Solar in a Box is the pre-mounted, pre-wired, grounded, all-AC solar electric system that’s been gaining traction recently through retailers like Sam’s Club. Developed by Ready Solar of San Mateo, California, it looks like one of the products that could finally bring solar electricity to the masses.
Having achieved nearly 1,000 installations–aided, in part, by contractors operating out of 20 Sam’s Clubs in San Antonio, Austin, and Honolulu–the company claims that it has now reached the break-even point, which is rare in an industry where present losses are assumed to make up for future gains. “Nobody is making money in this business,” said Ready Solar CEO Robert Giles, to Cleantech Group. “You have to be a really lean and mean company to make it.”
Part of what makes the Solar in a Box lean and mean is the fact that it costs around the same as the price of the parts themselves, but comes largely pre-assembled–thus cutting the usual installation time of three days down to one, which trims back contractor costs. Key features of this solar system include a 500w rooftop solar array, connection hardware such as a junction box, expansion materials if you wish to add multiple panels and a roof mount.