Tuesday, March 21, 2023

How To Add Solar Panels To Your House

How To Run Your House Solely On Solar Power

Do Solar Panels Add Value To Your Home?

By: Cherise Threewitt | Updated: Nov 3, 2021

Why wouldn’t everyone want to convert their family homestead to function off the sun’s rays? Sounds like quite the formula for happiness, right? Deciding to go solar can have some pretty big benefits. But be careful: There’s lots to think about before you cut the cord with your local utility provider.

Solar power is free . Solar power is efficient . Important to many of us in these days of climate change: Solar energy is also free of pollution.

But the initial costs of getting set up for solar power can be daunting. And once you decide to go fully solar, you may have to cope with foul weather, which could put a damper on your plans to live solely off the sun.

When you use solar panels, you can still get power provided by the utility company in situations where you can’t get enough electricity or don’t have any power stored. But the ultimate goal for many is to eliminate the need for fossil fuels entirely, to boot the fossil-fueled utility companies and to live a sun-powered life.

Planning to run your house completely on solar power requires considerable financial, mental and emotional investments. The infrastructure is a little more complicated than the traditional setup. The calculations of building your new system and running it must be more precise. A mistake can leave you without enough juice to get by.

But running a house completely on solar power is absolutely doable.

  • Paying for What’s Free
  • Heating Your Home With A Solar Photovoltaic System

    Solar photovoltaic panels can be used to heat your home as well. In many ways, this is a preferable approach because itâs a mechanically simpler approach, especially if you already use electricity to heat your home. With electric heating, thereâs no separate system that carries heated fluid into your home, and no heat exchangers that need to be mechanically integrated.

    In addition, it doesnt matter if the sun isnt shining. Your solar home will stay connected to the grid, so you will use grid electricity to heat your home when the sun isnt shining. If your solar system is designed to generate 100% of your electricity in a year, youll probably generate excess electricity in summer that will be sent into the grid, banking you credits that you use in the winter.

    The one main disadvantage of solar photovoltaics for heating is lower efficiency compared to solar thermal. While solar thermal efficiency varies greatly with the climate , in the best case scenario they can be more than 70% efficient.

    The best solar photovoltaic panels, on the other hand, have a nameplate efficiency of about 22%, and reach less than that in real-world conditions.

    Even so, the advantages of solar photovoltaics tend to outweigh this disadvantage.

    Learn Hub: Do It Yourself Solar

    When you choose DIY solar, youre taking control of your solar project. While a DIY solar system involves some extra effort, you can act as your own project manager and save thousands when setting up your solar panels. You can build it yourself, hire local laborers to help, or do a mix of both.

    Regardless of which approach you choose, our Do-It-Your-Way Solar Guide will help you learn everything you need to know about DIY solar panels, including planning, system design, set up, and more. And, you can when youre ready to get started.

    Building your own solar system puts you in complete control of your solar project but requires a lot of planning and hard work. By opting to go DIY solar, you can actually cut your costs by more than $12,000 for the average home solar system. Not a bad investment.

    You can go solar today for about one-third of what it would have cost ten years ago. In fact, the cost of a fully installed system went down from $7.14/watt in 2010 to $2.50/watt by 2020.

    Read Also: How To Read Energy Bill With Solar Panels

    Solar Power For The Home: Benefits

    A significant benefit to PV installation is a lower energy bill, but the magnitude of this benefit depends on the amount of solar energy that can be produced given the available conditions and the way in which utilities charge for electricity.

    The first consideration is the solar irradiation levels available in the home’s geographical location. When it comes to using solar panels, being closer to the equator is generally better, but other factors must be considered. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory produces maps for the U.S. showing solar irradiation levels the tools on its website provide detailed solar information for specific locations within the U.S.

    Similar maps and data are available in other countries as well, often from government environmental agencies or renewable energy organizations. Equally important is the home’s orientation for rooftop arrays, a south-facing roof without trees or other objects obstructing sunlight maximizes the available solar energy. If this is not available, panels can be mounted on external supports and installed away from the house, incurring additional costs for the extra hardware and cables.

    The final benefit is the potential effect on a home’s value due to the addition of a solar array. In general, it is reasonable to assume that solar panels would raise the value of most homes.

    What Are Solar Batteries How Much Do They Cost

    Should You Add Solar Panels to Your Home?

    Solar batteries store your excess solar energy so you can use it when you need it most, like during a power outage.

    Most home solar batteries cost between $10,000 and $15,000 to install, so they add a substantial amount to the total cost of a solar installation. However, in a number of states, there are specific rebates to cut the cost of adding batteries to your solar system. It is also worth noting that the 26% federal solar investment tax credit applies to batteries when they are installed to store solar energy generated by a home solar system. This further reduces the cost significantly.

