Debunking Solar Energy Myths: Common Solar Concerns
Solar energy technology has been around for longer than most people anticipate. In fact, early solar energy technology has been around since the late 1800s, and commercially available solar panels became available in the mid-1950s. That means that solar panels have enjoyed plenty of time for the technology to be improved upon and the costs to drop. Unfortunately, it also means there has been plenty of time for false information to circulate. Here are a few of the most common solar myths and questions we hear, as well as the answers.
1. Solar panels do not work on cloudy, rainy, or snowy days.
This is, fortunately, not true. While there is less sunlight to absorb, solar panels can still work during inclement weather and on overcast days. Solar panels are generally installed at an angle so snow will slide off rather than obscure the photovoltaic cells, so your solar cells will continue to absorb the rays that filter through the clouds. Generally, your solar panels will generate more energy on sunny days to help offset the lower production of cloudy days, so you will not see much of an impact.
2. Solar panels require a lot of maintenance.
Maybe they did at one point, but not anymore! Solar panel companies know that their products will be sitting outside through all kinds of weather, so they are made to withstand everything from high winds to regular snow storms. If you are concerned that a Colorado hail storm will damage your solar array, keep two things in mind: solar panels are built to last, and most come with a warranty or maintenance plan to help for damage that may happen.
3. A solar panel system will damage my roof.
If this was a true concern, it would make more sense to install solar panels elsewhere. No, installing solar panels on your roof will not irrevocably damage it—as long as they are installed by a certified professional, of course. Our technicians are constantly staying up to date on best practices and keeping their certifications up to date, so while we will need to drill some holes into your roof to install your solar array, we know how to install them to protect both your roof and the solar panel system.
4. Solar panels make a lot of noise.
We do not understand how this particular myth became a concern, as there are no moving parts or loudly whirring fans included in a solar power system. Solar panel systems are pretty darn close to silent. You may notice a slight buzzing sound from the inverter, but it is a noise comparable to your heater kicking on; it’s barely noticeable.
5. Installing solar panels will decrease the value of my house.
This may have been true when solar arrays were still a new technology, but now that solar panel systems have become more widespread, having a system installed is more likely to increase the value of your home, not decrease it. A study from the Department of Energy shows that home buyers are willing to pay, on average, $15,000 more for a home with a solar photovoltaic system than a comparably home without one.
6. Solar energy systems are too expensive.
We have touched on this already, but this is another instance in which previous assumptions have simply carried over. The modern solar array generally costs less per month than the average household utility bill. Once the savings have paid for the the expense of the system, you can expect to continue to enjoy years of savings. The average solar panel system lifespan is around 25 years, but that number is growing every day and many systems long outlast the expected lifespan. Add in the available incentives and rebates on solar panels, and the overall expense can seem pretty paltry in comparison to the savings.
This is only the start, as well. RGS Energy has been around long enough that we have heard all the crazy myths and misinformation. Let us set the record straight! Contact us today to learn more about residential solar panel systems.
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