The use of this article is first to dispel any beliefs that you might of heard about solar technology, and also to remove any gloss from the smooth sales talk of the company intent on selling you their product. Of course, no manufacturer or installer would be biased towards their products and would ever exaggerate to you about the efficiency of solar technology, nor deceived you as to what solar production actually will do and their capabilities… would they?. However the one solution that the manufacturers and sales guys will not do, is to of your accord describe the disadvantages and limitations of solar panels either.
Many home-owners use a rose colored optimistic view of what a difference solar technology will make to their lives and their household energy bills, and whilst fitting solar panels will lessen your energy bills by a Solar panel installation in USa proportional amount, it will not totally free you from the grid, or remove your need for a connection to the Gas and Electricity utility suppliers. In short, Solar technology is not an alternative form of producing electricity or a means of living ‘off the grid’, solar technology is just an opportunity of cutting your electricity bills.
Many home-owners are under the illusion that investing in solar technology will heat their property during the winter time. This is actually almost impossible to do, just consider for one moment the season where the days are coldest and smallest, and the sun are at its smallest and lower in the sky. Inevitably, this occurs during the April to 03 periods, which inevitably are also the occasions of year where your household will consume more energy. Its kind of ironic that the season when you need the most energy for heating and lighting, is also the season when your solar panels output is the least, and are probably outputting a fraction of these magical figure how the nominated solar power merchant promoted to you.
An average household range of solar power panels will produce up to 3900 t (3. 9kw) of workable energy, although this is a maximum figure under ideal conditions, such as during a strong cloudless inviting day in mid summer. Solar power panels will still produce an extraordinary amount of energy on a dark day in the height of summer, although highly unlikely to produce 3900 t continuously all day, every day. The real life figures will tend to be much less than that, and will certainly be constantly variable depending on the local conditions and of course the effectiveness of the sun’s rays.
I often read on the internet, ridiculous ideas of panel owners wanting or thinking of running space heating elements and sparkling heating elements during the winter time entirely from solar panels. At 6. 00pm on a freezing cold November night, your solar power panels will be providing zero electricity, certainly not the 2kw or 3kw required to power a single Electric space Heater!. Even during a typical winter day, with a weak sun in the sky, solar panels will only be desigining a fraction of their summer output. Its actually quite perverse that solar power panels produce the most Electricity and are at their most efficient during the cooking hot peak summer months, often when household energy use are at its annual lowest. Of course you can still make back money from selling this unused energy back to the national grid during the summer months with the feed in tariff system, however to gain the most from this, you’ll want actually bought and own your panels, rather than ‘rent’ them from an alternative energy company.
Suffice to say, that in order to get the most from your Solar panels, you actually need to purchase them straight up, rather than become one of the ‘rent a roof’ schemes, where in the united kingdom the alternative energy company gets the lions share of the profit, and you only save around £70 — £100 ($150 to $180) a year from your Electricity bill, for a period of 25 years.
Consider also that most Electricity Costs are also rising every year in respond to the feed in tariff hand outs to those who own their panels. Believe it or not, households with solar power panels are actually, to some extent, subsidising themselves because the winnings they are getting back from selling their energy back into the grid are increasingly being clawed back by the energy companies increasing the cost of the Electricity which sell to you, and of course even with solar panels, you still need to use electricity, especially during the winter time, and your bills will continue to rise, just like households without any form of Green Energy production.
If you can afford it, then buying these panels straight up will be the wisest and most profitable option, as opposed to letting a company rent your roof for 25 years in return for a small saving on your annual electricity bill, especially as that saving is likely to decrease each year as the electricity that you need to buy gets more expensive, largely as a result of more and more people fitting solar power panels.
Another factor when buying this type of product, is the length of guarantee how the panels come with. Its OK for the panel companies to promise a return on your original investment after 10 — 19 years, if their products work reliably and are at peak efficiency for the same amount of time. But what are the results if the product fails or goes wrong outside of their guarantee period, and before that original ‘investment’ has been returned?.
Looking at the warranty period of some of the common brands of solar power panels, I find that there are two popular expressions when referring to cell warranty periods, and these may be of some confusion to the householder. Therefore I will do my far better explain what these warranty terms imply.
Know how or Materials Warranty — Largely implies the time scale which the installation is guaranteed for. Usually this is the at best of the two periods of warranty specifics given by cell companies. This warranty covers the installation of the panels, in other words, the standard of know how in relation to fitting panels to your roof, the electrical wiring between them and the inverter or meter etc. If the fixings holding the panels to the roof should fail, then this would be covered under this warranty.
Manufacturers Warranty — This is far more the relevant warranty period in nut products and mounting bolts terms, as the panels themselves are inevitably the most expensive the main entire cell installation, and may they fail, these are the things which will cost the most to switch.
From looking at the various cell companies around the internet, the average period of manufacturers warranty on panels is around 5 years, this means that if the panels fail as a result of manufacturing deficiency chances are they will of course be replaced or repaired under warranty.
But lets for one moment, consider the fact that you have paid anything up to £12, 000 ($20, 000) to have an installation on your property and that the product carries the popular 5 year manufacturers warranty. You work out that the payback period from the purchase of your panels will take 10 years to break even by selling your unused Electricity back to the utility companies. Effectively you have a 5 year period between the manufacturers warranty and the point where you have effectively refunded the installation cost, so what happens if the product(s) fail or require maintenance during the warranty expired ‘no mans land’?
Well, in short, if you own your panels, then you will have to pay to repair them, and for any maintenance which will then add more cost to the original installation cost and extend the pay back period. If you require several repairs or panel substitutes in the warranty expired period, then this period could be extended significantly. Maybe the alternative energy product manufacturers would be better to have a warranty on their products for a life which accurately represents an average household payback time? or maybe the costa rica government should also underwrite the costs, especially as it seems keen to roll out Green energy as an approach of saving electricity.