Higher Home Resale Value
Rooftop solar panels can increase your homes resale value with a return on investment that is higher than many other types of home improvements. According to Zillow, solar panels boost the selling price of a home by 4.1%.
Additionally, a 15-year, eight-state study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory showed a home price premium between 0.78% and 1.05% per kilowatt of solar.
Pros & Cons Of Solar Energy
Posted by Jared Mullane20/05/2021
Solar to a home is veggie garden to a human. Wait, what? Were basically saying its a way to manage your own sustenance. In the case of solar specifically, were talking about a way to generate energy that you can then use to power all the appliances and gadgets around your house. But whilst starting a veggie patch might just need you to pop down to Bunnings, solar panels require a bit more thought. Were going to break this down in a classic pros and cons battle to help you decide whether theyre right for you.
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Cons Of Solar Panels For Home
Now that weve covered the most important PROs of solar panels, lets go through some of the reasons homeowners are hesitant to making the switch to solar panels.
Solar panels may not be optimal for your roof
The best place for solar panels to be installed is on your roof where your house gets the most amount of sunlight as possible. However, this may be an issue if your roof doesnt have enough space. It may also be difficult to install solar panels on a roof with certain roofing materials like cedar or slate tiles, or roofs with additions like skylights or a rooftop deck.
Sunlight needed to power your panels can also be obstructed by trees, for example, and you may not have the option of removing these obstacles. In this case, solar panels may not be the right fit for your home. Its best to speak with a Solar Specialist to find out if solar panels are a good option for your roof.
Initial cost may seem like an obstacle
Some people may be intimidated by the initial investment needed to switch to solar energy for your home. You will need cash up-front or access to financing options in order to get your system in the first place. However, what makes this worth it is not only the savings youll see in the long-term, but also savings youll see on your monthly electric bill in the first month of your system running. And by the way, Sunpro Solar also offers 100% financing to make this an even easier decision!
Source: GreenTech Media
You need sunshine!
They Require The Right Roof
Solar panels require your roof to be south-facing, at a 30-45 degree angle, and unobstructed by shade. If your roof doesnt fit the criteria, then you might struggle to set up an effective solar PV system.
Theres a lot you can do to optimise your roof conditions, including buying high-efficiency solar panels , cutting back trees , and using tilted racks .
The Initial Cost Is High
While the reduced electricity bills resulting from installing solar panels will eventually offset their cost, the initial outlay can be more than $20,000 which is a sizable investment that not everybody can afford.
Additionally, if you have devices that run off a direct current hooked up to alternating current sources, youll also need a transformer however, transformers arent 100% efficient, so the cost to operate an A.C. source will be higher than a D.C. source.
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Solar Power Is Difficult To Diy
The Do-It-Yourself approach to home improvement has become a popular option among people who want to cut costs and work with their hands. Since buying and installing solar panels has become easier in recent years, its become one of the new DIY trends. However, many home improvement experts counsel people not to perform DIY solar panel installations:
- Wiring your system requires specialized training and electrical know-how
- A tricky roofline requires special panel layouts and equipment, which increases the difficulty of a DIY project
- Aligning your panels to maximize your energy generation can require advanced modeling and design work
- Installation requires permitting and approvals from your Authority Having Jurisdiction that can be complex to request and schedule
- Most homeowners dont own the necessary safety equipment to work on a roof without risk of injury
Though the internet has lots of information about how to DIY a solar power installation, you may want to reconsider such a project, even if you think you have the skills. You and your buddies probably dont have the experience to match the quality work produced by well-trained and experienced professionals, especially if you want your solar power system to work reliably for 25 years or longer. Should you make any mistake during the installation process, it may be more costly than the money you would have saved.
Power Can Be Stored And Used At Night
Some all-in-one systems come with solar batteries included like enphase. These solar systems let you store power you generate during the day and use it at night instead.
This would benefit homeowners that use a majority of power at night. Similar to commercial businesses like supermarkets or schools.
When you store power you become independent from the grid. Rather than buy energy, you can use the energy that has been stored.
This could provide even further savings for homeowners. Its best invested with high end solar panels to see the full benefits of solar battery storage.
High end solar panels tend to have a higher performance and generate more energy, meaning you can store more power quicker.
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Pro Can Improve Property Value
Having a fully operational solar energy system installed can add value to your property. Much will depend on the area, property type and potential buyers, but you can add value by offering energy independence alongside the other features your property offers.
As society shifts towards renewables, having a home with everything already installed is a significant benefit. A benefit you may be able to charge a little more for.
