Solar Panels For Your Homes: Where To Start

Posted On Monday, 01 February 2021 21:27

A home provides peace and security. Nothing feels safer than snuggling up in bed, turning the heat up a bit, and enjoying some hot cocoa while watching your favorite movie. While those activities may sound relaxing, you might have no idea how much they can affect your electricity bill if done regularly.

Anything that you plug into your outlet will use electricity. While you may want to cut your electric bill to save money, some things are essential for your everyday use, like brewing a hot coffee, charging your phone, turning on your lights, and plugging in your computer or laptop while you work from home, to name a few.  

As you've contemplated that you can’t avoid using electricity, you might be looking for ways to save money from using one. The greatest solution?  Use solar panels for your home, like the ones offered by https://www.smartsolarenergyco.com/solar-panels-bend-oregon/.  

What Are Solar Panels?  

Solar panels use the sun as their source of energy, which is then converted into electricity with the help of a solar inverter. Most households usually place their panels on their roof or an open area where the spot is getting plenty of sunlight. Depending on the house and solar panel size, solar panels can power the entire home during the day. 

You can use multiple solar panels for a more energy-saving feature; the more solar panels you have, the more energy they can capture. Fortunately, buying solar panels is easy because of solar incentives being offered in many US states, in addition to the existing federal solar tax credit. While adding more panels can be expensive, you can lessen the total cost while still enjoying the added benefits for your house and the whole family by qualifying for solar incentives. Learn more about it here:

Benefits Of Solar Panel 

Having solar panels installed at home has been a rising trend nowadays as it significantly helps people with numerous things in their household. If you're living in an area where there's a generous amount of sun, solar panels can let you enjoy the following benefits:

Renewable Energy Source 

The most important benefit of using solar energy is that it's renewable. As long as the sun is up and is giving out light during the day, you'll never run out of energy for your household. 

Unlike other energy sources, they might run out soon, especially with the commercial electric companies. With solar panels, you can continue to have electricity in your home even if there's a shortage of electricity in your area.  

Lower Electricity Bills 

When you're using solar panels as the primary energy source in your household, expect that your electricity bill will reduce to a much affordable cost. However, you should note that the amount of money you'll be saving will depend on the size of the solar panels you're going to install in your home. If you have a large household and use a few panels only, don't expect that you'll be seeing noticeable changes in your bill, especially if you're a heavy user of electricity.  

To allow your household to fully utilize solar energy and see changes in your electricity bill, you should have enough panels to cover your electricity consumption during the day. If you're using a single panel, but you use your computer all day with the HVAC on 24/7, don't expect that you'll see a significant number of changes in your electric bill.  

You can save a lot more if you purchase solar batteries to store the extra energy your panels have gathered within the day. This way, you can have a continuous supply of free energy in your household, even at night. This will gradually help decrease your energy bill.  

Low Maintenance Cost 

If you're looking for the ultimate deal-breaker, you should know that solar panels don't require too much maintenance, which allows you to save plenty of money in the long run.  

Since the solar panels are just sitting on the top of your roof, you only need to clean them a couple of times every year to keep their condition in the perfect shape. You'll only be needing to replace your inverter every five to ten years as it's the only moving part as they're responsible for converting your solar energy to electricity in your household.  

Moreover, most solar panel manufacturers provide a 20 to 25 years of warranty that should help keep your panels in pristine condition for two decades of usage. Just ensure that you're purchasing from a reliable and trusted company.  

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What You Should Know Before Purchasing Solar Panels 

As you're interested in using solar energy for your household, you might be in a hurry to purchase one right away as you can't wait to save on your energy bill and are tired of sudden electricity loss at random times during the day. But, before you head out to a store immediately, here are the things that you should know about your household for you to be able to purchase the right solar panels:

The Energy That You Use 

You first need to verify how much energy your household consumes within a day. This can depend on the number of people living in your house and certain habits.

It’s important to note that just because you're a family of three, you'll be needing a smaller panel size for your home. If you consume electricity heavily, you might want to consider using a bigger solar panel, which allows you to save on your utility bills.  

Roof Structure 

You need to assess first if you have enough surface area to place your solar panels. If you don't have a big yard or enough land space, you should consider placing your solar panels on your roof, like everyone else. But, before you decide to put them on your roof, you should first identify if your roof's structure can support the size of the solar panel.  

Amount Of Sunlight

Apart from the structure of your roof, you should also consider if your roof is getting enough sunlight during the day so you could fully utilize the use of solar panels. The more sunshine your roof is getting, the more energy that you'll be able to have.

Moreover, if you have a shaded roof, you may not be able to enjoy the full advantage of having solar panels in your home as you're only producing a small amount of energy. With that, you might want to look at other energy source alternatives.  

