The Advantages of Solar Panels (and there are many!)
There are many advantages of solar panels. If you are looking into them, you know that there are definitely are benefits to having solar panels.
What you may be wondering is this:
Is it really worth having solar panels?
It does require some investment to start up so you really need to know if it’s worth your while.
I definitely think it is worth having solar panels and there are many benefits to owning them. Following is the many advantages to owning solar panels – big or small.
Once you have your solar system set up, a major advantage is free energy! You’ve got your solar panels, they are in operation and no one can now charge you money for this.
You no longer have on-going and additional costs for your power. You can use your air conditioning guilt free!
There are zero operating costs.
Avoid Rising Electricity Prices
This advantage is mainly for homes installing solar or others that pay to plug themselves in. Once you’ve got your solar system installed, you know you can avoid any uprising electricity costs. (For some reason electricity prices only go in one direction!)
Where I live, electricity prices are a big concern and they are continually on the rise. Retirees are really feeling the stress of these rising costs.
Having solar power would really nip this concern in the bud.
You can think of buying solar panels a little bit like buying a house. You pay now and that is the cost of the house (or electricity) from now on. The price can’t go up. If you’re renting (or paying for electricity), you’re stuck with whatever price someone else decides to charge.
From this perspective, solar power is a real advantage.
The Sun is Very Reliable
One of the great advantages of solar power over other forms of renewable energy is that the sun is up there every day. (It may be cloudy some days but the sun is still up there.)
Wind energy can work quite well for some but there needs to be enough wind to make power. And some days are just still.
But the sun is always there.
No one can tell the sun not to shine, turn it off, shut it down for maintenance, or use too much of it causing a blackout. You can’t run out of it.
The sun provides uninterruptible power.
By Using Solar Power You Are Doing Good
One real reason people use solar power is because the sun is a renewable resource. It’s good for the planet.
- No using up any of the planet’s resources
- Solar power is environmentally friendly
- No pollution
- It helps the planet (and saves you money)
- Cuts carbon emissions
Cheap to Run, Low Maintenance and Long term
Practically, there are a number of advantages of solar panels once installed.
- They are inexpensive to run. Once up and going, there really isn’t much else to spend money on.
- Zero Operating Costs (for most). Depending on where you live, you may make money by putting extra electricity into the system. You may also be charged to putting energy into the system. (Don’t ask me why, I think it’s ridiculous!)
- Photovoltaic Panels work long term. Depending on the quality of your panels, they can last 30 – 50 years. Some say less, some say more. Either way, they’ll be there for a good long time. (Check out why I recommend monocrystalline panels on my home page.)
- Solar Power is Low Maintenance. There’s really not much (if anything) you need to do once you’ve set up. Check that they are secure and clear any snow or debris off of them.
Easy to Install
Depending on what you’d like your solar power kit for, you’ll find they don’t take too much hard work to install.
For a big installation on a home, you’ll likely hire a professional to install it. If you are a DIYer, you should be able to work it out without too many headaches as well.
If you are looking for a smaller system, you can definitely install it yourself. The solar power kit I recommend is one that others have found very easy to install on things like trailers, cabins and for RV solar panels.
Solar Panels Don’t Take Up Much Room
One of the good advantages of solar power is that it uses space that is not often utilized. Some set up their solar panels on the ground but for the most part, it’s a rooftop thing.
For a house: all the power you need can generally come from the space on your roof that faces the sun most directly.
For a smaller dwelling or shed: you can get enough solar power with the space you have on top of your camper, van, RV, cabin or shed. You may need to be mindful of your space to power needs ratio and choose an efficient solar power kit like this one.
Solar Power Systems Are Expandable
This benefit really is one that sets solar power apart from other sources of energy.
Because solar panels are modular, you can add more to what you’ve got. You can also add more batteries to store your energy.
This aspect gives you the opportunity to try out solar power on a smaller scale and then scale up when time or money permits. Or if you feel you need a bit more power.
So you can underestimate your power needs and then add more later.
The Costs of Solar Power Systems Are Going Down
The last few years have seen a sharp fall in the prices of solar power kits and solar power systems.
Bloomberg New Energy Finance has reported that for many countries, the cheapest source of power will be solar power over the next 15 years.
The reduction in cost is due mainly to the cost of installation becoming cheaper. Bloomberg expects the price to be $0.03 – $0.04 per kilowatt hour. Definitely below the prices of coal and natural gas.
Technology has stopped advancing so rapidly in this area and likely won’t bring much more in the way of cost reductions. While this may seem like a disadvantage, you can also know that buying a solar power kit or system will be just fine. There likely won’t be a big technological breakthrough that you’ll miss out on.
You can read more about this here.
Possible Tax Credits
In some areas, you can get either a tax credit or some sort of tax benefit for installing solar power (in your home or business). This is entirely based around where you like and what is available.
Be sure to check for local, state/provincial and federal tax benefit possibilities. You could possibly get more than one!
Increased Home Value
A study in the USA reported an increased home value of 3-4% for homes that had solar panels installed.
If you are wondering whether solar panels would harm or benefit your home for resale, it will definitely benefit you. Especially if you’re considering selling within the next 10 years.
If you think about someone wanting to buy a house and one had (free) solar power and one has regular old electricity bills, which one do you think they’d find more attractive? I’d definitely want the solar panels (and solar hot water too).
For those wanting to live off-grid, solar power is a really good option. Most take this route.
You don’t have to be tied to the system and live in a city. You can go wherever you want and still have the power you want and need.
All you need is some sunshine.
The advantages of solar power are:
- you get free energy
- you can avoid rising electricity prices
- it is very reliable
- it’s renewable
- environmentally friendly
- cheap to run
- low maintenance
- will last a long time
- it’s easy to install
- solar panels don’t use much space
- you can expand your solar power system
- the costs are much lower than before
- possibility of tax credits
- increased home value
- you can be off-grid
- equally available for everyone
That’s a big list! As you can see, there are many advantages of solar power.
If you are looking for a small system and just getting into solar, check out which solar power kit I recommend here. It’s an excellent one.