How to: Do It Yourself Solar

The basics of a PhotoVoltaic (PV) system include a:
solar module(s) to create electricity from the sun,
a battery bank to store electricity during periods of non-sunlight,
a charge controller to keep batteries charged, but not over charged,
and an inverter to convert the Direct Current (DC) electricity from the batteries to Alternating Current (AC) for regular household appliances.

A grid-tie system may not have either a battery bank or a charge controller as the grid is used during non-sunlight hours.

If you hire an independent contractor to do your installation, most states require that they be certified. It doesn't mean they know any more about it than you, it only means they paid the government a fee. You can save a lot of money by doing it yourself. If you do it yourself, you will understand it and how to maintain it, and it will be the way you want it, and you can add to it at anytime without asking anybody. So far, the government has not stooped to the Satanic level of requiring a fee or certification for work done by a private citizen on his own property.