Solar power is being seen as the solution to our energy needs for the upcoming future. On an average during the middle of the day the sun provides about 1,000 watts of energy per hour per square meter. That translates to 1000 watt per hour per square meter or 1 kWh/ m2. According to the United States Department of Energy, in a 100 square mile area in the desert southwest of the United States receives enough energy from the sun to meet the entire US daily energy needs. Now, there has been a challenge between the nations government to find ways how to effectively convert all of the sun’s energy in this 100 square mile area into usable electricity.
Advantages of Solar Energy
Solar power through photovoltaic power systems is the most commonly method. There are many advantages of owning and operating a residential solar power system.
Solar panels have a long operational and functional life. Most manufactures warrantee their solar panels for 20 years.
Producing electricity from solar panels is completely a very silent process.
The solar panel also provides some shade for your roof. The area which is being covered by the photovoltaic panels on your roof is not being heated by the sun which will result in a slightly cooler attic.
Once you have reached the pay off point, the amount of time it takes to pay for the residential solar power system’s installation cost, from there on the system is earning you money.
Once the solar power system is installed and it is ready for use, it is pretty much a maintenance free electricity production system. If your system includes a battery pack you will need service the batteries periodically.
Having all these advantages why everyone is not using solar power for the home?
There are some disadvantages to solar energy that you must take care of. They should be taken into account as you consider installing a residential solar power system in your house.
Once installed, a residential solar panel becomes part of your house. When you move, the system stays with the house.
Solar power does not work well for your large devices that use an electric heat element. Devices like electric hot water heater, electric whole house furnace, electric oven and range.
During the night and on cloudy days the solar power system does not produce any electricity due to less or no sunlight.
Replacing your composition roofing will require extra work and cost because the solar panels and related mounting hardware will have to be removed from the roof.
The cost per watt to have a residential solar power system installed in your house is still much higher than what the electric utility company charges per kilowatt hour