Why Should I Go Solar?
Solar power has been available for decades, but high costs and panel inefficiency prevented the technology from gaining widespread acceptance. As the cost of producing solar power continues to decline, homeowners and businesses have become increasingly aware of the many benefits of using clean, renewable solar energy.
Why You Should Install a Solar System
When compared to conventional energy sources like coal, oil and natural gas, solar power has many advantages. Since it is renewable, generating electricity from the sun helps protect the environment. Here are some of the most compelling reasons you should consider installing a solar energy system.
1) Dramatically Reduce or Eliminate Your Electric Bill: At home or work, people rely on a variety of electric-powered devices, so it is no surprise that electricity costs continue to escalate. Installing a solar photovoltaic system can largely eliminate monthly electric utility costs over the average 25-year lifespan of the equipment. Most modern systems generate more than enough electricity to power an average home.
2) Generous Financial Incentives: The federal government provides healthy subsidies for every homeowner who installs a solar water heater or photovoltaic system. State government and local utility rebates vary, but many individuals and businesses qualify for additional incentives. In general, solar power users are allowed to claim tax credits based on the total generating capacity of the system they install. On average, rebates and credits account for 20-30 percent of the installed cost of the equipment.
3) Lower Environmental Impact: Solar energy helps reduce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions. The technology is clean and free of methane, carbon and other airborne toxins. While the production of solar panels does require some energy and certain raw materials, it does not involve any drilling or large-scale mining operations. In the U.S., buildings are responsible for almost 35 percent of all carbon emissions, but a modern residential solar system can reduce the quantity of environmental pollutants by 3-4 tons per year.
4) Enhanced Property Values: Recent studies indicate that homes and buildings that have a renewable energy system sell faster than conventional homes. They also carry a sales price premium of four percent or more. The appraisal industry now recognizes the value of solar systems, which may result in even higher premiums in the future.
5) Low Maintenance: Since there are no moving parts in a solar system, maintenance costs are extremely low. As the equipment generates energy, the components operate quietly and efficiently. Most systems can be easily expanded by adding additional panels. In most instances, the installed cost of a solar system can be recovered within 10-15 years of normal operation.
Solar Power is the Future
Fossil fuels are finite resources, and they have created significant environmental consequences. Over time, it has become fairly obvious that the future of energy production belongs to renewable energy sources. Although it is not a panacea, the benefits of modern solar energy are undeniable for those looking to save money and help protect the planet.