Solar Champion Stories

Solar and Heat Pumps Provide Clean Comfort for Scarborough Homeowners

Paul Hertlein arrived in Maine in 1995 to join Shipyard Brewing Company's microbrewery expansion. The job also took him around the country, as microbreweries were first catching on, but Maine became home.

Paul works for an internet company today, and when asked if he moonlights as a homebrewer, he laughed and said, "I feel like it's a lot of work for beer that's not as good as the beer I can buy." Many people agree that the reality of homebrewing makes it much more than a casual hobby, and so, for those who are passionate, there is a lot of opportunity.

Locally-Sourced Electricity

The Hertleins had been interested in renewable energy for some time, and took the step to learn more when they heard ReVision was holding a meeting in Scarborough. They arranged their free solar evaluation, and ended up signing on not just for solar, but for a heat pump and heat pump water heater as well. They were pleasantly surprised to learn about the complementary nature of heat pumps and solar, thinking before that solar electricity was as far as you could take your clean energy transition at home.

For Paul it's more than an investment, he's always wanted to create power from the sun. "To me it's a no-brainer: If we can get energy from the sun, why don't we? It's mind-boggling that more people don't do it."

Clean Comfort for Years

This February will mark three years since they had their equipment installed by ReVision, and they are still pleased with the decision. Along with the clean electricity and consistent comfort, Paul enjoys monitoring his solar array online, and witnessing new record-setting months of electricity generation. "I get a kick out of seeing how much carbon I've offset, or how many trees I've planted, too," Paul shared.

Their household oil consumption has dropped significantly, and through the winters the heat pump has provided comfort on all but the very coldest of days, when they supplement it with a gas fireplace insert.

"Creating electricity from the sun as I've done for the past three years, you don't always think about it up being up there on your roof, but knowing that the electricity I'm producing from the sun is not being created with fossil fuels and it's not contributing to any of the ongoing climate change - that's what makes me feel best about my purchase."

Paul Hertlein