A growing number of homes across the United States are upgrading their roofs with residential solar panels. While some homeowners are motivated by going green and fighting climate change, others are choosing to install solar panels to gain energy independence.
No matter your motivation, residential solar panels offer many benefits that can make every homeowner happy. But, before you call up your local solar panel installers, it’s important that you first understand what you’re getting into.
Here are some important things you need to know about solar panels so that you can have a better understanding of how your future solar energy system works.
How Do Solar Panels Work?
Solar panels work kind of like plants: they capture as much sunlight as possible and process that sunlight to turn it into energy. This sounds simple enough, but the actual process by which solar panels capture the sunlight and turn it into electricity is a little more complicated.
Electricity needs a positive charge to flow. This positive charge is created in your solar panels when sunlight comes into contact with the silicone/boron materials your residential solar panels are composed of.
When sunlight comes into contact with your solar panels, the electrons in the panels become unsettled. These electrons want to return to their undisturbed state, and this dissonance creates energy.
The energy that’s created by these antsy electrons travels through an inverter and into your home. Once there, this energy can be used to power your electronics, appliances, and lights.
Because your solar panels are able to create electricity using the energy from the sun, they effectively replace your power company, who generates electricity using coal. To generate this non-renewable energy alternative, coal is burned to boil water and create high-pressure steam. This steam is then forced through a turbine to generate electricity using magnetic induction.
Not only do solar panels replace your need to use a power company but they also replace the power company’s need to burn coal to generate power. You’re helping the environment in more ways than one.
What Do I Need An Inverter For?
Your solar panels don’t generate power that can be used directly in your home. That’s what your inverter is for.
Residential solar panels generate direct current power. Your house uses alternating current power.
Your inverter will convert the direct current power from your solar panels into alternating current power that’s usable in your home. The panels maintain the alternating current voltage of 110 volts at 60 cycles (Herz) per second.
Your inverter is rated in terms of watts. You need to match your inverter correctly to the solar panels’ output voltage for it to work.
It’s worth mentioning that your inverter will lose a small amount of power as heat, which can sometimes affect its efficiency. But, never fear, inverters often come equipped with sensors that would shut it off automatically if something were to go wrong.
How Do Solar Panels Save You Money On Your Energy Bills?
Now that you know how solar panels work and what your inverter is for, you may be wondering just how your solar panels can save you money. After all, are a major investment. But don’t worry: they more than make up for the original investment.
Every kilowatt-hour of energy you generate using your residential solar panels is an hour you don’t need to buy from your power company. While you’re taking a bit of an initial cost hit with your solar panels, every kilowatt-hour of energy generated from here on out is a kilowatt-hour saved.
It’s kind of like buying a (significantly cheaper) house. Once you pay off your “mortgage,” you start building equity. The same is true of your solar panels.
Once you make a return on investment on your solar panel installation, you can save hundreds of dollars every year because you’re not paying anyone for the energy you’re using. Even as other energy costs rise due to inflation, the solar power captured by your solar panels is free for your use.
How Much Solar Power Can I Generate?
How much solar power you can generate typically depends on where you live and what your climate is like. That’s what makes Texas and California such great places for solar panel installation: both states receive tons of sunshine.
The amount of sunlight your region receives is called insolation, which depends on the angle of the sun relative to your area. For instance, the Texas Panhandle region receives 5.5 to 6.0 kilowatt-hours of sunlight per square meter every day.
Even if you live in a really sunny place, it’s still important to place your solar panels in the right spot. You want your solar panels placed where they can receive optimal, direct sunlight and won’t be shaded by other buildings, trees, or shrubs.
How Many Solar Panels Do I Need To Install?
How many solar panels you need installed largely depends on your electrical usage and your insolation. Start by determining how much electricity you use in watts.
The size of your roof will also determine the number of and the kind of panels you can mount. The cost per kilowatt-hour for energy usually goes down as you increase the size of your solar panels.
Is Installing Solar Panels Really The Best Choice For Me?
Solar panels aren’t for everybody. For instance, if your home is situated in a shaded area and you don’t receive a lot of sunlight, you might not save a lot of money on your energy bills by investing in solar panels. But, if you live in a very sunny area and your home receives plenty of sunlight, it may be a good idea to consider installing solar panels.
Just remember that, while the transition to solar power can be complex, you can keep it simple by choosing the right solar power company to install your panels. Look for a full-service solar provider that’s licensed, bonded, and insured.
Ask them any questions you need to feel secure installing solar panels on your roof. The better you feel about installing your solar panels, the more you’ll get out of using them.
Looking For The Residential Solar Panels Dallas Residents Prefer?
With climate change causing major issues for the environment, it’s crucial that everyone finds a way to do their part to become more eco-friendly. One of the best ways you can help the environment (while saving money in the process!) is by installing residential solar panels.
Since 2010, the cost to install residential solar panels has dropped by more than 70%. That means it’s more affordable than ever to invest in going solar. If you install your solar panels this year, you can even claim a 30% tax credit! Act fast, though, because come 2020, the tax credit drops to 26%.
While installing solar panels can be a big investment, there are options to reduce this initial financial hit. Solartime USA offers financing plans where you do not have any initial cost, your electric bill decreases as a result of your new solar power, and you exchange that payment as a sort of ‘solar collateral’. There are plans that take between five and twenty years to pay off with interest as low as 3.99%!
Solartime USA provides custom solar designs to ensure your new solar panels fit perfectly to your home. To learn more about our residential solar panels and custom solar designs, contact Solartime USA today.