In a city like Las Vegas, the sun is a powerful tool and it can either harm or help, depending on how you use it. In the summer, many homeowners see their electricity bills skyrocket from heavy air conditioning and energy usage. But savvy homeowners who choose solar panel installation harness the sun’s relentless power to help defray those high costs. Unfortunately, there are a lot of myths and misinformation surrounding solar, so let’s debunk some of those right now.
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Myth #1 “A solar system costs too much money”
Most homeowners invest in their homes because of the intrinsic value in doing so. Solar is no different, as it’s an investment over 25 years or more. Although it’s an upfront cost, that investment will come back in the long term from savings of hundreds or thousands of dollars a year on your energy bill. As an added bonus, it also increases the value of your home.
Some installers offer better warranties than others, and obviously you want to deal with a company that has both a solid reputation and a long standing in the community. After all, what’s the point of purchasing a 20-year warranty from a company that won’t be around in five?
Then there are the many local, state, and federal incentive and rebate possibilities to explore, which help defer that upfront cost. For example, a 30 percent federal tax credit is available for Nevada residents who install solar. Also, if you generate more electricity than you use each month through solar, “net metering” can earn you money back from your power company.
Myth #2 “Solar panels don’t produce energy during cloudy days or the winter”
This common myth assumes the sun has to be beating down consistently for 14 hours per day to generate sufficient electricity. Not true – even in the long, cold winters of Alaska, solar is still a viable option. Here in Las Vegas, there is enough electricity generated to power an average home throughout the year, even in winter with fewer daylight hours.
Myth #3 “Solar panels are high maintenance”
Some people considering solar may believe that solar panels are high maintenance. Nothing could be further from the truth. When you hire a quality installer, your panels will not require any maintenance at all. In fact, another benefit of solar is that the panels themselves, while soaking up the hot sun’s rays, actually protect your roof from that heat, diverting it into even more energy savings.
Myth #4 “Solar panels are only for homeowners”
If you rent or live in a condominium, community solar programs provide a single, shared solar array that multiple tenants can benefit from. The cost of purchase and installation is divided among all participants, and the arrays are installed either on the building or in a different offsite location. Every tenant in the building can then buy into the shared system in a tiered fashion depending on their budget, and the shared portion can be negotiated during the sale of your condo.
Myth #5 “Solar incentives are too complicated to use”
The 30 percent federal tax credit is available in all 50 states and is a key incentive to going solar. The IRS.gov website will direct you to Form 5695 and provide clear instructions to get you started in the application process. In addition to the federal tax credit, there are other municipal and state incentives available, so it’s worth doing a bit of research on these as well. It’s also a great question for your chosen installer.
Myth #6 “Solar panels allow the electricity to work during a power blackout”
In order for solar panels to provide electricity during power blackouts, you need a residential solar battery. Just like your car battery, solar batteries store extra power for later use. A higher battery capacity allows you to store more solar energy. With a battery, you can store excess electricity rather than sending it back to the grid. When the panels are drawing more power than you need, it charges the battery for when the panels aren’t producing electricity, such as at night. In this way, you will only send power back to the grid when the battery is fully charged. Conversely, you’ll only pull electricity from the grid when the battery is drained.
How Can Solar Enhance Your Home and Lower Utility Bills?
Solar isn’t for everyone. Some may be concerned about the cost or the perceived complexity of incentives. But as you’ll notice just walking down the street, its popularity is growing every day, as homeowners (and even renters) are discovering the long-term cost savings and increased property value. Even if you’re skeptical about solar, it’s worth the time to put in some calls and do a bit of internet research. If you are still wondering if a solar panel system is the right choice for your home, download the below content offer or request a free quote. We look forward to hearing from you!