Have you been thinking about going solar, but you’ve heard so many mixed messages that you just aren’t sure?
Yes, you want to save money on your energy bill by installing solar panels on your roof, but you’ve heard about astronomical buy-in costs. Or are you worried that the community in which you live doesn’t get enough sunlight to power your home’s daily use? Have you heard other myths about solar that are causing you to hesitate about making the jump?
Well, let us bust through some common myths when it comes to going solar.
Myth 1: Solar is too expensive
At one point, the buy-in costs were prohibitive for most, but not so much today. The cost of solar panels has become very affordable in recent years. The Solar Energy Industries Association says the cost of owning a solar panel system and the price per kilowatt has been reduced by over 70% since 2009. Can your traditional power companies claim the same? Certainly not. Upfront costs can be handled through low-cost financing, but you have to look at installing solar panels as an investment. The prices vary based on location as well as the size of the installation. Also, we estimate that you will see a return on investment within 5-7 years as your electric bill decreases significantly.
Myth 2: Reselling your home will be harder with solar panels
Studies show that adding solar panels will, in fact, increase the value of your home in most cases and almost always means your home will be sold faster. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory estimates that homes with solar panels sell 20% faster than homes without them and for 17% more profit.
Myth 3: Going solar means you are off the grid
Going solar allows you to become less reliant on the grid, but most solar panel installations are still tied to the grid. Depending on the battery you buy with your system and provider, you may have 10-15 hours of backup if the grid is down. But when you have solar panels, your system allows you to use the power generated from the sun during the day, and you can draw from the grid once the sun goes down. And even better, when you generate more energy than needed, you can sell your excess energy to the grid for credits on your energy bill. When you generate more electricity than you use during a given month, you can turn those net metering credits toward future bills.
Myth 4: Solar panels won’t work in the winter
Without question, sunshine is necessary to energize your solar panels. If you live in a cold-weather state that tends to have snowstorms, then you will generate less solar power during the winter months because you have fewer sunlight hours to work with. But you will still generate enough electricity through your solar panels to still realize savings on your energy bill during the winter months. According to EnergySage, your solar panels actually perform more efficiently when the sun is shining during the winter months due to the cold temperatures. In fact, if there is snow on the ground, the white snow can reflect light and help improve solar performance. Winter will only hurt solar production if the panels are completely covered with snow.
Myth 5: Solar panels will damage your roof
One of the major sticking points to installing rooftop solar is the concern that it could damage the roof. According to experts, roof damage from solar installations is infrequent. If you have an older roof, the installation company may require replacing the roof before the installation. Most solar installations will require holes in the roof to affix the racking, but sealants at these penetration sites will prevent roof leaks. But any reputable solar installer will provide you with a warranty on the workmanship, which usually runs from 5 to 25 years, to give you protection should anything go wrong. The key is working with a qualified and licensed solar installer like Kuubix Energy.
Myth 6: The government will provide you with free solar panels
If you see any such wording, know that it’s scam advertising. The government is not giving away free solar panels. But while the government isn’t in the free solar panel business, you can subsidize your upfront costs through various solar incentives. The federal investment tax credit (ITC) allows you to claim 26 percent of the cost of your solar installation as a credit towards your federal tax liabilities. And depending on your location, your state or local government may also provide additional solar incentives such as tax credits, rebates, or performance-based incentives (PBIs).
Myth 7: Installing solar is complicated and requires a lot of maintenance
Solar panel installation is a straightforward process when using a quality company like Kuubix Energy. In most cases, your system is connected to the utility grid, making solar panels easier to maintain. Your solar panels will just need to be cleaned with water to remove dust, debris, or snow that may accumulate. Solar panels are made to withstand rough weather, including snow, hail, and heavy winds. The only extra maintenance that could come into play is that you may have to clean your panels more often if your system is battery-based instead of being connected to the utility grid.
Myth 8: Solar panels won’t last long
Most modern panels have been designed to be tough and durable. The electricity-generating components are protected by thick, industrial-grade glass and are built to last for decades. Check with your solar installation company to see what type of warranty is offered on your panels.
Myth 9: Solar panels can be bad for the environment after their lifetime has expired
Solar panels are manufactured for a maximum lifetime of 25 years. Then they can be recycled. But ultimately, this depends on the manufacturer you use to install your solar panel system.
Myth 10: I can’t use solar if I don’t own my home
Community solar programs are becoming more popular and make it possible for people who rent homes or apartments to take advantage of solar. They make it possible for renters to contribute to a shared solar array. By buying into an array, renters get the benefits of solar power without committing to a static, home-based solar system.