Why Now Is The Best Time To Install Solar Panels On Your Home
If you believe solar panels are something you cant really afford, you may want to hear what Sean Hollister of the Verge has to say about solar panels. For Hollister, solar panels always seemed like one of those Earth-friendly options thats effectively a luxury good, much like a Tesla. But with a little research found out that he was wrong, frankly.
The cost of solar panels has never been cheaper, falling over 70 percent over the past decade. Plus, the US government will pay 30 percent of the total cost to install solar on your home. This is not a scam. Its a subsidy that is only valid until the end of this year. After 2019 the tax credit will shrink to 26 percent next year, 22 percent the year following, and disappears entirely for residential solar in 2022.
In short, theres never been a better time to go solar. Should you need a little more convincing, check out this personal story from Hollister himself.
Dont Miss A Second Of The Summer Sun
Spending time during the summer having your new solar electric system installed means you are guaranteed to be missing some of the energy of the summer sun. Getting your solar system designed and installed is a process and does not happen overnight . There is still plenty of energy to be harnessed from the winter sunshine, so if you can have your solar panels up and running in the winter, you know you arent missing any of the increased sunshine come spring and summer.
Top 4 Reasons Why Winter Is Best Time To Install Solar
1. Winter is the slow season for solar, so you can get a better deal
Although summer is the most popular time to install solar panels, winter is actually more ideal for most homeowners. Summer is the busiest time of year for most installers. During the slower winter months, some installers may offer seasonal deals to bring in new customers. Plus, by shopping during the slow season, youll have the added benefit of finding an installer who can devote more time to your project.
Its like buying a winter coat in Julyyoull always get a better deal!
Many other solar installers only provide a few cookie-cutter options to choose from. Meanwhile, we create a custom design for each customer, specifically tailored to reduce costs and maximize efficiency.
2. Installing solar panels doesnt happen overnight
For the average solar shopper, it can take anywhere from three to six months to get their solar panels up and running once they decide to go solar. If you wait until the beginning of the summer to start shopping, your solar energy system might not be up and running until the end of the year. When summer comes around and temperatures increase, so do electricity bills. Homeowners tend to use more A/C in the months of June, July and August. Getting prepared earlier in the year helps with cutting those costs. If you wait until you get your first summertime air conditioning bill, youre already too late.
3. Faster solar panel installation
Also Check: How Does The Solar Credit Work
Theres Never A Bad Time To Install Solar
While installing in low peak season is the perfect way to get ahead of high demand and receive great value for your dollar, theres isnt really a bad time to install solar. With average annual savings on your electricity bill upwards of 30%, you cant really go wrong. In fact, waiting for the right time to install solar is a false economy and just means youre missing out on real, proven savings in the meantime.
Remember, a solar system will, on average, give you 20+ years of service. You will ride the highs and lows of the seasons for many years, well beyond your payback period.
What season you install your system in is really negligible in the big picture. Take heart in knowing that regardless of WHEN you make the investment, you will be making a GOOD investment.
Ready to start slashing your electricity bills and take advantage of low peak season benefits?
Energy Matters makes going solar simple! Receive up to 3 FREE, obligation-free quotes from trusted local installers itll only take you a few minutes! Y
You can also call us on 1800 EMATTERS or email our friendly team for expert, obligation-free advice.
What Are Solar Batteries How Much Do They Cost
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
Also Check: Are Solar Panels Tax Deductible
Installers Actually Like Installing Solar Panels When Its Winter
If youve ever been up on a hot roof in the middle of the summer, youll understand why solar companies dont mind installing solar panels in cold weather. Lots of sunshine is great for solar power, but it can also result in uncomfortably hot conditions for installers working on your roof. As long as theres no snow or ice on your roof, your solar panels can be installed at any point in the year. Once your panels are online, all you need is a roof rake to clear them off after heavy snow.
Join the thousands of solar shoppers using the EnergySage Solar Marketplace today, and see why were the largest online comparison-shopping site for solar in the country. When installers compete for your business on EnergySage, you can save more than 20 percent on the cost of your system. By comparison-shopping for solar in the winter, youll find the best price for your home solar needs on your own timeline.
