The decision to convert your home to solar energy is a responsible one and should not be taken in haste. For the transition to bring the expected results and for solar panels for the home to become a profitable investment, you need to act according to the plan. We will write a step-by-step guide on how to convert your home to solar panels.
1. Evaluate the energy efficiency of your home
You consume a lot of energy and think that switching to solar stations will help you save. But first of all, you need to evaluate how efficiently you use electricity at the moment. We are sure that if you check where your electricity and money go, you will find “black holes” that suck it up. What most often increases energy consumption:
- Lighting – if you use incandescent bulbs for lighting, then the consumption of electricians at home will be very high. It is necessary to switch to energy-saving lamps in all fixtures, both internal and external;
- Household appliances – most often, older models of washing machines and dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, and other units consume more energy. Switching to modern economic models will help reduce consumption;
- Heating and insulation – if you heat your house with electricity, but do not take care of the insulation of the walls, roof, and basement, then you can directly say that you are “wasting money.”
You can only start planning the transition to solar energy after conducting a thorough investigation and eliminating all the causes of the increase in energy consumption. Otherwise, it just doesn’t make sense.
2. Assess your potential
Do not rush to find out what is the average cost of solar panel installation. You first need to find out how potentially your house is ready for the installation of a solar station:
- Trees – even if your trees and trees in neighboring areas do not block the sunlight now, they can continue to grow and eventually shade the installation. Most often, specialists perform such measurements;
- Roof condition – the roof may simply be too old or unreliable to install solar panels, in which case you will either face additional costs for repairs and strengthening or will need to look for an alternative installation site;
- Requirements for obtaining consent to install solar panels from neighbors or a homeowners association. First of all, find out if your state has a ban on limiting the use of solar energy. If not, you will have to negotiate with your neighbors.
To improve the efficiency of passing this stage of preparation, contact a specialist. He uses special tools and software to determine the potential of each individual home. Its result will be more accurate.
3. Determine your solar energy needs
After optimizing the efficiency of the house, that is, everything that we talked about in the first step, you must determine how much solar energy you need. The easiest, most accurate, and proven way is to analyze the electricity bills for the year. You must understand in which season the consumption is more and in which it is less. It is not necessary to take for granted that more electricity is consumed in winter than in summer. If you actively cool all rooms and use an electric car to travel out of town in the summer, then this season, the bills will definitely not be less, and maybe even more.
Do not rely entirely on advice, especially if it does not come from professionals. Read home solar panel reviews to get an idea of the possibilities of solar stations.
4. Assess your financial capabilities.
If you have found out how much solar panels cost on average and realized that this is beyond your financial capabilities, you should not give up on this idea. You may consider one of the following options.
Preferential conditions and loans
Find out if your state has solar conversion programs. Are there any tax breaks or profitable loans? Each state has its own conditions, so you need to check with your local level for more details.
Solar panel rental
You do not have to pay for the panels themselves and their installation, and you will only pay a monthly rental fee. But in this case, all tax and other benefits become unavailable to you.
Joint solar station
You can negotiate the installation of solar panels with several of your neighbors or at the local level. When all conditions are agreed upon, several homeowners combine their purchasing opportunities and establish a common station on their territory or outside it.
Solar Energy Purchase Agreement
PPA is not a rental but a purchase of energy from a solar battery that is installed on your roof or territory. The company installs the station and sells its energy to you at a favorable rate. That is, you receive those smaller bills, and you pay not to the utility company but to the company that owns the solar panels.
Once you have decided on how you will solve the financial issue, you can proceed to the next step.
5. Choose an installer company
At this stage, you need to be as careful as possible. Correctness of calculations, quality of installation, long-term operation, maintenance, and solar panel home installation cost will depend on the correct choice.
The ideal contractor must meet the following requirements:
- The company has all the necessary certificates and permits;
- The company knows how and can get all permissions for connection and knows all the details of the procedure in your area;
- The company has reviews from customers in your region;
- The Company has no pending or active litigation;
- The company gives a guarantee for your solar station, which exactly and for how long.
If you have found such a company and the average cost of home solar panels suits you, you can safely start switching to solar energy right now.
The solar power system is really very profitable, especially in the long run. If you responsibly approach the process of preparing and switching to solar energy, you will definitely be satisfied with the savings and uninterrupted operation. Be sure to first improve the energy efficiency of the house, and only then switch to a solar station. It is also advisable to include a resource when calculating battery power if you are planning to buy an electric car, expand the area of the house, and do other activities that may lead to an increase in consumption.