As people grow more and more environmentally conscious, they’re trying to do their part by living a “greener” lifestyle. A big part of that is reducing your carbon footprint in various ways – from recycling and composting to driving less and using energy-efficient appliances. However, one of the big ways you can make a dent in your carbon footprint is by installing solar panels. While they undeniably offer many benefits – not just by helping the environment, but also by saving you money on your energy bills in the long run – there are a few things you need to consider before installing them.
As with any other house improvement project, it’s important to look at the costs and benefits of Solar Property Design and installing solar panels. This will depend on a few factors, amongst which three stand out as the main ones: your location, the quality of the panels, and the size of your home. The cost of solar panels varies greatly based on where you live. For example, in Australia, the average 5kW solar system installation cost is around 5000 AUD, while the same system in the US would be around 10k USD on average. Of course, the quality of the panels plays a big part here as well. Higher-quality ones will typically mean a larger upfront investment, but lower-quality panels will cost you more in the long run due to their shorter lifespan. Finally, larger homes will tend to have a higher installation cost, as will homes located in areas with less sunshine. These three factors are important to consider when calculating the overall cost of installing solar panels in your home, and a good way to do that is to use an online solar panel calculator.
2. Local Laws And Regulations
Before you go ahead and start with the project, it’s important to check with your local government to see if there are any laws or regulations in place that might affect your decision. While more and more places are welcoming the change – some states have even approved major grid-supply solar projects, others aren’t so welcoming of the change. For example, in some places homeowners are not allowed to install solar panels if they’re connected to the grid – they must be completely off-grid. There may also be restrictions on the size and type of solar panel systems you can install, so be sure to do your research ahead of time.
3. Roof Type And Sun Exposure
One of the main things that determine how effective your solar panels will be is how much sunlight they’re exposed to. This is why it’s important to consider the direction your roof faces and how much sun it gets throughout the day. If your roof doesn’t face south, or if it doesn’t get a lot of direct sunlight, installing solar panels may not be the best option for you. The pitch of your roof is also something to take into account – the steeper the pitch, the less effective solar panels will be. However, one way to overcome this is to have polls installed to help tilt the panels in the right direction. They may not be the prettiest addition to your home, but they’ll help make sure that your solar panels are getting the most out of the sun.
4. Your Home’s Energy Consumption
In order to get the most out of your solar panels, it’s important to take a look at your energy consumption and see where you can make changes. For starters, you want to make sure that your appliances are as energy-efficient as possible. That means buying appliances that have the Energy Star label and making sure that your old ones are properly disposed of. You also want to make sure that you’re not using more energy than you need. For example, don’t leave your lights on when you’re not home, and unplug electronics when they’re not in use. You can also save energy by making sure your home is properly insulated and by using LED light bulbs. If you’re able to reduce your energy consumption in these ways, you’ll be able to offset some- or even all – of the energy that your solar panels produce. However, you want to ensure that the solar system you’re considering will at least be able to cover around 60% of your energy needs in order for it to make sense financially.
5. Available Rebates And Incentives
Another thing to consider when installing solar panels is the available rebates and incentives. Many places offer rebates or tax credits for people who install solar panels, so be sure to do your research and see if you’re eligible. In some places, you can even sell the energy that your solar panels produce back to the grid, which can help offset the cost of installation. You can also look into energy-saving programs offered by your local utility company. These programs can offer discounts on your energy bill for making energy-saving changes to your home, such as installing solar panels. The best way to see what’s available to you is to contact your local utility company or government and ask about the available programs.
6. Maintenance And Repair
Even the best solar panels will eventually need to be repaired or replaced, so it’s important to have a plan in place for maintenance and repair. Most solar panel manufacturers offer a warranty for their products, but that doesn’t mean that all of the servicing needs will be covered. Be sure to ask the manufacturer about the warranty and what it covers. You also want to find a reliable solar panel installer who will be available for repairs if needed. Some of the things you want to look for in a warranty include:
- The length of the warranty
- What is covered under the warranty
- What happens if the panels are damaged
- How long does the warranty last for repairs
Installing solar panels is a big decision, but it’s one that can have a lot of benefits for you and your home. They can help you save on your energy bill, reduce your carbon footprint, and even help you sell back energy to the grid. However, before making the decision to install solar panels, it’s important that you take the time to consider all of the factors involved, you can be sure to make the best decision for yourself, and these 6 are a great place to start.