Solar power is almost a good idea for home owners interested in saving money on electricity costs and supporting a healthier environment. But there’s no denying that some homes are more well suited to solar power systems than others. Your sun exposure, roof, climate, even state policies can influence how well you’ll do with a residential solar power system.
It is true that the initial cost might be a bit heavy, but it makes more economic sense in the long run. This is a one time expenditure that serves cost free for the next thirty years or so. And about its effectiveness, people should feel comfortable that the technology itself has been proven, as a reliable and clean energy source.
Solar panels are popping up everywhere now and so are the ads for them. It’s no wonder harnessing energy from the sun appeals to everyone from carbon-cutting environmentalists to grid-wary doomsday preppers. But the real growth has been driven by average homeowners with a much simpler motive: saving money.
Before you invest in solar panels, it’s important to consider whether your home is a good fit for them. This doesn’t just mean calculating whether solar power is a worthwhile financial investments sometimes the physical nature of your home determines if a solar system will work on your property.
Here are some good reasons for using solar energy to power your home:
1. Cut-down electricity bill: The key reason that most homeowners are converting their power source to solar energy is to cut down their electrical bill because the electrical usage generated from the sun is free. By converting home appliances, it is possible to use solar energy which can save your utilities expenses.
2. It is a renewable energy source: Solar energy is a good alternative to replace fossil fuel as the major energy source because solar power is renewable at absolutely no cost, to supply energy infinitely.
3. Environment friendly: The world pollution is getting worse. Any effort that can reduce the pollution to the environment helps to save the earth. Solar panels are able to harness the energy from the sun and convert it to electricity. Therefore, the use of solar panels is environment friendly.
4. Low maintenance: Solar power system can last 20-30 years without major maintenance needed. You may need to do system check once a year, just to make sure everything is performing as it should.
IS YOUR HOME REALLY SUITABLE FOR SOLAR POWER…LET’S FIND !
- HOW BIG IS YOUR ELECTRICITY BILL?
Knowing how much you pay for energy is the first step in evaluating whether going solar will save money. In some areas, electricity is very inexpensive. For most homeowners, the electricity bill is a dreaded monthly expense. Going solar replaces utility energy with solar energy to see a return on that investment by paying less for that energy.
2. WHAT DIRECTION DOES YOUR ROOF FACE?
The direction your home faces will determine how much sunlight it gets throughout the day. The closer this is to south the better, so panels mounted on a roof facing south, south west or south east will perform best. Since the cost of solar has dropped significantly in the past few years, significant solar savings are possible, even if your roof doesn’t face perfectly south.
3. WHAT KIND OF ROOF YOU HAVE?
Solar panels can be installed on every roof material, some can be more complicated to work with than others. Not every solar company will install PV panels on a slate roof so if your home’s roof is made of this material, you will need to seek out an installer who has the experience and ability to work with them.
4. HOW MUCH SUNLIGHT DOES YOUR ROOF RECEIVE?
As solar power requires the sun to operate, having good sun exposure on your roof is a must.With solar panels facing in the south direction, you’ll get more energy out of your system. Of course, much like a satellite dish installers can find a good orientation for your solar panels that will yield the most sun exposure.
5. HOW IS YOUR LOCAL CLIMATE?
Your local climate greatly influences how well your home is able to produce solar power. Homes that receive a higher than average annual sunshine, more sunny hours and more clear days will generate solar power better than ones that have fewer hours in the sun. Living in a sunny location with solar power means your energy production may often exceed your usage, allowing you to take advantage of net metering credits and other financial benefits of solar power.
6. HOW ENERGY EFFICIENT IS YOUR HOME?
You need to understand your own patterns of electricity consumption and examine your utility bills, preferably for the last few years. Once you have an idea of how much energy you need, you’ll need to calculate how much power the solar system will produce. Your system supplier should be able to perform a solar site analysis for you, which will provide a rough estimate of the system’s estimated power capabilities. If the system’s potential is significantly lower than your needs, solar power may not be right for you.
7. WHAT COST IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
Cost of Solar Panels depends upon couple of factors,… How much is your utility bill and the size of open area you have. Once these two things are determined you should decide upon the make and the efficiency of solar panels. Pricing may vary from brand to brand, for example a 100 watt Solis Mono crystalline panel would cost around Rs.5200, Su-Kam 250 watt silicon panel will cost 11,500 and a Renogy 100 watt mono crystalline panel costs around 65,000. Check more solar panel pricing in www.solarshopper.in
Most of the home owners go for 1 KW system in the beginning. This system generates on an average 3-4 units of electricity around 300 days a year. Cost again varies, but as an example, BITree 1 KW solar system costs around Rs 95,000 online with do it yourself instruction, the box includes 1000 W solar panel , Junction box for solar, 1000 VA grid invert-er and CONTROL BOX with MCBs. You can also get 1 KW system for 10 – 12000 lesser rates if you browse around.
There is no doubt that in the short run itself you will start noticing the value for money. Lets look at the return on investment, 1 KW system would enable you to save around Rs 14000 per year in utility bills, So it will take around 6 years to break even. But the best part is, most of the panels last for 25-30 years hence you can earn handsome returns for 17-18 years. Also you can always install additional panels to generate more energy. So Its a win- win situation for all!
If economically members of our society goes solar, then it will surely benefit the country. Lots of people who do not have access to electricity would get access to electricity.
If you feel confident that your home is a suitable candidate, it is time to contact a professional. Though you can find a rough estimate of the size of solar system you need with the equation above, an exact number depends on a lot of different factors that most people won’t be able to figure out on their own. A professional solar installer can also determine what kind of system would work best for your needs.
This guest has been written by Gunjan Johar, Real Estate Blogger.