Over the last several decades, homeowners, business owners, and organizations have discovered the numerous benefits of solar power. People across the United States are taking advantage of everything a solar panel system offers. But they likely didn't make a snap decision and jump headfirst into solar energy.
Before they decided, they researched the subject at length and determined the benefits outweighed the risks. But what are the advantages of using solar power? Keep reading to learn those benefits and why go solar.
What is Solar Power?
When the sun shines, it provides energy that is converted into thermal or electrical power. Solar power is the cleanest and most widely available renewable energy source. Luckily, in the United States, some of the best solar resources in the world can be found.
Solar panels can capture the power of the sun to use for many things, including the following:
Providing an inviting and comfortable indoor environment
Heating water for various domestic, commercial, or industrial use
It is a limitless source that doesn't result in harmful effects on the environment.
Top 12 Reasons to go Solar
1. The Federal Solar Tax Credit
One main reason you should consider going solar now is because of the federal solar tax credit. Currently, it covers 26% of the initial cost of the solar panel system. However, don't wait too long to make your decision because, in 2023, it will be reduced to 22% and will expire in 2024 for residential solar power.
This is the single most important solar incentive for many residents when deciding whether to go solar.
2. Decreases Your Energy Bills
Grid electricity seems to get more expensive by the day. When you have your own solar panel system, you generate your own power and protect yourself against future electricity price hikes.
Your solar panels will generate power as the sun shines down onto them every day. This can reduce or eliminate your electricity bills completely.
Since your solar panel system will last about 25 years, that can lead to substantial savings over the years. You'll continue to save money while those without solar energy must pay the increasing power fees.
3. Battery Backup Keeps You Powered
Battery storage is similar to a traditional generator. It keeps your lights on during a power outage. Battery storage allows you to store excess solar power generated throughout the day. In the event you lose power, your appliances will continue running, preventing the loss of hundreds of dollars in wasted food!
As a bonus, the 26% federal solar tax credit also applies to solar energy storage batteries. These systems have become significantly cheaper over the years due to the advancements in technology.
4. Add Value to Your Home
Homes with a solar panel system have been selling for about 5% more than similar homes without solar power. This suggests that providing solar power is worth almost $10,000 in property value! Even if you're considering going solar, but know you might be relocating, don't rule out installation just yet. It might be worth the investment.
5. Solar Power Is Better for the Environment
Unlike fossil fuels, solar energy doesn't expel harmful toxins into the air. It replaces energy sources like oil, gas, and coal with renewable energy sources to combat the use of fossil fuels in generating electricity.
6. Lower Operating Costs
One of the most popular reasons to go solar is the reduced energy costs. Solar panel systems produce enough electricity to offset your traditional electricity usage, reducing or eliminating your electric bill. You'll have more money to finally take that trip you've dreamed of or make additional home improvements.
7. Requires Minimal Maintenance
Solar panels are just like any other appliance and require occasional maintenance and cleaning to operate at maximum capacity. However, there is practically no day-to-day maintenance. This means it is less problematic for you, and you can focus on your family, business, and financial savings.
8. Flexible Financial Options
Various financial institutions offer financial plans to help complete your investment. Some of those options require little to no down payment.
A financial plan will help you finance this project. Whether you have the funds available to pay cash and own it outright or need to lease it over 20 years, there's a financing solution available for anyone who wants to go solar.
9. Money While You're Using Solar
Because of the incredible solar incentives available in the United States, solar panels can eventually lead to a profit, helping you pay off the cost of the system faster.
Solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) and net metering are two additional ways that help you earn credits toward your bill or extra cash in your pocket — just for allowing your system to produce electricity!
If you live in an area where you can get these benefits, you'll notice short and long-term returns from your solar panel investment.
10. Step Towards Energy Independence
Resources like fossil fuels are limited resources, and they will become exhausted one day. Meanwhile, the sun will continue to shine for several thousand years. If we rely on the sun to give us power, we become energy independent.
11. It Creates Jobs
Over the years, the solar industry has grown exponentially. This means that it has created a multitude of jobs. In fact, compared to nonrenewable energy sources like coal, solar power has created more job opportunities. Here's how.
The market for solar panels has increased. This caused the need for installation services to rise as well. When there is a greater demand for services, the job market will grow because more employees are needed to place solar panels in homes and businesses.
12. Save Money With Solar
Numerous studies have been conducted to determine the potential savings you can gain by investing in solar panels. The conclusion is that over a 20-year period, you can save an extra $22,000! This is based on nationwide averages, so if you live in a state that pays higher rates for solar energy, you could save even more!
Disadvantages of Going Solar
Everyone deserves to make an informed decision, which means you need all of the information. While there are numerous benefits to going solar, there are still a few downsides that we need to explore.
1. Installation Can Be Expensive
Investing in solar panels is like buying any large-scale appliance. They are a significant investment. But, when you do your homework and compare a few products, committing to solar panels will provide you with savings for many years.
Even with the 26% federal solar tax credit, you can expect installation costs to be around $20,000. But this is influenced by factors like the size of your home and the number of panels required.
2. No Nighttime Energy Generation
It seems obvious, but we have to point it out. No electricity can be generated without access to the sun. This is an even more crucial factor if you choose to go 100% solar and energy independent. This means you'll also need energy storage devices, like lithium-ion batteries, which will create an additional installation expense.
3. Storage Is Expensive
Backup batteries for solar panels can cost thousands of dollars for one, and you may need multiple batteries, depending on your current electricity bills. It is a costly investment because it is such a modern piece of technology. Like most technology, the cost will decrease and become more affordable with time.
4. Difficult to Move After Installation
It's not impossible to move your solar panels after being installed. However, it is quite a challenge. They are custom-designed to fit a specific roof, and a new roof might not be the same style.
Instead, the value of the solar panels will be included in the price of the home. This means you'll receive a greater return on your investment and potentially have enough to pay for a new set of solar panels.
As you can see, the list of pros far outweighs the cons of going solar. Yes, it is an investment, but it does begin to pay for itself over time. If you've considered adapting to a renewable energy source, solar power might be the perfect solution.
Get into the Rhythm
In Texas, everything is bigger — including your options for electricity providers. You always have the power to choose, but we think the choice is simple. At Rhythm, we have several energy plans that will help make choosing your provider easier than ever.
Once you've gone solar and chosen Rhythm, you can participate in our solar buyback plan. It pays you just for producing solar power! You'll see a credit on your monthly electricity bill based on the amount of solar energy your system has produced. Plus, there are never any hidden fees. The price you're given is the price you'll pay!
We have knowledgeable customer service representatives available seven days a week. If you ever have questions about your bill, we've got you covered. Contact us today to learn more about our amazing renewable energy plans and find out which one may be right for you!