Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Power
The sun is an extremely viable source of energy. With us earthlings just being able to collect a fraction of its energy, it still has the potential to meet all of our energy needs. Not to mention, harnessing the sun’s power with solar panels can make a remarkable difference on our planet. In this post, your favorite solar installation company (i.e., us), will be arming you with information regarding the pros and cons of going solar so you can make the best decision that aligns with the needs of you and your family.
If you’re interested in solar panels for your home, you’ll find a wide array of information available, especially on the internet. This can make the decision process even more overwhelming than it already is. We get it. So, we here at Sun Energy California have put together this information, from a homeowner’s perspective, to help ya out!
The argument for the average homeowner in the United States wanting to install solar is now better than it’s ever been because the benefits greatly outweigh the drawbacks. You’ve heard the bad, we’ve got the truth. Let’s take a closer look:
Advantages of Solar Energy
Solar Energy Reduces Your Electric Bill
Did you know that installing solar panels on your home can yield significant savings on your utility bills? A large part of why this is is because of Net Energy Metering (NEM). This program allows homes using solar energy to send their system’s unused electricity back to the utility company. The utility company then, in turn, pays the homeowner for that unused power in the form of credits that they can use when they need extra power in the future. Pretty sweet deal, huh? We think so!
Solar Energy is Insurance Against Rising Power Rates
It’s no surprise that electricity keeps getting more and more expensive. Over the past 10 years, energy prices have increased on an average of 2 cents a year (not cool). Unfortunately, the cost of electricity will continue to rise and our utility bills will continue to climb. However, there is no need to fear. When you invest in solar energy for your home, you’re producing your own power, so the chance of you having to pay for the electricity you pull from the energy company is extremely slim. This is especially true if you seek a reputable solar installation company with knowledgeable contractors, like Sun Energy California (*pats self on the back*). We’ve seen it many times where homeowners end up with either more panels than they need or not enough. This is because those companies don’t do their research into your usage, and their process of due diligence is not thorough enough – or they’re just simply trying to make a sale.
In retrospect, if your home uses solar energy, and you’re enrolled in Net Energy Metering, the rising cost of power can be looked at as a good thing in terms of the price of credits you receive. So, you’re saying net metering is saving us money whenever they raise the prices? Yes, that’s exactly what we’re saying. The silver lining, folks, it’s all about the silver lining.
Solar Energy Allows You to See Return on Your Investment
The money you get from NEM (Net Energy Metering) along with the solar tax incentives (26% for the year, 2020, y’all!), not to mention, the elimination of your electric bill, all add up and because of this, you can see the ROI on your solar panels in as little as four years (which is ridiculously awesome, if you ask us). Once your solar panels are paid off, sit back and relax, my friend, and start making the big bucks! You’ll then be generating free power for the lifespan of your system, which can be anywhere from 25-40 years. I mean, c’mon, that’s a no-brainer, you guys!
When You Invest in Solar Energy, You Gain Energy Independence
When we say energy independence, what we mean is that your home is no longer dependent on the power grid offered by the utility company. This allows you to take control of your power and where it’s coming from because you’re the one creating it. Oh, the sweet, sweet sound of freedom. Let it ring, I say!
Solar Energy is Now Cheaper Than Ever
Like we mentioned earlier, the electricity cost is rising. However, the cost of solar electricity is continuing to fall. Solar is now cheaper than it’s ever been. Renewable energy currently holds 17% of the electricity generation in the United States – and that’s mostly wind and hydro energy with solar power coming in hot. All we need is more people to join the revolution.
Solar Panels Do Add Value to Your Home
The popularity of solar panels is increasing and whether or not solar panels increase the value of a home is a question we get often here at Sun Energy California. The initial costs of going solar can be pretty intense if you’re considering purchasing the system outright. However, it’s important to remember that the benefits of going solar are tenfold when it comes to long-term investment. But, will solar panels increase your property value?
Fortunately, some studies show homes with solar panels are valued and sold at higher prices than similar homes without solar panels in the same areas. Here’s a 2019 Zillow Study that shows homes with solar energy sell for 4.1% more than homes that don’t. If you have a home valued at $400,000 (the average price in California is $450,000), that could mean a difference of $16,400! #NotTooShabby
Solar Energy is Environmentally Friendly
With solar power being a renewable source of energy, as you use it, it doesn’t deplete its source (the sun). This is what makes solar power renewable. Additionally, solar panels do not produce any greenhouse gas emissions! When we produce electricity from the sun using solar panels, nothing harmful is being released in the atmosphere. Winning! High fives all around!
Disadvantages of Solar Energy
Solar Panels are Large and Require Significant Space
It’s no surprise that solar panels aren’t particularly small. We’ve all seen these on roofs, or ground units in fields. Those suckers are around 5.4 feet by 3.25 feet. Most of the time, with residential solar panels, there is adequate roof space. However, when you look at large grid-scale solar installations, space can sometimes be a bit of an issue.
Because the power density of solar panels is significantly less than that of fossil fuels, you need a larger area of solar panels to produce the same amount of electricity you would get from those nasty coal plants. This is only if you exclude the amount of land that has to be mined to acquire fossil fuels, which destroys acres and acres of land. Gross!
Solar Energy is Considered an Intermittent Energy Source
Ok, ok, hear us out on this. Here are some reasons why some folks argue that solar power isn’t reliable or “intermittent”:
- The intensity of the sun is different based on location, time of day, and even time of year.
- Due to the lack of sunlight, solar panels do not generate power at night.
- Snow, clouds, and even dirt can have an impact on the amount of energy produced by your solar panels.
But, what they have failed to acknowledge is the fact that a backup battery is a solution. Batteries allow homeowners to store their solar power and draw energy from the battery when their solar panels are not producing energy. BOOM! Knowledge drop! Bye-bye, intermittency!
Investing in Solar Panels can be Expensive at First
If you’ve been looking into going solar, or currently have solar panels installed at your home, I’m sure you’ve heard people ask or say that they have a large upfront cost. The actual cost of the system varies state by state, along with the incentives you qualify for.
However, with Sun Energy California, there are some great financing options available that many of our customers take advantage of. Many of them qualify for a loan for zero dollars down, which allows them to save money on their electricity bill and also gain the benefits of going solar altogether. If you’re not sure if you’re going to qualify for something like this, reach out to us. Our solar advisors want to help you, not pressure you to go solar. And quite frankly, you’ll never know what you’ll qualify for if you don’t ask. You might end up being surprised.
Also, don’t forget there’s also the 26% solar tax credit if you install your panels in the year 2020. In 2021, this tax credit goes down to 22% only to completely disappear in 2022! (AHHHHHHHH, NOOOOOOOO!)
Solar Panels Manufacturing has an Environmental Impact
I know this is a huge bummercloud, but let us explain. The power that solar panels generate is completely free of any kind of emissions, however we here at Sun Energy California value honesty and being upfront with our customers. This means telling you the truth. And the truth is that there is some pollution associated with the manufacturing of solar panels.
It is important to note that the impact solar panels have on the environment is much less compared to the pollution associated with mining and burning of fossil fuels.
Should You Go Solar?
For most people, investing in solar energy makes a lot of sense when considering that the system pays for itself over time and is good for the environment. The fact that solar panels increase the value of your home is just icing on the cake. Getting solar panels for your residence is one of the smartest decisions a homeowner can make.
If you’re having trouble deciding on whether or not to go solar, we are here to provide you with the information you need to make the switch. Contact one of our Sun Energy Solar Advisors at 760.545.8466. We look forward to providing you with a free consultation and estimate as well as talking to you about how much you can save by investing in clean energy!
Ready To Go Solar?