It was a full house last Wednesday, April 24, at McHenry Public Library when Paul LaBarbera, a preeminent authority on solar energy and the CEO for Magitek Energy Solutions of Johnsburg, came to the podium to share his expertise on the viability of solar energy systems as solutions for area residents and businesses.
LaBarbera opened with a presentation about the fundamentals of solar energy and the benefits of solar energy systems. The discussion touched on topics ranging from how solar systems work, the components of a solar panel system, types and manufacturers of solar panel systems, governmental incentive programs and the process of finding a reliable installer.
His presentation was followed by a Question-and-Answer session where LaBarbera fielded questions from the audience of approximately 25 area residents and business owners.
Choosing the wrong installer can lead to problems with a new solar energy system. For instance, will the installer size and position the system optimally or will they sell additional solar panels based on what the installer stands to make on the project? Will the installer properly install the system so that it will stand the test of time and the elements, and will they install the system without creating leaks in the roof?
Attendees also had an opportunity to go on the roof of the library to take a first-hand look at the solar energy system LaBarbera installed there.
LaBarbera said that solar energy systems are great ways to reduce reliance on utility companies and can pay for themselves in electrical savings within seven years or fewer.
It was the second year in a row that LaBarbera has given the presentation at the library.