Solar Champion Stories

Maine Couple Fuels Up On Sunshine

Jim and Liz Freyenhagen have been enjoying the benefits of solar energy for several years now, which they produce with 2 solar arrays and solar hot water system. ReVision installed their second solar array this spring; its ground mounted 32 Q Cell panels generate an additional 9.6 kW, which will help provide most of their electric heat at their home in Washington, Maine when the colder months arrive.

This, alone, is plenty of cause for Jim to rejoice, "I'm looking forward to not buying firewood for the first time in 15 years!"

When Jim and Liz first considered going solar, their motivation was financial. "Initially it was just the idea of saving money," Jim remarks, but they soon discovered the full potential of transitioning to solar energy at home.

"Once we visited ReVision, and we saw the electric car charger, that was the one that really sold me, because we have an electric car now too."

They've owned an all-electric Nissan Leaf for 2.5 years now, and it's powered by the sun, reducing their carbon footprint even further, while increasing the return on investment for their 2 PV systems. The Leaf meets their commuting needs and has already paid back over $3,000 dollars of itself, just in gas savings and no oil changes.

The Freyenhagens are very pleased with their solar lifestyle, and the overall savings it creates for them. "The last check I sent CMP was for $300, and that lasted 14 months - in that time we powered our house, drove over 12,000 miles in the car, and heated all of our hot water, since, of course, we haven't bought oil since we put in our solar hot water system. The amount of savings you get are substantial, once you get going with it!"

Jim and Liz are both middle school teachers in the area and enjoy discussing green energy with their students, fostering a new generation of solar farmers. Jim affirms, "I talk to students about solar as often as I can!" As for any adults who are curious about installing solar for their home, the Freyenhagens recommend ReVision Energy for its attention to detail and exemplary customer service. "They're fantastic. If anything goes wrong, one quick email and it is corrected. We're really happy with them."

Soon Jim and Liz will return to their classrooms after a summer of abundant sunshine, but even as Maine's less sunny weather begins to creep in they will still be harvesting plenty of electrons. "My biggest surprise with solar was the fact that even on cloudy days we're generating more power than I would've thought, that's always stunned me."