For many homes and buildings, the common phenomenon to produce energy is through sunlight. Those areas are considered lucky where there is an abundance of sunlight. However, understanding how it works is still not so popular among people. They do not know the unlimited benefits of producing own energy. The real question still remains, “Does solar power save energy”?
If we consider first law of thermodynamics, it states that energy can be transferred but it cannot be created or destroyed. Solar power is a source of energy that is renewable; it is not a method of energy conservation. In reality, it is a method that can drastically reduce our dependence on the fossil fuels.
How solar power can save you money?
Having a solar power system at your home can save you a great deal of money. You can have your own power plant if solar panels are installed at your home and they remain connected to the electrical grid. In this way, they will actually contribute to the grid. When the sun shines bright all day with no clouds in sight, solar panels can produce more energy. Any extra energy produced will automatically be transferring to the electric grid. By giving energy to the grid, you will be saving money instead of spending it.
Solar panels save energy but how much do solar panels save on electricity bills?
It depends on different factors; direct hours of sunlight and the size and angle of your roof are both important but local electricity rates play the biggest role in determining how much money you can save. The first step is to calculate how much you are spending every year on electricity bills. For example, the average annual electricity use required is approx. 10,400 kilowatt hour (kWh). Multiply that by the national average electricity rate ($0.1326 per kWh) and you will find that one home spends over $1,856 a year on electricity alone.
You have to keep in mind the volatile nature of electricity prices and determine the increase in electricity rates in the coming years. When you compare cost of utility electricity with home solar, also consider the increasing rates of electricity. Over the past decade, the trend shows that there is a 2.2% per rate increase in electricity annually. When you generate your own energy, you do not have to worry about the increase in electricity rates any longer.
In cutting-off utility bills, the exposure of sunlight plays a significant role. If the sunlight falls directly on your roof and you are getting the best angle, your solar panel will have a great potential to save the energy. Usually, the location of your home, the amount of light it receives and the type of roof explain the exposure quantity. The efficiency of panels in your area can be calculated easily by using the Solar-Estimate calculator.
Go for solar panels that suit your needs and can be easily installed. Usually solar panels are not very cheap. Without tax credit or incentives, the whole cost of a 5kW system lies from $15,000 to $25,000. The high cost can easily make it up to you in the coming years. The only cost associated with your solar panel is the cost of installation and any electricity cost that your system does not off-set 100% of your electricity use. Whether your system completely off-set your electricity or not depends on the accuracy of your PV system. You can easily calculate how many solar panels you will need to get the 100 percentage.
Benefits of solar panels
Although fossil fuels are cheap and generate inexpensive electricity but it is a disaster for environment. In contrast to that, solar power is completely clean; there is no air and water pollution and no green house gas effects.
Disruptions in energy supply
As the demand for energy has been increasing, we have been forced to take energy from outside to meet the ever increasing demand. Imported energy is also not reliable. Solar energy eliminates this problem and having solar energy at home, energy supply to distant areas is not a problem anymore.
With the increased use of solar panels at home, there is a prevailing sense of self-reliance. The ability to produce energy at home makes you self-reliant. You do not have to pay heavy bills.
Furthermore, you can generate both heat and electricity from sunlight using different methods. The two important methods are solar thermal heating and PV panels. Solar thermal heating uses sunlight to heat domestic water. The pipes in solar thermal panel run the heated water to a storage cylinder for use by the household. Solar panels are installed on the roof of your house or garage. As described earlier, they gather light from the sun and energy is then converted to electricity for domestic use. The PV panels are available of two types: tiles or fixed panels. Panels are the cheaper option. These panels vary in size and length. Efficiency of energy increases with the exposure of sunlight but they can also produce electricity in areas with less sunlight.
As a responsible individual of the earth, we are clearly moving from heavy reliance on fossil fuel energy sources to electricity produced by renewable resources. The cost may be very high but the long-term pay-off will be permanent. It’s possible that eventually most of the homes will be either built with solar installations. You should not wait any longer as the upfront cost of solar system installation is easily justifiable by the long-term savings. If you have high electric bills and you are living in an area with abundant sunshine, you do not need to worry as your pay-off will come even sooner. You are just one step away from joining the solar revolution, install solar panels at your homes and make your own electricity. Having solar production at your home will put you in a better position to welcome an increasingly different future.