Solar systems are beautifully simple in operation. Solar panels are noiseless with no moving parts and there is minimal long-term maintenance required. As a homeowner, you will enjoy lower utility bills thanks to your solar system. Solar cells convert sunlight into electricity via the “photovoltaic effect.” They are made of semi-conducting materials, the most common being silicon, which is the second most abundant element on the planet. Solar technology has been commercially used since the 1950s in applications ranging from calculators to satellites. Solar systems function optimally when facing south and in full sun from at least 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM, every day, throughout the year. Oftentimes, it is possible to design around shading caused by chimneys, dormers, or trees.