Before making any investment, the first thing most people do is look at the pros and cons. That’s particularly true when people make a long-term investment, such as solar panels. The truth is that solar energy has become a trending topic among those looking to move into renewable energy sources. But, as with many other things, when something becomes a trending topic, you will find people in favor of it, and you’ll find those who oppose it. If you’re one of those looking into solar energy, but haven’t make a decision yet, we hope these solar energy pros and cons help you in your choice.
Solar energy advantages
The benefits of solar energy keep getting better and better. As solar energy technology continues to improve, prices for residential and commercial solar panels keep declining. Advocates for solar energy believe it’s the way to a cleaner future, and there are plenty of reasons for that.
Lowers energy bills
Probably the most significant point in favor of solar energy is how much your energy bills will decline. By meeting some or all of your energy needs through your solar system, your energy bills will instantly be lower.
Unlike other forms of renewable energies, solar panels require very little maintenance. In essence, the only maintenance solar panels need is to stay relatively clean. Also, because solar panels don’t have moving parts, you don’t have to worry about wear and tear that might need repairs.
Reduce your carbon footprint
Solar energy is a truly renewable energy source. Unlike fossil fuels, solar energy does not lead directly to pollutants being released into the atmosphere and water supplies. For those looking to reduce their carbon footprint, solar energy can be perhaps the ultimate solution.
Unlike other renewable energy sources such as wind energy, solar panels don’t have moving parts, thus making them almost noise-free. You might hear a slight hum if you’re standing right next to a solar array. Since your solar panels likely will be on your roof, you don’t really have to worry about this anyways.
Right now, people choosing solar energy can tap into federal and state tax benefits. 2019 is the last year homeowners can claim a 30 percent federal tax credit on installation cost. Homeowners also can tap into state-specific tax credits that make switching to solar energy more attractive. Many states offer net metering, which allows homeowners who generate some or all of their own electricity to use that electricity anytime, instead of when it’s generated. Net metering allows solar energy users to offset the cost of power drawn from the utility, which is a huge incentive for many homeowners.
Solar energy disadvantages
Even something as good as solar energy has its disadvantages. Those who oppose solar panels believe these reasons are enough not to consider them a viable option for the future. However, you are the ultimate judge between these pros and cons when deciding.
Solar energy depends on, well, the sun. It’s no secret that in order to work at full capacity, solar panels need sunlight to work efficiently. However, solar panels are still producing energy on cloudy days; they’re just not producing to their full capacity. While solar panels are weather dependent, even in cloudy, rainy and cold climates, you can benefit from this energy source.
Energy storage solutions
The biggest disadvantage of solar energy ties into weather dependency and the fact that they only work during daylight. Solar panels need the sun to work, so at night users are at the mercy of the energy they receive from the grid. The solution for this was to create batteries that provide energy storage solutions for your house. However, these are still costly, especially when compared to having the grid as your backup.
Not for every rooftop
While the sun is available for everyone, not every rooftop can benefit from the sun. In order to install solar panels on your house, your roof must meet certain requirements that include sunlight exposure, resistance and more. Working with a solar installation company can help determine if your rooftop qualifies.
Not for movers
For those considering moving, investing in solar panels might not be the smartest choice. Because solar panels help increase the value of your home, it’s best for those selling a home with solar to sell the solar panels with it. Chances are it’s not worth it for you to take your panels to your next home, considering removal and reinstallation costs, and the fact your next home may not be conducive for solar.
Before committing to getting solar panels for your home, consider weighing the pros and cons of solar energy. Hopefully, these can help you make final a decision.