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Common myths and misconceptions about solar energy

by Dr Prem Community Writer
Solar water heater

The world is suffering from many environmental issues. These include environmental issues ranging from coral bleaching, population expansion to depletion of natural resources. We are still trying to find a workable solution to all these. Nevertheless, there’s one way to cope with all these problems. If we switch completely to renewable and pollution-free energy, then that would have a significant impact. Although there’s more than many renewable sources of energy, Solar energy is undoubtedly the king of the mountain. In fact, many experts are speculating that it would go mainstream in the near future.

Why solar energy?

Solar energy is a clean and green energy and, as of now, a renewable energy source which can be easily installed in homes and offices conveniently. In spite of the many obvious benefits, there are many myths which can make a person interested in installing a system, think twice. These myths and misconceptions have to be explained, so that you can decide for yourself whether to install one or not. Here are 8 common myths and misconceptions about solar energy which you should stop believing:

1. It costs a huge amount of money

solar loan A lot of people shy away from solar energy systems because they think that the installation cost is too much. The initial installation cost of solar panels depends on several factors – the size of the system and your home will play a role in the costs. Besides, depending on where you live, you get the tax benefit known as a solar tax credit (in the US). You can also avail of a solar lease or solar loan too, and even with a solar loan, you can benefit from tax credit etc.

2. Solar energy systems cannot operate in inclement weather and snow

One of the myths believed by many people is that when clouds block the sun, the solar panels would not be effective and no energy would be generated. But solar panels do generate energy in cloudy weather. Snow might block panels for some time, but snow tends to melt fast from solar panels. Apart from that, due to ‘net metering’ system, your home can be powered by energy from the grid.

3. Solar energy systems store the excess energy

Solar water heaterMost residential solar energy systems do not actually store excess power in batteries. They are connected to the power grid through net metering, and you would be credited with the power/energy your system feeds the grid. You can add battery/ies to your system if you want to, but it will increase installation, material and maintenance cost.

4. It’s better to wait for the technology to be more advanced

There have been many upgrades over time, and right now solar power systems are efficient enough to power your home 100%. Some solar panels can generate more than 300 watts with approximately 20% efficiency. Also, the solar tax credits would be stopped after 2019. So if you are considering installing a solar power system in your home, you should do so before the tax credits are over.

5. Solar panels will cause roof leakage

Solar panel

Another myth which needs to be demystified is that solar panels may cause rook leakage. In fact, it’s the other way round, as solar panels can protect your roof and will even extend its life. Many contractors give a 10-year warranty on their solar installations.

6. Solar power systems need a lot of maintenance

These systems do not have any parts which move, so they are basically maintenance free. The system is checked by an architect before installing it in any home. The panels are made in a way that they can generate energy for 20 years. The only thing that might have to be replaced between 12 -20 years, is the inverter.

7. You get your ROI after many years

roi

One of the most common myths about solar energy is that it takes up to 25 years to get your ROI. But in reality, you can see ROI immediately due to the energy savings you get due to the reduced energy bills. If you avail of the credits, you can get your entire investment back in 4-5 years. Also, a solar energy system adds considerably to the value of your home.

When we talk about solar energy, we normally mean solar panels. However, the cost of making solar panels is much more than the energy it produces, which further makes it altogether an expensive proposition. For producing solar panels, makers use electricity generated by burning fossil fuels. Now, a new study from the researchers of the Stanford shows that solar energy is not that expensive as the energy that they produce equals the energy required to make them.

In 2012, solar panels sold online all over the world produced enough energy to even out energy required to manufacture them. The statistics are certainly bright. These further goes on to state that by 2020, the production of solar energy will certainly offset the cost of producing solar panels. Once all the extra cost such as installation cost and material cost is under control, there will be no limitations to this outstanding source of energy.

Though it’s not as easy as it seems to be, researchers are very optimistic about the role of solar power in future. It is and will be the main source of clean and sustainable energy in the times to come.

8. Your property tax would increase due to solar panels

A misconception which is in the mind of most people is that installing solar panels would increase property tax, as the value of the home increases. But, actually, in many states of the US, solar power is exempted from the calculation of property tax. Thus you have the benefit of an asset which increases your home’s value but on which you don’t have to pay any tax. So are you ready to make the switch to solar energy? Check out Get Assist to hire a qualified professional who can properly install your solar panels.

Solar energy systems are a great green energy alternative, which can produce all the electricity required for your home or office and is a valuable asset which is good for the environment too.