Frequently Asked Questions

What is the DFW Solar Tour?

The DFW Solar Tour is a free, one-day event on Saturday, October 1, 2016, generally from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (see below) during which you are invited to tour innovative green homes and buildings around the DFW Metroplex and learn how homeowners and businesses can use solar energy, wind energy, energy efficiency, and other sustainable technologies.

The 7th annual DFW Solar Tour is organized by the non-profit North Texas Renewable Energy Group (www.ntreg.org ) in cooperation with  the Texas Solar Energy Society (www.txses.org ) and the American Solar Energy Society (www.ases.org ) National Solar Tour.

What is the National Solar Tour?

The 21st annual National Solar Tour is the world's largest grassroots solar event.  The tour is organized by the non-profit American Solar Energy Society (ASES).   The tour offers people the opportunity to visit innovative green homes and buildings to see how they can use solar energy, energy efficiency, and other sustainable technologies to reduce monthly utility bills and help reduce their impact on precious resources like air, water and energy. More than 165,000 participants will visit some 5,500 buildings in 3,200 communities across the U.S.

What is the difference between the ASES National Solar Tour and the NTREG DFW Solar Tour?

The North Texas Renewable Energy Group is a local organizer of the ASES National Solar Tour. Think of NTREG as a local franchise of ASES. Both are nonprofit organizations. 

About your Tour Hosts

Tour hosts have opened their homes and business to share their renewable energy and conservation knowledge and experiences with the public free of charge.  The aim is to demonstrate the variety of ways that people can reduce utility costs, conserve resources, live healthy lifestyles, make their own electricity and more.

How will this event promote solar/renewable and energy efficiency in Texas?

The DFW Solar Tour will educate the public on energy conservation, solar, wind, geothermal, and other renewable energy options available to homeowners and businesses by allowing them to see actual operating installations and talk to the homeowners about their experiences and level of satisfaction. In some locations tour participants will also be able to speak with vendors and installers and ask specific questions. In addition, many homes on the tour will be chosen to provide examples of energy-efficient renovations, green/sustainable design, and the use of green materials during construction or remodeling so that tour participants can get an idea of the variety of green options available to them. 

 

EVENT DETAILS

When is the Tour?

The DFW Solar Tour is a one-day event on Saturday, October 1, 2016
Tour Hours:  Generally speaking, tour hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., but times may vary at the discretion of the tour host, so check the individual site hours before you arrive (non-standard tour times are indicated in red). Visit our Locations page and follow the links for each host site to see it's visiting hours along with maps, directions, brief property description and photos provided by the host site.

What does it cost ?

The DFW Solar Tour is free of charge.

Solar Tour Etiquette

Visitors are guests, please be courteous and polite. Tour hours are generally 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Please don’t arrive early or late.  Remember, tour hours may vary at some sites so it is important to check the individual tour host page on the DFW Solar Tour website to confirm visiting hours before you get started, non-standard tour times are indicated in red. There are no public restroom facilities at tour sites. Practice the Golden Rule and everything will work out great.

 

TOUR HOSTS

Do I need to have a solar installation on my home or business to be a Solar Tour host?

Solar installations are desirable but not required. In addition to homes with renewable energy installations, we also want to include homes with green/sustainable features: passive solar, use of green materials, xeriscaping, rainwater collection, energy monitoring, and more. Cool houses are great, but even more important are enthusiastic homeowners who want to share their personal experiences about renewable and energy efficiency, and how they reduced their impact on the environment.

How do I sign up to be a DFW Solar Tour Host?

If you want to join the DFW Solar Tour, you’ve come to the right place. Send us an email at info@dfwsolartour.org and tell us of your interest.  Be sure to include a brief description of your solar and conservation improvements.
 
Join the DFW Tour and we will register your site on the National Solar Tour site and give each host site a free one-year individual family TXSES/NTREG joint membership.

If you don’t live in DFW area, we encourage you to join the National Solar Tour by registering with the American Solar Energy Society at http://www.ases.org/solar-tour/about-the-tour/

What are the expectations of a Solar Tour Host?

The tour’s success depends on enthusiastic hosts sharing their personal experiences with renewables, energy efficiency, and how they save money and reduce their impact on the environment. Tour hosts may control tour hours, and determine where people can go and what they see, after all, it’s your property.
NTREG recommends that each tour location have at least two hosts on site to greet visitors and guide them to points of interest. If you need some staffing help, NTREG will try to provide a volunteer at as many sites as possible.

Hosts need to provide DFW Solar Tour organizers with information to post on the website including: address, description of energy-related improvements, photos, and visitor hours.

Liability Insurance

Tour hosts should check their liability insurance (typically your homeowner insurance) for coverage.   Tour participants are advised that they participate at their own risk.  NTREG assumes no liability for participating homeowners or tour participants.  There has never been an injury incident in all the years of the National Solar Tour. Let’s maintain that record by always putting safety first.

What to do if tour host needs to cancel?

If you are signed up as a DFW Solar Tour host and something comes up that requires you to cancel, please contact tour organizers as soon as possible. We will make every effort to remove your location from the website.

Can I promote my business on the DFW Solar Tour?

Our nonprofit mission is to educate and inform the public. Business partners are welcome to display and promote their services with the consent of the individual tour hosts.

 

NTREG

What is the North Texas Renewable Energy Group (NTREG)?

The North Texas Renewable Energy Group is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit volunteer organization and is the local chapter of the Texas Solar Energy Society (TXSES), which is the state chapter of the American Solar Energy Society (ASES). NTREG encourages its members to become members of the Texas and American Solar Energy Societies, but it’s not required.

NTREG was established in 2001 with the primary goal of educating North Texans about the power of renewable energy ("RE").  Additional areas of interest include electric cars and alternative transportation, biodiesel, as well as all aspects of energy conservation, both residential and commercial. If it pertains to energy, sustainability, or efficiency, we're probably discussing it

NTREG members come quite literally from all walks of life. You need not be an engineer or the proverbial rocket scientist to be an active and productive participant with us. 

Meetings are held on the second Saturday of each month, from 10:00am to 11:30am at the REI Family Outdoor Recreation Store in Dallas (north side of I-635 between the Dallas North Tollway and Midway Road). Check our Events page for meeting topics and maps.

We participate annually in a variety of events such as the National Solar Tour, Renewable Roundup, Earth Days (Dallas, Irving, Plano, and others), Prairie Fest, and more.

Have Solar Power – Will Travel

NTREG members frequently provide solar electric power equipment at various events to power soundstages and other electrical needs. Our goal is to help educate people in solar energy and energy-related topics. What better way to teach about solar energy than by letting the public see it in action?

How do I become a member of the NTREG?

Follow this link  http://www.ntreg.org/donatejoin.htm
Membership dues are tax –deductible, and all monies fund our efforts to promote renewable energy, energy conservation, and a sustainable future. Dual memberships help promote statewide solar programs that promote solar energy. TXSES sponsors programs like special scholarship fund was established by TXSES to support student education in renewable energy and conservation.  In 2010 the NTREG was proud to nominate the Bonham ISD’s Agriculture Science Department for a $1,000 TXSES Grant to support its work on electric conversions of tractors and lawn mowers.