Even if your property isnt worth more, it should be more attractive to buyers interested in green energy.
Solar Panel Installations Can Be Expensive
As weve mentioned in a previous blog, investing in home solar panels is a bit like buying a car. Rooftop solar panels are a sizable investment. But, if you do your research, test drive a few, and make a smart and informed decision, your investment will provide great returns for many years.
However, for some, the end result might not be worth the investment of time and money, which is totally understandable. Even with the reduced 26% investment tax credit credit, the average price a solar installer will charge for a 10 kWh system in 2021 is about $20,000.10
This is why we offer solar electricity plans for people who still want to benefit from going solar but cant afford the initial cost of installing panels.
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They Contain Toxic Materials
Despite their air-cleaning qualities, solar panels are made with a concoction of toxic materials. Although these chemicals wont affect your home, the manufacture and waste stages of a panels life can release a lot of harmful chemicals into the atmosphere.
However, a study published by Nature Energy showed that the global environmental impact of creating solar panels is vastly outweighed by the environmental benefits of using them. Only 4% of the energy generated by a solar panel is offset by the energy required to create it making solar power one of the worlds cleanest renewable energies.
Upfront Installation Costs Are High
Installing solar panels is becoming more affordable. However, it remains a significant expense: It costs an average of $18,000 to install a 6kW grid-tied solar system. The cost may be lower or greater depending on energy demands, local reimbursements and the amount of sunlight. Still, theres no way around it: Thats pricey. If you dont plan to stay in the home long-term, it may not make sense to invest in solar panels.
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It Takes Up A Lot Of Space
Standard solar panels measure 39 wide by either 66 to 72 tall .
To offset the national average of 897 kWh of electricity per month, youd need at least 24 panels. In an 8×3 configuration, that system will be 26 feet wide by 44 feet tall. Thats going to take up a lot of room on your roof or in your yard.
Most people opt for a roof mount because it takes advantage of space that would otherwise go unused. If you need to design around odd angles and obstructions, you can always split the panels into sub-arrays, like our customer Luis did when he built his system:
Solar Reduces Carbon Emissions
Solar is a clean, renewable source of energy that can help reduce carbon dioxide emissions and lower our impact on the natural environment. Unlike traditional fossil fuels like coal and oil, solar energy does not lead directly to pollutants being released into the atmosphere and water supply. Even compared to nuclear energy, solar comes out on top in terms of being a more environmentally friendly solution.
Read Also: How To Convert Your Home To Solar Energy
Solar Power Works In Many Climates
If you live in a relatively cold area or one with harsh winters, electricity is essential for heating the home. You may be skeptical of solar panels’ efficacy in such environments, as shorter days, increased cloud cover, and snow can reduce sun exposure, and thus, electricity production.
However, modern solar panel companies go the extra mile to ensure that solar panels can meet your energy needs, regardless of the conditions. The panels can endure bad weather, and the technology is designed to produce the maximum amount of electricity with a minimal amount of sun exposure.
Solar power professionals use complex modeling strategies to determine the amount of solar energy your roof receives based on local climate conditions. The goal is to deliver a custom solar power solution that addresses your specific needs.
While solar panels cannot produce electricity when covered with snow, its less of a hindrance than youd imagine. Since panels absorb heat from the sun, the snow melts faster than it does on the ground and considering the panels are mounted in a slanting position, it slides off easily.
Despite those supposed obstacles to producing electricity in winter, solar panels are actually more effective when it’s cold. When temperatures are low, the photovoltaic components in the solar panel convert sunlight to electricity more efficiently. In addition, they also catch the sunlight reflecting from snow, offsetting some of the reduced sun exposure.
Reduce The Cost Of Your Energy Bill
The most widely known advantage of solar panels is that they will reduce the cost of your electricity bills.
Due to the suns energy being renewable and free it means that you will not be paying for the energy you generate through your solar panels.
There are endless benefits that come from having spare cash each month to spend on your family or other things. Saving money is one of the biggest advantages of solar.
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Con #: Energy Storage Is Expensive
If you want to store the electricity you produce for later use, youll need a battery storage system and that doesnt come cheap. The Tesla Powerwall 2 costs $5,500 and stores enough electricity for an average-sized home to continue functioning for 12 to 24 hours. Other battery options sport a range of prices, but none could be considered cheap. The sonnenBatterie costs just under $10k.
Of course, if youre connected to the grid the high cost of energy storage isnt a huge issue. If you need electricity after the sky goes dark and your solar installation stops producing energy, you simply pull electricity from the utility grid.
