How much do solar panels cost
Posted by Solar energy guru | Filed under Solar panels & photovoltaic cells
With so much talk about solar power these days, you may be asking yourself if solar power is for you. This will depend on many factors, including whether you can afford it, and how much it will help you in the long run.
Depending on several factors, solar panels can cost a few bucks per watt, on average about $5. For a solar panel system of 200 watts, that’s about $1,000. However, installation adds to this cost to nearly double the cost per wattage.
Bear in mind, however, that the government offers many incentives for the use of solar panels, in some cases about half the cost. In addition, once you get the thing installed, over time it pays for itself because you are no longer purchasing electricity. In many cases even, you can sell the electricity you’re making back to your electricity company.
Keep in mind that it’s still a good idea to be connected to your utility’s power grid of possible because solar power can decrease on overcast or inclement weather days. Also bear in mind that these devices will last several decades with little significant maintenance over time after the initial set-up.
However, you must also consider how much in fuel and energy savings you are making when you switch to solar power, and how little maintenance these solar panels cost you. There really is no straightforward answer on how much solar panels cost, because it depends on the size of your home, your energy needs, the kind of materials you use and whether you install yourself or hire a professional.
In addition, solar power in the home raises the value of the home. Solar value in the pool raises the value of the pool. These things also must be considered when purchasing solar panels.
One of the most cost-effective ways to use solar power is through solar pool heaters, which average about $3,000 to $4,000 to install. Solar powered home heaters can cost as much as $3,000 but the low operating costs on a monthly basis could be worth it to some homeowners. Solar home heating gets a little more tricky and really depends on the size of the home, insulation and other factors. It can cost from $25,000 to $100,000, and really efficient devices can provide from 40 to 80% of your home’s heating needs.
To power a home on solar power, 1-kilowatt systems cost from $10,000 to $15,000; a 2-kilowatt system from $16,000 and $20,000; and a 5-kilowatt from $35,000 to $45,000. To determine the kind of system you need, there is a simple formula you use by collecting all of your electricity for a year’s time. You take the total kilowatt usage and divide by 365 (days in a year). From there, you determine how many hours of sunlight your location gets daily and divide your figure by that amount. That number will tell you how many kilowatts your solar system requires. A comprehensive solar remodeling of a home can cost from $100,000 to $200,000.
Government incentives include the Energy Policy Act, which gives a 30% tax credit or up to $2,000 of the cost of the solar system. This, combined with local government incentives may make it worth a homeowner’s while to consider solar power.
Last but not least, for those concerned wit the environment, there is the added benefit that they are doing something good for the Earth. There also is the sense of security that comes with not being at the mercy of energy demand. Are solar panels for everyone? Probably not, but as solar panel technology becomes more commonplace and more people can afford them, they very well could be the future.