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Home » All » Solargraf C&I: Enhance your commercial solar designs and proposals

Globally, the growth of the C&I (commercial & industrial) segment of the solar industry is outpacing all other segments.

Increasingly, installers who have previously only operated in the residential segment want to grow their business by opening or expanding into C&I operations.

Solargraf has developed a range of features specifically created to assist in designing and quoting commercial systems. These tools are specifically tailored for commercial applications, setting Solargraf apart from remote design software solutions that primarily target residential projects. Solargraf is also one of the few tools in the market where installers can build commercial and residential solar designs using the same platform.

Commercial solar design

Accurately modeling the roof or site for solar installation plays a critical role in any solar design. Using large-scale high-definition aerial imagery (courtesy of Nearmaps) and Lidar data, Solargraf installers can accurately model large roofs without incurring additional costs relative to residential projects.

Solargraf’s enhanced panel placement algorithm allows users to instantly max-fit a commercial roof or create custom arrays guided by a shading heatmap. Any Solargraf design will automatically avoid obstructions, keepouts, and roof edges to ensure successful installation.

Solargraf provides various guardrails for sales or design leaders to manage their team’s ability to rotate or tilt modules on any range of roof pitches.

Roof and obstruction detection

Solargraf allows installers to instantly detect the roof outline, pitch, obstructions, and surrounding trees in seconds. Rendering the site in 3D impresses prospective customers and allows the installer to calculate shading values for every pixel on the roof for every hour of the year. This crucial information plays a vital role in ensuring the optimal placement of solar modules and the feasibility of the designed layout when installed in the real world.

Solargraf’s “keepouts” feature allows installers to mark areas of the roof they want to keep free of modules – either areas with a high density of obstructions or areas reserved as a walkway to allow easy access to the roof and the modules for maintenance. To save time and effort in every design, installers can set default settings for keepout zones instead of editing them every time. Additionally, keepout zones can be modeled in various shapes to suit the design requirements.

Ground mount

Solargraf now supports a dedicated ground mount feature that allows users to create ground-mounted arrays intuitively. This feature will enable users to stack panels vertically, which is especially useful for larger systems or for designing carports. Users can define spacing between rows of vertically stacked panels to avoid shading between rows. Users can also elevate ground-mounted arrays off the ground, ensuring that shading & production values are true to life.

Leveraging a propriety shading algorithm approved by NREL, in conjunction with NREL’s System Advisory Model (SAM) for production calculations, installers can design and quote commercial systems confidently.

Commercial solar proposals

A sales proposal can effectively highlight the value of solar to potential customers. For the commercial & industrial space, the proposal’s financial details are paramount.

Accordingly, Solargraf now features an updated, commercial-specific financial breakdown on its proposal. Here, installers can model operations & maintenance (O&M) costs, insurance, property tax, inverter replacement, MACRS depreciation, and tax on utility bill savings.

Solargraf’s commercial proposal template also includes a tailored cashflow analysis for every month during the system’s life (typically 25 years).

For installers new to commercial solar, the platform also provides a financing suitability questionnaire, which guides an informed conversation between the sales representative and customer regarding the best way to finance the project.

Any installer using Solargraf for their designs and proposals can now access an exclusive financing product, BMO. Installers can easily model lease payments (including the buyout) and even apply for a credit check with BMO within the Solargraf platform.

Solargraf enables quick and accurate design and proposal building for commercial solar designs. The new 3D design tool will not only impress commercial property owners and bring their solar project to life but will also effectively communicate all the potential costs and savings, giving them the data required to make an informed decision.

There has never been a better time to try Solargraf for commercial solar designs and proposals.

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