Of all the forms of renewable energy making their way into our daily lives, solar panels are the most popular and accessible. What makes them so exciting, and how good of an investment are they? Here are some pros and cons of solar panels for your home.
Let’s look at the positives surrounding solar panels first. They’re popular for a reason, so let’s find out what that reason is.
Reduced (Or Eliminated) Energy Bills
Depending on your location, you could save up to $30,000 on energy bills in 20 years. Many people produce so much energy with their solar panels that their energy bills are eliminated. And if your panels make more energy than your home uses, you can sell the energy back to the grid.
Smaller Carbon Footprint
It’s no secret that renewable energy is much better for the planet than the burning of fossil fuels. An average home in the US produces almost 15,000 pounds of CO2 every year. Solar panels help reduce this number by more than 3,000 pounds per household annually.
Solar panels are built and installed to require very little maintenance, and most systems are rated to last for at least 20 years. If you do go solar, the installer you choose will explain the maintenance requirements.
Any new technology is sure to have some drawbacks, and solar power is no exception.
High Initial Cost
The cost of installation may make you gasp. Most people see a grand total of up to $20,000. While you’re likely to make that money back in savings, it certainly is a shocking down payment.
If you live in a cloudy area or trees shade your roof, solar panels might not make much sense for you. Your energy savings are entirely dependent on the sun, and weather can be unpredictable.
For people unsure whether they’ll stay in their home for the next 30 years, solar panels may be a questionable decision. They increase the value of your home, but you may not be around long enough to experience the savings on energy.
Now that you understand the pros and cons of solar panels for your home, decide for yourself whether they make sense for your situation. If you live in a sunny area, are planning to stay there, and can afford them, solar panels are an excellent choice.