Cost of Solar & Benefits of Installing Solar
Many home and business owners in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Norfolk don’t give solar energy much consideration because they fear the installation costs are too high to outweigh the benefits. The fact is the savings you see on your energy costs pay for your solar energy system over time, and after that, the savings equal money in your pocket.
How Much Does a Solar Energy System Cost?
The cost to install a solar system varies with each individual buyer. Just like power companies charge you for the amount of energy you use, as opposed to your home’s size, solar energy works in a similar way. Every household and business is different, but the following three primary factors affect your solar panels’ overall price.
- The direction your home faces. Solar panels are typically installed on the east, west, or south side of a home’s roof. Although these installations will result in energy production and savings, the south side is the best option when possible. In this position, they get the peak amount of sunlight each day, more so than if they are facing directly east or west.
- The amount you want to offset your electric bill with solar power. If you simply want to save on your electrical bill and not produce all the energy you need to power your home, you won’t need as many solar panels.
- Current power usage. The amount of energy you typically use, along with your roof’s size, will affect how many solar panels you install on your house or business. Of course, the fewer panels you install, the less it will cost. Solar panels have become much more efficient than they once were, with a peak of about 21%-22%.
For example, if an average home gets peak sunlight for four or five hours a day, and at 20% efficiency, a square meter of solar panel gets 4-5 kWh of solar energy. This converts to between .8 and 1 kWh of usable energy. Since most homes use about 30 kWh of energy each day, you would need between 30 and 40 square meters of panels to generate all of the energy you need. This is between 300 and 400 square feet, or one-sixth the area of a typical roof. Since you need such a small area of solar panels, the cost is far less than it was at one time.
Other Benefits of Installing Solar Panels
In addition to how solar energy can save you money on your monthly utility bills, you can benefit in other ways.
- Rising energy costs. The market for fossil fuels is volatile, and companies are always raising their rates. Solar energy costs, on the other hand, are continually going down. States offer their own incentives for installing solar, and there is a federal tax credit of 26% that you can take advantage of when you get your system. As fossil fuels continue to be depleted and energy rates from your utility company go up, it just makes sense to install solar panels.
- Net Metering. This unique interaction between your system and the energy grid is another way to save. Basically, your solar panels will produce more energy than you will typically need during peak hours, so this energy gets fed back into the grid. This energy is credited to you for use when it is cloudy or dark, and you are using more energy than your system is producing.
Call Nipper and Save
Now is a great time to start using green solar energy and save on your utility bills while reducing your carbon footprint. If you are interested in learning more about solar panel installation and how it can benefit your home or business, Reach out to Nipper Electric today. We can set up an appointment to give you an estimate.