There’s a lot of information out there about solar power and it can be overwhelming if you’re trying to decide whether solar is a good investment for your home. While there are lots of trustworthy websites about solar power, there are also many solar panel myths circulating. The majority of these solar panel myths aren’t based on hard evidence.
Let’s take a closer look at 5 of the top solar panel myths and straighten out the confusion.
Myth 1: Solar panels don’t work on cloudy days
What is solar power? Solar panels convert energy from the sun into a form of electricity that we can use to power our homes. Because of this, many people believe solar panels won’t work on cloudy days or in cold environments. But this is not true. Even when it’s cloudy, sunlight still travels through the clouds, reaching the solar panels.
Depending on the level of cloudiness, there will likely be a reduction in solar panel efficiency. This is because some of the solar radiation will be absorbed or reflected by the clouds. As you would expect, thick, heavier clouds (such as during a thunderstorm) will cause a greater reduction in efficiency than a light scattering of clouds.
Myth 2: Solar panels cost more than they save
A lot of people are put off solar power because they think the upfront cost is too high. However, if you consider the possible energy savings it is often a worthwhile investment in the long run.
Most solar systems have a payback period between 3-6 years. Positioning and high-quality installment play a role in this. A poorly designed or poorly installed system can affect the electricity output.
Making simple lifestyle changes can also lead to more savings. For example, running appliances like the dishwasher and washing machine during daylight hours instead of at night.
Solar panels are becoming more and more affordable as the technology becomes more widespread and accessible. What’s more, the Australian government offers rebates and incentives which can make solar more affordable for homes and commercial spaces.
Myth 3: You should wait until technology improves before investing in solar panels
Some people believe it’s not worth investing in solar power until the technology has achieved higher efficiency ratings or until battery storage options have become more affordable.
In Australia, the Government is phasing out its STC rebate scheme for solar power. What this means is every year the amount you can save on buying a solar power system decreases. It could be more expensive to go solar in the future.
Furthermore, the cost of electricity from the grid is rising. Choosing to wait until you install solar may leave you with more expensive electricity bills in the meantime. Instead, installing solar panels now can help you start saving on electricity sooner.
Myth 4: Solar panels require a lot of maintenance
Some people are reluctant to switch to solar power because they think solar panels will require a lot of effort to upkeep. Actually, solar panels don’t have any moving parts so they require very little maintenance over time.
They may need cleaning from time to time as the build-up of dirt and debris can reduce their effectiveness. Typically, cleaning your solar panels once a year is enough.
Myth 5: The manufacture of solar panels is bad for the environment
Most people understand that solar is a clean, renewable source of energy that doesn’t produce any emissions. However, some people believe that the manufacturing process for solar panels uses more energy than the solar panels produce in their lifetime. Additionally, some people argue that solar panels are bad for the environment because of the waste left over at the end of their lives.
In truth, solar panels will typically produce more energy than was required to manufacture them. As solar technologies improve and solar panels become more efficient this is even more so the case. What’s more, many manufacturers now use solar panels to power their manufacturing plants, reducing emissions right from the beginning.
Good quality solar panels are manufactured to last for 20-30 years. When they have reached the end of their life they can be recycled. Some manufacturers even offer a recycling service at no cost to the consumer.
Thinking of going solar? Chat to the solar power installation experts in Mandurah
At iBreeze, we believe in providing efficient and reliable solar power installation that you can count on. You won’t get any pushy sales reps when you talk to us. Instead, we’ll give you our expert advice about whether solar power is a good choice for your home.