Installing solar panels on your home is an investment that will pay off in multiple ways. Installed on your roof or another location that receives direct sunlight, solar panels are an excellent way to promote a greener lifestyle and save energy. Although the most direct benefits are financial, there are other important advantages as well. Here are 7 of the major benefits that I have seen from solar panels installed on the roof of your home.
- You will save energy, and your electricity cost will go down significantly. During periods when your solar system generates more electricity than you use (essentially the times when you are receiving sunlight), you will sell electricity back to your provider if you have net metering.
- Solar panels add value to your home. Any buyer will take into consideration the value of the panels and the lower electricity cost. The knowledge that solar energy is “greener’ will only help encourage a purchaser.
- Your return on investment is probably better than you think. The upfront installation cost may seem high, but with tax credits and rebates that are available, a return on investment of around 10% is reasonable to expect. Bear in mind that this a highly reliable rate of return that will only get better in the future as electric rates rise. Don’t get fixated on payback. Think of solar panels as a long-term investment.
- Solar power is as close to an inexhaustible source of energy as exists. Only when the sun is depleted will it no longer be viable, and none of us need to worry about the sun running low on energy anytime soon.
- Solar energy generated at your home emits no greenhouse gases at all. Having solar panels will reduce your carbon footprint.
- Solar panels emit no other toxic pollutants either. The electricity you generate is green and clean.
- Solar panels are silent. Unlike gas or oil-powered generators, the only sound you will hear is a faint, pleasant-sounding hum from the transformer that converts DC from your solar panels to AC for your home electricity.
And here is a bonus benefit: you will get a good feeling every time you see your electric meter running backward, with the knowledge that you are sending electricity back to the grid and getting paid for it.
Nothing is perfect, including solar power, so here are a few considerations to help guide your decision about the installation of solar panels at your home. First, you need sunlight. Solar panels are not as effective in cloudy environments (although more UV light gets through the clouds than you might think). Second, direct sunlight is best. If you live in the northern hemisphere, a southern-facing roof exposure is ideal. Conversely, in the southern hemisphere, a northern exposure is best. Shade is also a negative. If your home is heavily shaded by trees or taller buildings, the solar power that you can generate will be limited. Your panels should be installed so that they receive the most direct sunlight possible.