly. Welcome to the Gone Solar Club!

Monitoring FAQs

Should I wash my panels?

If snow in the winter completely blocks the panels, the snow could be brushed off, but the solar panels are glass and heat up quickly; The snow will likely melt quicker on the solar panels than anywhere else. Otherwise, we live in a climate with enough rainfall to generally not require the manual washing of solar panels. Safety and maintenance information can be found in your home owner’s manual.

How should I take care of my PV system?

The best way to take care of your new photovoltaic system is to regularly check the online monitoring portal, at least once a month or weekly. It will show the kilowatts produced by your system in real time, and also gives alerts if something requires maintenance attention. Many people find the production data gratifying to see.

Feel free to reach out to our support team with any technical support questions at or you can contact them through the Solar States customer portal!

More Support and Monitoring Resources

My Power is out, what should I do now that I have solar? 

 Keep in mind that most solar installations are grid-tied systems and will shut-off during normal power outages. This is a legal requirement due to safety of power line workers during storms. The only way currently to operate your solar array during a storm is with a battery back-up system. We are currently installing an Enphase battery system (Encharge), or Tesla Powerwalls. If you have interest or questions about this, please contact  or

How do I update the Envoy password to reconnect to my home Wi-Fi network? – Support | Enphase

How to fix a ‘Gateway not reporting’ system error message? – Support | Enphase

Troubleshooting – Community | Enphase


About Solar States

Solar States is a solar installer and educator based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We are a certified B-Corp and Best for the World Nominee in both 2018 and 2019. We can install solar on any roofresidential or commercial – in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, or Maryland. If you have any questions about a transition to a sustainable energy system for your property, we can answer them.

Founded with a dual mission to install solar and educate the next generation.