Experts have talked to a number of our friends and other colleagues about solar power, we've been hearing a lot of the same excuses for not going solar.
Worst Solar Excuses
Reginald A. Norris | Clean Energy Experts
Time and time again, we have to explain to them why their reasoning is unfounded but still we find the same excuses wherever we go. So we thought we’d take a little time to dispel the four most common excuses for not utilizing solar power.
First Excuse: It’s Too Expensive
Every one seems to know that federal and state governments have significant financial incentives in place to help promote the adoption of solar power. Even after these incentives, the average residential solar system costs between $10,000 and $30,000 and for most people, this represents a major capital investment. As a result, most people stop there and say, “I can’t afford it.”
What they don’t know is that there are a number of financing options available to help ease the cost of solar. For example, a number of solar installers offer financing programs, similar to small loan or mortgage, where there is little to no up front cost and finance the balance of the purchase price through a loan. As a result, the homeowner does not have to come up with cash upfront but can amortize the cost of the solar system over time. What’s great is that when you factor in a your reduced utility bill from solar and the amortization cost of the panels, this amount is most likely still less than your electric bill without solar. So you save immediately and that savings grows over time as electricity rates increase.
There are also programs where you can lease the panels for no up front costs and you pay a small per month. Again, the savings on your electric bill from the solar panels plus this leasing fee is still likely to be less than your current electric bill without solar. There is also a mechanism called a power purchase agreement, which is a great option for larger projects, where the solar installer installs and owns the panels on the roof of your home but simply charges you a flat fee for your electricity over the life of the agreement (typically 15-20 years). That way you are guaranteed a set rate of electricity and there is no up front cost to you. You can learn more about these programs here.
The moral of the story is that there are a lot of options for people to pay for solar panels. Gone are the days where you have to come up with all the money for solar panels up front. There are simply more ways than ever to finance and make the cost of solar work out beneficially for residential and commercial consumers alike.
Second Excuse: I Live in a Cold Climate So Solar Won’t Work
Another really bad excuse. The average temperature in a climate region does not have an effect on solar panels. In fact, solar panels are actually slightly more efficient at producing electricity in cold temperatures.
The critical factor for solar panels is a concept called solar isolation which is the amount of sunlight that the solar cells receive. Obviously, the more the better so even if you live in a colder climate that is further north and receive ample amounts of sunlight, solar should work for you just fine. (If you want to learn more about how solar panels work, you can click here.)
Remember, Germany, is which is farther north than just about any state in the U.S., is the world leader in solar photovoltaic energy with over 9,000 Megawatts. That’s almost enough to cover the roofs of 2 million U.S. houses! So don’t worry if you live in a cold climate, just make sure that you receive plenty of sunshine.
Third Excuse: If I Have Solar Panels and It is Cloudy, I Have No Power
A reasonable concern, but again, not a good reason to avoid solar power. As stated above, it’s not temperature that affects the performance of solar panels, rather it is the amount sunlight received. And even if the sunniest of locations, there are going to be days where there is cloud cover or rain or nightfall and your solar panels’performance may be compromised. Not to worry…you will not be left in the dark.
Residential and commercial solar panels these days are almost always connected to the utility grid…it is called a grid-tie. So, while your solar panels are exposed to the sun, the electricity they produce powers your house or building. But when it is cloudy or at night, you will still be able to draw power for your home or building because you remain connected to the electrical grid.
Another cool concept is what is called net metering. In states that allow net metering, if your solar panels produce more electricity in a day than you are consuming, that extra electricity is fed back into the electric grid and can actually spin your electric meter backward. As a result, at the end of the month, the electric company will take into account the electricity that you fed back in to the grid through your solar power system and you will only pay for the net amount of electricity that you consume.
Fourth Excuse: I Do Not Know Where to Start Getting Solar
The worst excuse of them all! First of all, there is a ton of information on the Internet related to solar, so for starters you can get educated that way. However, we understand that there may be so much information that you are overwhelmed. Never fear, sites like MyEnergySolution.com take the mystery out of the solar process. MyEnergySolution.com contains all the information you need to know about how solar works, what to expect and even ideas to help finance your solar power system. With sites like MyEnergySolution.com, there is no excuse not to understand the key elements of going solar.
“But what about getting a solar installer? How do I know who to pick?” Another great question. You can obviously talk to friends who have installed solar in their homes and ask for a reference. But if you don’t have that, solar energy matching services can also take much of the guess work out of selecting a solar installer. There are several free matching services that connect you with pre-selected and highly reputable solar installers based. The process is simple: you provide basic information on your location and project type and within minutes or up to 1-2 business days the qualified solar installers will contact you to bid on your project. These services have saved homeowners time and the headache of dealing with poor quality installers. For example, see http://www.solar-energy-installers.com.
We know that people have other reasons for not going solar and that is fine. Choosing solar is a personal/business decision that can only be made by you. However too often, we have seen a number of friends and business associates avoid solar power based on the excuses above and when solar could have been so value-added to their home or commercial project. Our goal here is to hopefully de-bunk the biggest excuses that we have seen and help show that there answers and solutions out there for your concerns. If you have any other questions, concerns or other excuses that you’d like us to add in here, please drop us a line here!
The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of AltEnergyMag
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