DIY Green Energy For Homes
 

Solar Energy Advantages And Disadvantages

Have you had a look at your utility bill lately? Chances are you’re paying far more than you ought to be in the age of alternative energy.

While energy costs have shot through the roof in recent years, you can still take back some control using solar energy.

Besides being kind on your wallet, solar energy has a lot of other benefits. That is not to say that there are no short falls with solar. Opting for solar with an informed mind will pay off both in the short and long term.

Advantages

Helps you cut energy costs - although the initial costs of a solar electric system may seem like a toll order on your finances, you’ll reap a return on investment within a few years. And depending on whether your system is a grid-tie (can sell excess power to the utility), it will make even much more economic sense and you will realize your returns within a short time. There are a number of other government incentives that are all made to make your investment a worthwhile decision.

It is eco-friendly - a typical solar power system consists of collectors, batteries, inverters and wiring. The system harnesses solar radiation and converts it into electricity without any emissions to the atmosphere. Additionally, solar energy is usually generated where it is needed, thus, no extra resources are needed to transmit the power over long distances for distribution.

It compliments grid power - while it is possible to entirely switch to solar power, it is more advantageous to use it concurrently with grid-supplied power. This offers more energy security as grid outages are not likely to heavily affect you.

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This arrangement will also see your utility bill go down drastically, or even completely erased if you produce surplus power. The beauty with a solar electric system is that it can work completely independent from the grid, yet in compliment of the grid system.

Low or no maintenance - if a solar system is properly installed, then maintenance will almost only be limited to cleaning the collectors. Solar panels are particularly very durable and moreover, most manufacturers offer generous warranties, thus, it even makes more economic sense in the long run.

Disadvantages

The main drawback of adopting a solar power system is the initial cost. While it’s a worth while investment, solar electric parts are particularly pricey - semi-conductor products used in building a solar system cost a fortune. Therefore solar is still out of reach for the vast majority of people, although prices are constantly declining by the years, thanks to aggressive government programs that are pushing for greener alternative energy sources.

The price disparity becomes apparent when compared to regular grid supplied energy. This non-renewable source generally costs less in terms of initial connection fees. To make matters worse, as grid power shortages become more rampant, solar prices become more competitive, although they are not as high as they used to be initially.

Solar energy is dependent on location. For areas with minimal sunlight through out the year, solar is not really a viable alternative. Even those that receive enough sunlight, positioning the collectors can become daunting too, especially if they can not be mounted on the roof for some reason.

At the end of the day, it’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons of solar power. But in many cases, the advantages seem to increase with time after the system has been installed.

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