    Despite the high price tag, solar batteries are cheaper and more popular than ever before as more homeowners want to protect themselves from widespread power outages. In fact, around 70% of people that use our website to request quotes from local solar companies ask for battery storage. This number is up from less than 50% only two years ago. Blackouts are becoming more common throughout the U.S., and what better way to keep your lights on than a solar battery?

    You can read more about net metering and battery savings here.

    Find out if solar-plus-battery storage is worth it where you live

    Don’t Miss: How Long Until Solar Panels Pay Off

    How Much Does It Cost To Install Solar Panels

    The average cost to install solar panels in the United States is about $12,000 after federal tax incentives. On the low end, you can install a smaller system for around $5,000, while a high-priced Tier 1 solar panel system can cost $40,000 or more.

    There are additional costs that go into an installation project beyond the price of panels. In fact, only about a quarter of the installation costs are actually for the panels. Labor costs, operational costs and additional equipment, such as inverters and control circuitry, make up the rest of the price.

    Solar energy companies install the solar panels, provide maintenance and offer warranties on both the panels and the work. These additional services arent free, but they are often worth it. A few additional factors affect the price of solar panel installation.

    How Much Does One Solar Panel Cost

    Solar panels normally retail for around $.70 to $1.50 per watt and range between 150 and 350 watts per panel, making the average cost of a single panel between $100 and $650. If you’re installing one panel, high-quality, high-output options are ideal. Here’s a look at the efficiency of common panel types:

    • Monocrystalline panels: 17%-24% efficient
    • Polycrystalline panels: 15%-20% efficient
    • Thin/film panels: 7%-14% efficient

    Many retailers sell panels individually and as part of a larger system. Its important to factor hardware and installation costs into your single-panel project as well. This portion of your installation can make up as much as 30% of your overall cost.

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    Solar Energy Boom & Benefits

    The United States is the worlds second country that is equipped with the most solar power panels in 2021.

    Solar energy in the United States has grown exponentially in the last five years.

    Solstice reports that in the second quarter of 2021, the United States powered 13.1 million homes after installing 2.1 gigawatts of solar PV that generated almost 69.1 gigawatts of energy.

    It also states that the capacity of solar PV will double in the next five years, which means by 2024, more than 15 gigawatts of solar PV will be installed yearly.

    Now, lets look at some other interesting facts.

    So, what does it mean for the world when one average American family installs solar PV for a year?

    The findings based on EPAs Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator states that one family going solar would avoid adding approximately 12,500 pounds of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.

    It also means growing 122 seedlings for more than 10 years, not burning over 8,000 pounds of coal, not charging almost 937,683 smartphones, and driving 18,000 miles less.

    A whopping 59 percent of Americans say that seeing electricity savings on their bill is the biggest motivation.

    Around 58 percent of Americans are happy and satisfied after installing solar panels, and believe that this effort of theirs would help the world make a better place for future generations.

    Installing solar power panels also creates more jobs in the market.

    It is the fastest-growing job and has around 242,000 solar workers.

    Cost Of Solar Panel Mounts

    Adding more Solar Panels with NO room left on roof WHAT I DID

    Solar panel mounts cost anywhere from $10 to $3,000 each, depending on if its fixed, adjustable or a motorized tracking mount. Similar to the panel types, the least expensive option is the least efficient and the more expensive options are more effective.

    • Fixed: $10-$15 each. These are completely stationary and cannot be adjusted to capture more or less sunlight depending on weather and season. They are the least expensive type of mount. Installing this mount is optimal in regions where continuous sunlight can be expected, as adjustments wouldn’t be as necessary in order to maximize on energy production.
    • Adjustable: $50 each. These can be tilted depending on the intensity of the sun or the season. They are more expensive than the fixed mounts but will have more energy efficiency. Adjusting the panels to soak up more sun in varying seasons will equate to greater energy production. These adjustments can also be useful when the weather turns, as you can lay them flat to avoid damage from wind.
    • Tracking: $500-$3,000+ each. Follows the arch of the sun and provides maximum efficiency. The amount of energy you will be able to generate depends not only on panel construction and mounting, but your location. Though the initial cost for tracking is higher than other mounts, these can often get you the highest return on investment, as they make the most of every ray of sunlight. Track mounting may add 45% energy production.

    Read Also: How Much Would It Cost To Get Solar Panels

    Looking To Reduce Your Dependence On Traditional Power Sources Heres How To Figure Out Whether Solar Is For You

    If youve been thinking about adding a solar power system to your home, you arent alone. Some 3 million systems sit atop American roofs, including about 400,000 that were installed each year in 2019 and 2020, according to Becca Jones-Albertus, director of the Solar Energy Technologies Office at the U.S. Energy Department.

    Solar Panel Upgrade And Compatibility

    What panels were used in your original installation, and does any component require an upgrade? Your solar panels will continue to generate electricity for more than 25 years, at which point you might see more significant dips in production, so its unlikely youll need to replace the panels of the original system. But still ask your installer to check everything, including the racking and wiring.