Note: This post contains affiliate links. We only link to products that we think are great.
Reasons Why Spring Is The Best Time To Install Solar Panels
If youâve been thinking about taking the plunge and investing in a solar panel system, you might have been holding out for the perfect time to get started. With spring well and truly here, it wonât take long for things to start heating up and for our air conditioners to get a serious workout. It might surprise you to know that spring is one of the best times of the year to install solar panels, as it can help us prepare for the hottest time of the year. Still need some convincing? Check out our top four reasons below!
Read Also: How Big Does My Solar System Need To Be
Waiting Means Missing Out On Thousands Of Dollars In Potential Savings
Waiting to install solar panels means waiting to save on your energy bill, and continuing to pay more for that energy as prices rise.
- Over the last decade, electricity prices have increased about 2.2% per year in the U.S. .
- In 2016, the average American households energy bill was $112.59 per month, or about $1,350 annually .
- If you were to install a solar photovoltaic system that generated enough power to offset this bill entirely, you would be saving $1,350 in year one. With a 2.2% increase each year, your savings in year two grow to $1,380 and would reach $1,500 in annual savings in less than 5 years.
Remember, the total cost savings from waiting three years to go solar came out to $900. This figure would be eclipsed in year one by getting solar panels for your house now. Savings would more than triple by year three and would only continue to grow with time, as you are avoiding paying for the rising cost of energy. And that is a good reason to get solar panels for your home right now.
The Best Time To Buy Solar Panels In 2021
Technically, theres no one right answer to when someone should buy solar panels. The sooner you can get your consultation for solar panels to be installed onto your home, the sooner the installation will be finished, and then youll be able to save more money on your energy bills now versus later.
Installing solar panels can take some time, so the choice you make on when to install them doesnt really matter in the grand scheme of things. However, there are seasons when installing solar panels can be better, for various reasons.
In this article, were going to be taking a deep dive into when you should install solar panels and some misconceptions about solar panel installations.
Property Characteristics And Necessary Upgrades
Every property is unique when it comes to roofing and electrical systems. Many homes are ready for a solar panel system as-is however, occasionally there are upgrades you need to make to your home prior to installing solar. The more common upgrades include re-roofing, upgrading your electric panel, or reinforcing your roof to ensure it can withstand the additional weight of solar equipment. If upgrades are necessary prior to installation, it can mean further delaying a solar panel installation. Fortunately, many of these upgrades can occur simultaneously to other steps of the going solar process.
Best Time To Use Solar Electricity
While our generally sunny weather and clear skies means that it makes good sense to install solar panels for your home, you still need to be making the most of your solar by learning when the best time to use your solar electricity is.
The most important factors that determine when its right to use your solar energy will depend on where your solar PV system is installed on your roof and where in Australia you live.
Location of solar panels on your roof
- Solar Panels on Eastern RoofIf your solar panels are installed on your eastern roof, it makes sense to use the majority of your solar electricity in the morning. To ensure you make the most of your solar electricity, we recommend using appliances like the dishwasher or washing machine as soon as you get up or turning them on just before you head out the door for the day.
- Solar Panels on Western RoofIf your solar panels have been installed on your homes western roof, we recommend using your solar electricity in the afternoon where possible. Installing panels on a homes western roof is the perfect choice for those who either finish work early or those with a large family who come home from school and use multiple appliances like your TV, computers and air conditioner at once.
If you live in Western Australia
What to remember about solar electricity usage
Recommended Reading: What’s Bad About Solar Energy
Review Your Electric Bill
Solar panels generate their own power and can therefore greatly offset your monthly electricity bill, if not eliminate it. The higher your bill, the more likely you’ll benefit from switching. But you should note that electricity rates and usage the main charges on your statement are volatile.
“If a utilitys electricity prices fluctuate, so could the amount of savings,” says Garrett Nilsen, deputy director for the U.S. Department of Energy’s solar energy technologies office. “Similarly, if energy consumption changes, the amount of savings can also vary.”
Visit the EIA website to view the most recent prices per state.
