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Learn About Home Solar Power
The benefits of solar energy are expansive and include lowering homeowners’ utility bills and helping to better the environment. Homeowners who want to do their part to save energy should review the solar options they have available for their homes. By installing solar panels to assist with energy usage, these homeowners can experience lower utility bills while also feeling hopeful about the state of the environment. Before researching how many solar panels to power a house, a homeowner should learn about the systems available and the possible results they would achieve by installing these systems.
Solar energy cost is a factor that can make homeowners wary of installing systems at home. However, there are many financing or equipment leasing opportunities available to homeowners who decide to install these systems. Homeowners are encouraged to analyze their energy usage, utility costs and the impact on their annual household budgets.
They should also consider how this energy usage can potentially negatively impact the environment. By comparing these factors to how solar systems can assist in powering their homes and the costs of equipment, they can begin to decide if solar panels are right for them. To find out more about how home solar power can benefit a homeowner and the potential costs associated with installing a system, homeowners can read through the following information.
How does a home solar power system work?
If you are looking for solar energy information, keep in mind there are two different types of solar systems in use today. Concentrating solar power (CSP) technologies are large systems that use mirrors to concentrate and reflect sunlight. Once sun power is harnessed by this equipment, it is turned into heat and energy, which is used as electricity and power. These technologies are usually only used in commercial settings, usually by the utility or solar power companies themselves.
The benefits of solar energy to the environment through these commercial systems are vast. In some cases, smaller systems that use this technology are installed by commercial companies without the assistance of power companies on their campuses. However, even these smaller technologies are still built on large scales that require sufficient space. Since these set-ups and technologies are so large, they cannot be used in residential neighborhoods or individually by homeowners.
Photovoltaic (PV) solar cells, which are generally referred to as simply “solar cells” for short are commonly found in residences. You can identify homes that have solar power capabilities by locating solar panels on the roofs of these houses. These solar panels absorb sunlight on the roof of the home and this sunlight and heat is converted into energy. The homeowner then has the energy converted into electricity to help power the home. Some homes run on strictly solar power while others may utilize some of this solar power and some regular electricity from a utility company to meet the household’s needs. If a home solar power system is not a practical solution for your energy needs, review our comprehensive guide to LIHEAP energy assistance instead.
What are the benefits of solar energy?
The benefits of solar panels in homes lower costs of utilities and less energy usage each month. The homeowners who choose to go solar are also contributing to a healthier and more stable environment. By using solar energy instead of traditional energy from utility companies, these homeowners are reducing the amount of carbon and other harmful pollutants that are emitted into the air. These pollutants are harmful to the environment. Not only do they pollute the air but they can also contaminate the Earth’s water, which can negatively impact the oceans and the food chain.
When the air is polluted with these toxins, it is unhealthy to breathe and can also negatively impact the ozone layer, plants and animals. The installation of solar panels on residential properties can reduce or eliminate the need for utility companies to produce as much energy and can decrease the number of harmful pollutants that are emitted into the environment by the production of power.
What is the solar energy cost for a system?
If you are wondering, “Should I go solar?” one of the factors that you may be worried about is the cost of the system. The cost of solar equipment is generally one of the drawbacks of this power source and this high cost can discourage homeowners from looking into further options for solar systems.
The amount of money you have to spend to install a solar system on your home is dependent on several factors. The solar energy cost for the installation of a system for your residence is determined by the following:
- The size of your home
- Your household’s energy needs
- Your location
- The shape of your roof
There are additional factors analyzed by solar professionals before the cost for solar energy for your home is provided. A professional will take the characteristics of installation and how much sun your home will get on average in consideration to determine how much power solar panels will be able to provide to your household. By reviewing these factors, a professional can suggest the size of system you need, which dictates the cost of the equipment and installation.
One of the benefits of solar energy is that these systems are gaining popularity and prices have been decreasing over the past several years. There are also financing options available if you decide to install a system. Some solar installation companies offer financing directly through their companies, commonly referred to as full-service solar developers.
You can also choose to have a solar company install the system in your home without you paying for the equipment. The company will charge you per kilowatt (kW) used by your household, similar to how a utility company charges you for usage. This is referred to as a power purchase agreement (PPA) and is common with homeowners who do not want to pay for their own systems. You may also qualify for the Energy Efficient Mortgage program to help you bear the costs of solar panel installation.
Additionally, you can lease the equipment for home solar energy power from a solar leasing company. This is generally referred to as a solar lease agreement and the monthly fee that you must pay can vary, depending on the company and the system you have installed on your property. You do not pay for the equipment and you benefit from the power produced by the installed system.
However, you must pay the monthly rental fee for the equipment and you do not own any of the solar equipment that you utilize with this option. Keep in mind, if your household consumes more power than the solar equipment can provide, you are responsible for paying the utility company for this additional energy. If solar energy cost and financing options are not for you, download our informative guide to LIHEAP assistance for information on more immediate utility assistance.