Benefits of owning your own solar in Scottsdale, AZ
There are two technologies that are applied to harvest solar energy from the sun’s radiation. One is solar thermal technology that captures heat from the sun and the other is photovoltaic solar technology that converts it into electricity using semiconductor cells. Solar energy has proved to be beneficial both to humans and the environment. There is a lot of energy that can be harvested through solar power every day than we can use in a year. Its discovery and development of dates back longer than most of us realize.
Circa 1830s, Edmond Becquerel, a French physicist, was the first to conclude that certain surfaces gained charge when exposed to sunlight. Since then, several researchers have contributed to the development of solar energy as we know it today. The most noticeable scientist and inventors include Charles Fritts, an American who designed a solar prototype in the early 1880s and a team of American scientists who managed to assemble the first photovoltaic cell in 1952. They were Gerald Pearson, Calvin Fuller, and David Chapin.
Advances in the solar industry have occurred significantly in the fast-paced 21st century as solar power companies continue conducting extensive research. The industry serves millions of people around the world as natural renewable energy continues to become a popular way of managing electricity bills. The solar energy market has recorded over 75% growth in the last few years, generating about 1.5% of the country’s electricity. With more Americans embracing solar energy every day, here are a few reasons why you should invest in solar energy.
Zero marginal cost of generation
Solar energy is able to power a house in locations with an average amount of sunlight with zero net energy consumption. Depending on the season, for example, on warm spring, you will be able to generate more power than you consume. The primary factor that attracts American homeowners to solar power is the fact that once you have paid for installation, the energy is free. The main reason is, considering the high standards of living in the modern world, most Americans are more interested in the financial aspects of investments. Over the last few years, homeowners have witnessed significant advantages that come with clean and renewable energy in terms of return on investment. There are several solar cost estimators online that you can use to give you an estimate of the return on capital employed depending on the size and location of your home.
It favors the environment
One of the significant determinants of how our future will be is the impact human activity has on the environment. We all want to do the best we can to protect and preserve the beauty around us. This said, the question is how solar energy impacts the environment. The use of solar energy does not cause pollution. While the industry might be associated with emissions such as sodium hydroxide and hydrofluoric acid, these emissions are significantly reducing the level of pollution compared to the dependence on fossil fuels. Fossil fuels such as natural gas and coal, which are used to produce electricity, are the leading causes of pollution in the world today. Additionally, most solar panels are warranted to generate power for up to two and a half decades compared to its energy payback period which usually between 12 to 48 months.
It provides renewable energy
The sun provides 100% renewable clean energy. As said earlier, the use of fossil fuels is the primary cause of adverse effects on climate. Global warming being a significant problem for every nation today, the implementation of environment-friendly strategies like the use of solar energy can be used to reverse it. It is estimated that within the next 65 years, the earth would have lost several species of animals and plants to extinction as compared to the last 65 million years combined. This is a wakeup call for us to start finding alternatives to greenhouse gases that have significantly contributed to this statistic. On the other hand, solar energy harvests abundant power from an unlimited source without causing pollution. Renewable energy improves our health, and investment in solar energy will reduce overall health care costs and premature mortality.
You get to earn tax rebates or credits
Most people, including me, did not realize how huge the investment in solar energy affects our taxes. In fact, solar panels could pay us because of the federal income tax credit. This refundable tax credit gives you 30% of the total expenses incurred from the installation and purchase of equipment. This means you would receive $1,500 for investment worth $5000. If you add state and local rebates from SRECs, you would have saved about 50%. The sale of Solar Renewable Energy Credits to utility firms generates a significant return on capital employed. For homeowners who may not want to make an initial investment, many firms offer a no-cost installation and reduced the energy cost. They are basically using your roof by charging you electricity costs at a reduced rate.
You get to save money
Energy costs can be expensive, usually amounting to thousands of dollars annually. The average expenditure for an American citizen is over $3000 every year. This figure includes residential energy and transportation. Solar energy offers you daily efficiency and savings even in cloudy and colder climates depending on the orientation, efficiency, and size relative to the sun. Solar energy eliminates the need to incur these unnecessary expenses allowing you to save money as soon as the equipment is installed. Additionally, solar panels extend the life of the roof from environmental elements, including the sun, rain, and snow. Imagine this – instead of the powerful UV rays from the sun wearing down your roof every day, you could put up solar panels to make use of the energy. This would make your home more energy-efficient.
It’s flexible – It can be used in any part of the country
The solar energy that can be generated in the United States is huge. Sixty minutes of sunlight at noon is equal or more than the whole country’s electricity demand in a year. Though the level of solar irradiation may vary depending on the geographical location (the closer to the equator, the more the intensity), solar energy can be used anywhere on earth. With regard to geographic proximity from the equator, some areas have excellent solar resources while others have low to moderate. Regions like Alaska and the Pacific Northwest which have relatively lower solar resources can experience similar solar resources and lower energy expenses as countries like Italy, Germany, and China which have widely developed Solar Photovoltaic (PV). A solar panel produces about 4.7 kWh of power per 1 kilowatt of solar panels in the country’s sunniest regions. At the same time, colder areas are still able to produce about 2.9 kilowatt-hours per kilowatt installed, every day.
It increases asset value
Solar panels are assets that have a useful life of over two and a half decades. They can be viewed as upgrades to our homes like a renovated basement, garage, or a finished kitchen and therefore upgrading your house by installing solar energy features will significantly increase your property value by over 4%. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory reported that a homeowner could gain about $10000 to $15000 or more on average. Zillow also conducted a study in metropolitan areas that concluded that there were no records of homes decreasing in value due to solar panels. Another study showed that homeowners could realize an increase in the resale value by over $5900 per kilowatt installed. This means if you installed a 12 kW solar panel system, your home resale value would increase by nearly $70,000.
Gives you total control over electricity
A study conducted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory concluded that US homeowners have experienced a steady and significant increase in both the duration and frequency of power blackouts over the last one and a half decades. The US has recorded the highest number of power shortages compared to any other first-world nation. Our electricity grid, which has lasted for over a century, cannot handle current extreme environmental catastrophes and the increase in population. Giant companies like PG&E estimate that the country will need to spend over $150 billion in several years to come to make the grid more secure – an amount that customers will have to incur.
Solar companies continue inventing and developing solar technology that would make its everyday use easier. The installation of solar energy panels which power home battery units gives you total control over your electricity. By having solar systems that harvest energy during the day and store during the night, you are guaranteed independence. This eliminates the possibility of experiencing power shortages.
Easy installation and little maintenance
Solar panels are easy to install and do not demand a lot of equipment, unlike geothermal and wind power stations that are more complicated. Solar panels do not require expensive drilling machines – only the room on your rooftop is utilized. This, therefore, means that there would be no new space needed, and owners can generate their own power. With the industry experiencing technological advancement, there would be increased productivity and a decrease in the cost of solar equipment.
Additionally, the systems are easy to maintain. Though the cost of installing might be slightly high, once the power starts running, you will reap its benefits in the long-term without having to pay for repairs. It would also be easy to install more panels or reduce if you need an energy change. Apart from this, solar systems do not have any adverse effects in terms of toxic emissions and creating noise.
The time to embrace solar power is now. If you are looking into solar energy for your home, you will have found a great way to eliminate unnecessary costs. Since the costs are gradually decreasing and solar power companies experimenting novel solar systems every day, you will not be disappointed. Let’s keep putting our efforts together to reap the benefits that come with this great energy. It would be amazing to see where we would be in the solar industry in the next few years.