    When adding new panels, its a good idea to install the same type as your original array if possible. This ensures everything will match aesthetically, and has the same power outputs and efficiencies as your other panels. If youre unable to install the exact same panels, you should still look to install new panels with the same or similar power output otherwise you could damage your existing array.

    Read Also: How Much Do Solar Cells Cost

    Youre Our First Priorityevery Time

    We believe everyone should be able to make financial decisions with confidence. And while our site doesnt feature every company or financial product available on the market, were proud that the guidance we offer, the information we provide and the tools we create are objective, independent, straightforward and free.

    So how do we make money? Our partners compensate us. This may influence which products we review and write about , but it in no way affects our recommendations or advice, which are grounded in thousands of hours of research. Our partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable reviews of their products or services.Here is a list of our partners.

    Cost Of Solar Power In Canada 2021

    Do Solar Panels Add Value to Your Home?

    Published by Rylan Urban on Feb 27 2018. Last updated March 11, 2021.

    The average installation cost of solar power in Canada is $3.01/watt, or $22,500 for a 7.5kW system.

    However, the cost of solar power changes depending on the size of the system required, your eligibility for solar incentives, the type of equipment used, and even on the province that you live in.

    This page explains how to accurately calculate the cost of solar power for your property in just 3 steps. You can read from top to bottom or jump to your preferred section by clicking on it below:

    Read Also: Do Prius Have Solar Panels

    Reduction In Energy Costs

    Youll save between $650 to $1,500 annually. Over a 25-year period, youll save between $15,000 to $40,000 in energy costs. Cost ranges vary by regional differences in the cost of electricity and how much sun youll get. Dont expect to save as much in a darker northern climate as you would in southern California, Florida or Hawaii.

    A great first step in determining which products are right for your home is to conduct a Home Energy Audit. A home auditor will do a detailed inspection of your usage and areas where you can improve to help you determine if you would benefit from a solar system. From there, a pro can help you to select the right location, size, mounts, and panels to maximize on savings.

    Although you may hesitate to spend the money on the most expensive types of panels and mounts, it is good to remember that you will save money on the other side with decreased electricity bills. It could be that what you spend up front will pay for itself very quickly in your reduced monthly bills.

    You can enhance your savings by selecting products with higher efficiencies and investing in track mounting. Track mounting will ensure that your system absorbs all the light it can, and high-quality panels will be able to capture and convert that light at a greater rate.

    Solar + Battery = Peace Of Mind

    Its simple math. When you add battery storage to your solar or wind, you make your home more prepared during an emergency or outage. Plus, if you join our new Smart Battery Pilot program, youll help add even more renewable energy to the grid.

    For many, solar panels make the most sense for generating power at your home. But in some cases, your property may be a good candidate for wind turbines or hydroelectric power.

    Most wind systems need a generator, inverter, tower and other small components. Of course, the most important thing they need is a location with an average wind speed above 10 mph!

    Also Check: Does California Require Solar Panels On New Homes

    Suntegra Tile And Shingle

    SunTegra offers its clients two solar products solar shingles and solar tiles. The former can be installed on top of your existing roof, while the latter serves as a replacement for concrete tiles. Since they dont offer a non-photovoltaic option, they are integrated with conventional shingles and tiles.

    An interesting feature on the Shingles is the air channels that are attached to the back of the panels to keep them cooler.

    This feature is unique to SunTegra and improves the efficiency of the shingles. Furthermore, theyre very low profile and are easy to integrate into your existing roof.

    Moreover, SunTegra panels have monocrystalline cells and a peak output of 100-110 watts. They come with a 25-year power warranty and a 10-year product warranty.

    See Related: What Are Solar Carports?

    Why You Should Expand Your Solar System

    Do SOLAR PANELS add VALUE to your Home?

    There are a few reasons homeowners may decide to expand their system after its installed. If any of these common reasons apply to you and your home, youre a good candidate for a solar upgrade.

    • Youd prefer several smaller installments.
      • Solar panels pay for themselves over time, so its sometimes easier to expand a system slowly to lessen the initial investment cost. In most cases, it makes sense to initially install a conservative system for financial or other reasons. Once your panels pay themselves off, youll be in a good financial position to invest in more panels.
    • Youve increased your electricity use. In many cases, you may see an increase in your electricity use after installing your solar panels. The thought of producing free electricity tends to make solar customers more relaxed about their energy use. If you start leaving your lights on more often, you may want to install more panels to account for the additional usage.
    • Youve expanded your home. If you add an extra room or two to your home or refinish a basement or garage, your electricity bill is likely to increase as well. Adding more solar panels can minimize the financial sting of your home expansion. Furthermore, additions often provide additional roof space for mounting another solar rack.

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