Clean and renewable energy is great and should definitely be encouraged, but is it wise to put solar panels on your roof? There are a lot of financial factors to account for before deciding to install them for your home, and it’s important to do your geographical research as well. Your roof is one of the most vital parts of your home, so before you harness the sun, you may want to make sure you won’t get burned by the decision.
Of course, you don’t want to be without power, so you need to receive enough sunlight to provide you with electricity. First, you’ll want to check how many sunny days your region receives in an average year. Next, check your immediate surroundings. Is the east or west roof open to a large amount of sunlight throughout the day, or do trees or other buildings block the sun?
Some states simply don’t receive enough sunlight and some houses are too enclosed to make the investment worth chasing. Some portions of your roof may be positioned perfectly, but there isn’t enough rooftop area to justify purchasing the panels. The last thing any homeowner wants is to be without power during a stormy week.
The installation fee of solar panels varies, but you’ll want to know some basic math. On average, an American home uses around 1 kiloWatt of electricity per hour (kWh). In a given month (forget February), that averages out to about 720-730 kW a month. A kW costs about a dime in most states. All in all, the typical electricity bill is anywhere from $70-$80 a month.
A safe estimate of most installation costs is about $9 per watt. Translate that to a 6kW panel and you’re looking at at least a $30,000 venture with some discounts. It’s expensive, but there’s no arguing that it doesn’t pay for itself in the long run and you probably won’t pay all that at once. You have to wait several years, but, depending on your utilities’ rules, you could pay nothing for electricity each month. Again, this is all dependent on where you live, what your city allows, how much you purchase, and so forth.
Before you can even install solar panels, you want a dependable roof. Most installers won’t even attempt to put a panel on a roof they don’t deem safe and up to date. Solar panels do protect whatever part of the roof they are covering, and they even keep attics cooler.
However, when it comes to replacing your roof, the cost can hurt you. Solar panels have to be handled and removed carefully when replacing your roof. Also, you should probably bank on your roof requiring repair or replacement at least once over the course of your panels stint on top of your house. Solar panels require a lot of thought regarding the future, so you’ll have to weigh these in when making your decision.
If solar panels seem like a great idea to you, then you’ll want to make sure your roof is in perfect condition. We can ensure that any installer won’t find faults with the work we do on your home while you prepare for clean energy.