All power sources have their own pros and cons and solar power is no different. Due to the fact that solar power is a pretty hefty investment to begin with for generating electricity, it’s definitely worth looking into the pros and cons so that you get a vivid picture of what it entails. Continue reading this list of solar power pros and cons to put things into perspective and help you decide whether investing in this renewable energy source is really worth it.
Starting this post off with the disadvantages of solar energy, here are the main downsides to getting solar power.
Expensive with Further Funds Needed for Solar Energy Storage
This is probably the number one concern with solar as a source of energy: the initial cost is not a small investment. Almost everyone struggles to come to terms with the start-up costs of incorporating solar power with good quality batteries into their homes; however, in the long run, you do end up saving money on electricity costs and help slow the speed of global warming. Living in certain areas could enable you to receive tax incentives for using solar powerand moving toward energy independence from the power grid and specific areas may even be eligible for government-funded schemes to bring down the price still further. There is, of course, always the option of financing. Having said all that, it is a substantial sum of money but an investment none the less. The other issue with solar power is the additional cost for energy storage. Without energy storage, the power generated can only be used in the daytime or when the sun is out. Energy storage quite literally stores the energy for consumption during the night but to include this, you will need to pay more money. What many people do when they have solar panels is to skip the installation of energy storage and instead sell their extra power generated throughout the day to a utility company. The utility company then pays that person in credits which are used for the use of the company’s energy during the night, saving further on energy bills. This option is, of course, the more cost-effective route; however, you are still somewhat dependent on a utility company, and those living in rural areas might not be able to take this route.
Space Is Needed
Solar powered devices typically take up quite a lot of space. Solar panels are mostly installed on the roof, which makes it efficient for catching sunlight and also doesn’t interrupt any of the outside areas. However, the space that they do acquire on a roof is the majority of it. And, if you happen to need work doing on the roof, they will need to be disconnected and brought down. Other solar powered devices are usually installed on the ground but typically need to be in the most sun-exposed area of a yard which is more than likely the area in which the household likes to sit. Individual devices aren’t particularly pretty to look at either.
The fact that solar powered devices are weather dependent is probably considered both a pro and a con. The downside to being weather-dependent is that the energy is going to be pretty sporadic on rainy or overcast days. Certain areas will benefit from solar powered energy a lot more than others. On the plus side, you will always have power as long as the sun is in the sky and even longer if you have sufficient energy storage in place.
So, what are the solar energy pros? Looking at solar power in a more positive light there are many benefits to having solar power in your home which many people feel outweigh the cons of it.
We are at a time where we need to do everything we can to take better care of the planet. It’s a scary thought of what will happen if it continues to be destroyed at the rate that it is going. A major benefit of solar power systems is that it does not cause pollution. As well as running very quietly, there are no harmful gases given off from solar power. In the home, this means that carbon monoxide is significantly reduced. When solar power is in effect, it massively impacts the dependency on the traditional non-renewable energy sources.
Reduces Electricity Bills and Boosts Property Price
At the beginning of this article, we discussed how the price of solar energy was a great concern for people and now we can look at how they also save money later down the line. No matter which system you choose, incorporating solar power into the home will save money on electricity bills. If you have an energy storage device put in place, you stand to save more. What’s more, you can always sell your excess power to utility companies. On top of the money that you save on bills, having a home that utilizes solar energy can actually fetch more money on the market. Retail experts have said that solar panels can add up to $20,000 to the price of a property which means that a large chunk of the initial investment can be made back should you decide to sell.
Little Maintenance Required
Almost all of the solar powered systems available today require little to no maintenance whatsoever. Sometimes, depending on the climate, residential solar panels may need a light clean a couple of times throughout the year but that is pretty much it. Other than that, they are just left to do their job. Most solar power manufacturers in the United States offer a warranty that lasts from 20–25 years. That is a huge benefit for people investing in solar powered devices because, should anything happen after spending all that money, then you are completely covered.
There are, of course, many more advantages to solar energy but as you can see the pros far outweigh the cons. It’s vital that you take into account the climate of your area when purchasing solar powered devices as not everything is suitable for every region. Looking towards the future, we can expect some significant advancements within the solar power industry as a lot of nanotechnology innovation and quantum physics are set to transform the efficiency of this amazing energy source for the better.