Weather Condition And Solar Panel Output
Weather conditions that reduce direct sunlight are clouds, rain and snow. These are detrimental to solar power production.
In such conditions, solar panels will produce only about half the energy that they would produce with direct sunlight.
Even during bad weather conditions, electricity generation happens. solar panels will still be absorbing, converting, and providing energy.
Clouds do let some sunlight through them, but with low efficiency. Powerproduction depends on the thickness of the cloud cover.
Rain doesnt directly affect power production. But the heavy cloud that accompanies rain will have an impact on electricity generation.
With the darkening of sky, clouds block sunlight. It lowers system output by 40-90%. The positive aspect of rain and snow is that both cleans the panels.
Snow prevents the panels from getting too hot and losing efficiency. Light snow doesnt affect power production as the sunlight can pass through light dusting of snow.
During cold weather, there is more electron activity, which allows the solar panels to absorb more sunlight.
Solar panels are installed in an angle that it can easily shed off snow. A heavy accumulation of snow would block sunlight and greatly reduce power production.
Indirect sunlight happens when sunlight is reflected off a surface like clouds or snow. Even in indirect sunlight photons from sun will reach the solar panels. The amount of heat and sunlight that reaches the panel will be lesser.
Recommended Reading: Is There A Government Scheme For Free Solar Panels
Installing Your Solar Panels
Now that all the equipment is present, the next step is to get up your solar panels. Depending on how many you have and where they are located, this could take anywhere from half a day up to two days. A single panel installation should take between one to three hours, while multiple panels can require half a day or more.
Is Summer A Better Time To Install Solar Panels
Francisco CastroJune 7, 20198320
The way solar energy works is simple: the solar panels turn sunlight into electricity, wires on the panel run to an inverter, which turns that DC power into AC that your appliances can use.
Thus, sunnier days will generate more electricity than cloudy ones.
So, does this mean that summer is a better time to install solar panels?
Advantages of a summer solar installation
In actuality, any time of the year is favorable for the installation of a home solar energy system. But there are some advantages to putting a domestic solar power system at this time of the year.
For one, youll probably see a lot more of these projects going up now and in the latter half of this year from homeowners trying to take full advantage of the 30% federal Solar Investment Tax Credit before it goes down to 26% next year, and 22% in 2021 before going away for good. Commercial projects will still get a 10% credit after that.
Also, from permits to required inspections, the timeline for the installation of solar panels can easily extend into weeks or even months during the peak installation seasons. It takes an average of 35 days from the moment you sign a contract with a solar installer company before the photovoltaic modules go up on your roof and you get permission from your utility company to turn them on. That means if you wait until summer to start the process, you might not have functioning solar panels on your roof until summer is nearly over.
Read Also: What Is A Solar Heated Pool
The Newer The Roof The Better
Speaking of time, your roof has a finite amount of it. The lifespan of a roof can extend between 20 and 50 years depending on its composition. The majority of roofs in Los Angeles are made of asphalt shingles. While this type of roof is cost-effective, it only offers about 20 years of life. Most forms of tile, another common Southern California roof choice, give you a much longer life of 50 years.
Solar panels can last an estimated 25 to 40 years and possibly even longer! Therefore, if your roof only has about five years left in it, it doesnt really make sense to install solar panels when youll need to take the whole system down again in a few years. Instead, the best time to invest in solar panels in Los Angeles is when your roof is new or has a decade or more of life left.
Theres Nowhere Else To Put Solar Panels
The roof is the most common place to put solar panels but its not the only place they can go.
You will find homeowners placing solar panels in other places, such as in their backyard or on secondary structure on their property.
If both of the circumstances below apply to you, then youre out of luck.
- Ground-mounting isnt possible for you: Ground-mounted solar refers to solar panels installed on the ground using special mounts to angle them towards the sun. While this may be an option for farms and ranches, it is rarely feasible in cities and suburbs where there is less open space to work with.
- No other structure available: The last option to consider are buildings like carports or sheds, or backyard structures like gazebos, pergolas and patio covers. If you dont have any of these, or they lack suitable surface areas, it means that youre going to hold off on solar panels for the time being.