Even if you are connected to the grid, during peak times, electricity rates are so high in some areas that homeowners are finding energy storage -even with its high price cheaper than purchasing electricity from the utility during those peak times .
The homeowners simply charge their batteries during the day, then use energy from their batteries instead of the utility during those times of high prices. Pretty cool, right?
Make The Transition To Solar Energy Today
There are pros and cons to solar energy, but if this article has sparked your interest, you can check out our 6-step guide that will help you find the best solar panels for your home. We cover everything from roof suitability, solar panel type, cost, how to save with solar panels, and maintenance.
Has this sparked your interest in solar energy? We can help you find your best deal! Simply fill in the contact form at the top of this page and we will get back to you with up to 4 quotes from our professional installers. Take a minute to complete the form and save hours of research! Our service is totally free and non-binding!
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Some Solar Panels Use Rare Earth Metals
The name rare earth metals is a bit misleading these elements are actually in ample supply. However, its the extracting of these elements for use in wind turbines and solar cells that has negative impacts on the environment and the humans that mine them.12
Additionally, these rare earth elements carry a political weight to them. From 2014 to 2017, China supplied the U.S. with 80% of its rare earths imports.14 These materials, which are critical to the creation of most modern technology, have the potential to play a giant role in shaping economies around the world.
Luckily, leading technology companies, such as Apple, are exploring methods to recycle these rare earth elements to maintain a steady supply, which keeps costs from inflating because of ever-increasing demand.15
Should You Install Solar Panels
The pros of solar energy greatly outweigh the cons. The cost to install solar is now cheaper than ever, the solar tax credit just received a two year extension, and the price of electricity is only going to continue to rise. The sooner you make the switch to solar, the sooner you can start saving.
Use our solar calculator to find out how much solar can save you.
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Types Of Solar Panels: Pros And Cons
- Dickinson College
- Arcadia University
- University of Tennessee
Treehugger / Ellen Lindner
There are three main types of solar panels commercially available: monocrystalline solar panels, polycrystalline solar panels, and thin-film solar panels. There are also several other promising technologies currently in development, including bifacial panels, organic solar cells, concentrator photovoltaics, and even nano-scale innovations like quantum dots.
Each of the different types of solar panels has a unique set of advantages and disadvantages that consumers should consider when choosing a solar panel system.
|Pros and Cons of the Three Major Types of Solar Panels|
|Monocrystalline Solar Panels|
|As little as 21.4 g CO2-eq/kWh, depending on type|
Tax Advantages Of Solar Energy
In many countries, there are also significant tax benefits related to the installation of renewable energy devices.
Thus, in those countries, there is an additional financial incentive to switch from conventional to solar energy, especially if you own a house and the installation of solar panels is quite convenient and storage-efficient due to that.
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Solar Panel Leases & Power Purchase Agreements
Often referred to as a power purchase agreement, the concept of leased solar panels first became fashionable about fifteen years ago, essentially as a fast way for solar installation companies to close sales as swiftly as possible in California.
The high-pressure solar lease marketing and sales tactic rapidly became successful primarily because leasing often did not require a cash down payment , nor did leasing involve tying up assets into a home mortgage loan.
Disadvantages Of Solar Power
Disadvantage #1 – Intermittency
Solar panels only operate when its atleast somewhat sunny .
This means solar modules dont operate atnight, and they produce less energy when it is cloudy or when the panels are covered insnow. All of these factors lead people to believe that solar doesnt workwhich could not be further from the truth.
Yes, they are factors which affect theoverall system but there are mitigation strategies to this. Many jurisdictions utilize net billing ornet metering. Alberta, Saskatchewan,NWT, and many other provinces in Canada all use such a system.
Net Billing means the energy retailer willmonitor how much solar energy you import vs export and credit youaccordingly.
If your solar power system produces moreenergy than you can use in the summer, you will build up a credit and draw fromit during times when it is not sunny . This is the keyreason why solar energy systems are still viable even though we have long, darkwinters.
On a small scale net billing works fine toalleviate distribution stresses, but if renewable energy is expected togenerate 100% of the demand of a province, then the intermittency becomes anissue. This is where energy storage comes into play.
Economically utilizing energy storage systems is going to be a major hurdle in the coming decade. To combat the intermittency of the sun, wemust ensure that we can store excess energy while we have it, and draw from itwhen we need it most.
Disadvantage #2 – Aesthetic
Disadvantage #3 – Cost
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