Solar Energy Facts

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Solar Energy Disadvantages - Consider the Disadvantages of Solar Energy

It’s always wise to look at both pros and cons when considering any project. The same is true when evaluating whether you want to install home solar power systems. When it comes to solar panels for sale, there are some disadvantages of solar energy. The biggest disadvantage or drawback for solar panels is the initial investment. Even though the cost has already come down a lot over the years, without government incentives, the solar industry couldn’t stand on its own in most areas.

One of the first things to consider when evaluating different solar energy systems is your location. Location can make a big difference when it comes to solar performance. You will get better performance from your system the closer you live to the equator. That doesn’t mean that you need to live on the equator to generate good solar power. But there are other things to consider about your location. What are your weather conditions like? Do you have a lot of sunlight? If the answer to that question is yes, you are probably a good candidate. But, if you have a lot of cloudy weather, your solar production will be diminished. Your solar panels will produce electricity even in cloudy weather, but you will see a big drop off. Are you prone to having severe thunder storms? A properly installed system can withstand a considerable amount of wind, but hail could end up damaging the solar panels. These panels are very tough, but large hail with wind would probably damage them.

Not only is your geographical location important, but the layout of your house. For roof mounted systems, optimal performance will require your roof to be facing the South, South-East or South-West. It’s possible if you have a large piece of property to mount the solar panels along the ground. They will still need to be raised off of the ground. If you don’t have a location that allows for South facing panels, your production will not be good. It is wise to have a professional who installs solar panels come and evaluate your situation before you invest in The next question is, “do you have any tall trees that may block the sun from hitting the solar panels at any time during the day?” If you do, that can also hinder solar production. You may have to remove or relocate some of those trees. This could be one of the biggest disadvantages of solar energy.

One of the biggest drawbacks of solar energy is the fact that the sun doesn’t shine all of the time. Without sunshine there is no solar power electricity. What do you do for a power source at night or during stormy weather? You will need to either hook up to the grid or have some kind of battery storage system. Storage space for batteries can become a challenge and one of the disadvantages of solar power. Solar panels can become a distraction if they cover the whole roof, although panels have gotten smaller and technology is allowing them to blend in better with roof styles.

Maintenance can become a disadvantage of solar panels. Even though your system may be under warranty for the first twenty or twenty-five years, what happens if it does go down? Most people don’t have the technical skills to troubleshoot and repair the system. You can’t call just anyone to look at your system. You may be down for a few days when the manufacturer sends someone to repair them. The good thing is, solar power is normally very dependable and requires very little maintenance.

When batteries and panels come to the end of their life, how do you dispose of them? Both the panels and the storage batteries contain materials that are very toxic. Some of the harmful substances you are dealing with are lead, cadmium telluride, and sulfuric acid. Fortunately, the batteries are about 98 percent recyclable. Also, with the advancement of technology, we will probably be seeing more eco-friendly photovoltaic cell production.

Take into consideration all of the above potential issues. Combine this with all of the advantages of solar energy. Evaluate your power bills over the past two to three years. See how much power you have averaged per month. Call in several solar power companies for an estimate. Talk to others you know who have already installed residential solar power. Consider all of the pros and cons of solar energy before you make that important decision. If you have some obstacles, evaluate if they are ones that you can easily overcome? Make a list of advantages and disadvantages of solar energy. Check to see if federal tax credits and state rebates may apply for your project. If they do, often times the savings adds up to about 50% of your project. That alone may make it worth your investment. Hopefully you can figure out a way to overcome solar energy disadvantages and figure a way to get photovoltaic power to work for you.