Return On Investment  

You should know that the return on investment with solar panels will take a long time and won't happen immediately. Depending on your solar panel's size and your everyday energy consumption, it'll take years before you achieve it.  

For a quicker investment return, purchasing bigger solar panels is more cost-effective, especially if you pair them with a solar battery to allow your household to have continuous solar energy even at night.  

Buying Guide  

Now that you're already aware of the benefits of what solar panels have to offer, you may now be thinking of purchasing and installing one for your home. But, before you head out and buy one right away, check these guidelines first to ensure that you're getting yourself the right one:  

Recommendations

If you know of someone who uses solar panels for their home, you should ask for their recommendations regarding where they've purchased theirs and if they're providing the quality and support they need. This way, you can guarantee that you're purchasing high-quality solar panels.  

Warranty  

With every solar panel you purchase, you should first confirm how many years of warranty it offers. Most reputable solar panel companies can provide at least 25 years of security for your purchase. This way, you can guarantee that your panels will last you for a long time and will have someone to help you if any issues occur.  

The company needs to be operating if you want to maximize warranty features. So, it's ideal that you purchase from stores that are registered and legal.

Mounting 

You need to ensure that the solar panel mounting you're going to purchase can adhere to your area's intense natural weather occurrences. For example, if you're living in a place that’s prone to cyclones, you need to confirm if the mounting brackets are cyclone-rated to guarantee that they’ll stay on their surface despite the strong winds.  

Solar Inverter’s Efficiency 

The solar inverter is responsible for converting solar energy into electricity. When purchasing solar inverters, you should know that they're not all equal. Inverter efficiency will define the amount of time it takes to convert energy into useful electricity. When choosing a solar inverter, you should try to look for a higher efficiency rate so that less electricity will be put to waste during the conversion.

Quotations 

One of the best ways to save money when buying solar panels is through gathering quotations from different companies. You can search on the Internet for various suppliers that garnered great reviews, give them a call, and then ask for their quotations.

While some may offer lower prices, you need to make sure that they’re using high-quality materials. If the price is ridiculously cheap, you need to be cautious as the solar panels they’re offering might only last you a couple of years.

Solar Panel Cleaning And Maintenance Tips

Solar panels are a big investment, and because they bring benefits to your home, you should know how to ensure that they last for as long as possible. Below are a few tips to ponder when it comes to maintaining and cleaning your solar panels.

Solar Panel Cleaning

• Clean solar panels when they’re wet or moist so you can easily wipe off dirt or residue that’s stuck in them.
• Solar panels are costly to repair, so don’t use harsh materials when cleaning them.
• Use biodegradable soap or soft rag to avoid scratching the glass.
• Take proper care if you must get on your roof as it becomes slippery once you begin cleaning.
• Use a harness or safety ropes for support when getting on the roof to clean your solar panels to avoid sliding off when you get down.
• To ensure the safety of everyone, including yourself, clean the panels using a long-handled wiper while you’re standing on the ground.
• Solar panels can absorb sunlight better when they’re free of residue, so always watch out for dirt to ensure that it doesn’t build up.
• Get solar panel cleaning kits as they come in very handy. You’ll find a brush with a longer handle, a wiper, and a biodegradable soap inside most of them.
• Schedule an appointment with a solar panel cleaning company if you don’t have the time to clean your solar panels yourself. Another option is to install automated cleaners; they work like sprinkler systems.

So, for those asking if solar panels need cleaning, yes, they do. You may be required to do it weekly or monthly, depending on the type you have.

Solar Panel Maintenance

• Keep your solar panels out of the shade to ensure that they’re absorbing enough sunlight for efficient energy production.
• Make sure that the inverters of your solar panels are always flashing green lights. You’re losing money but not compensating for your electricity use anymore if they’re not.
• Write down how much energy your solar panels are producing consistently every day. Also, take note of dates that are very cloudy. Documenting your panels’ day-to-day performance can help improve maintenance.
• Monitor systems to see how much carbon dioxide you’re emitting into the atmosphere and how much you’re benefitting the environment.

Luckily, there’s not much maintenance to do when you own solar panels because they have no moving parts that could rust or break down.

Aside from the tips above, consulting your solar manufacturer for some manufacturer-specific cleaning and maintenance advice is also a good move.

Conclusion 

Solar panels provide plenty of benefits in one's home. Apart from helping save the environment by reducing your carbon footprint, you' may also gradually reduce your electricity bills, depending on the size of the panels.

Furthermore, if you're living in an area where the sun is generous, having solar panels is a wise decision. It'll help produce a fair amount of energy in your home, day and night, especially if you have solar batteries with you. Lastly, you should purchase from reputable companies so that you'll get to enjoy top-quality solar panels.  

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