Whether you're looking to reduce your carbon footprint, lower your energy bills or increase your home's ROI, homeowners everywhere are considering the benefits of using solar power. However, the process can be daunting and sometimes costly. In this article, we can help break down the issues and factors that need to be considered when using solar energy.
Are the Weather in My Area Conducive to Solar Energy?
Believe it or not, the climate and weather in your area can greatly affect your home's solar production. Remember, solar power relies on the sun to work. In turn, homeowners in cloudy and rainy areas may not see as much solar production unless their solar installations are tailored to their climate.
If your state's weather is cloudy, you can still benefit from solar power, but with the help of extra panels to compensate for the cloud cover. Remember, if you live in a cloudy state, your energy usage is likely to be less than in a sunny state, which means the cost of solar production can still balance out. If you live where solar panels can use extra power, consider using more efficient panels.
Is My Home Suitable for Solar Panels?
When measuring a home's solar viability, factors to consider include roof structure, roof orientation and nearby shade. Solar panels need some space to increase efficiency. The amount of space required depends on how big your home is and how much electricity you want to produce. Typically, the minimum area required for a roof is about 200 square feet. This space should be free of any obstructions, such as chimneys or pipes.
The orientation of the roof and sunlight are also important factors for a home to use solar energy. For example, a north-facing roof sees much less sunlight than a south-facing roof. Roofs facing south, southeast and southwest are the best options for installing solar panels. Finally, homeowners should consider the amount of shade near the roof and how this might affect the amount of sunlight hitting the panels. Factors such as trees, neighboring houses, and other tall objects can affect the amount of sunlight a roof receives.
Will I Need to Get a New Roof?
You should inspect the roof to make sure it can handle the weight of the planned solar panels, especially if you will be replacing the roof within the next five years. Otherwise there is no need to add a whole new roof to this project. However, check to see if your roof will affect your warranty by having portable solar panels installed.
Will Solar Power Be My Only Source of Electricity?
If you opt for an online solar panel system, your home will be connected to your city grid to ensure a constant source of power when needed. This is especially useful if you live in an area with little sunlight.