Go Green with Solar Panels

For the environmentally conscious homeowner, solar panel installation is frequently at the top of the to-do list. Solar energy can reduce or even eliminate dependence on fossil fuels for your home, with all the benefits that entails. Of course, any smart homeowner will want to evaluate the costs and value of any addition to their home. Here are some starting points for your research into solar panels and whether they can work for you.

Depending on the amount of sunlight you get where you live, photovoltaics can supplement or replace your current energy system. Staying on the grid is more manageable if sunlight isn’t always dependable, but installing batteries to store energy for darker days is a worthy option. If you live far from electrical infrastructure, though, you’re better off without the grid to avoid having to pay for extending services to your location.

If you decide on solar panel installation, you’ll need to find a contractor that can install them. A solar power specialist is ideal, since not only do they need to understand the photovoltaic system itself, but they need to be a skilled electrical engineer and able to handle roof work to get the job done. You’ll also want to get your paperwork straight – find the proper permits, make arrangements with your utility company, check for any available rebates, and keep it all within local building codes.

If you’re worried that the costs make solar energy infeasible, consider looking into incentive programs from the federal and local government and from the utility company. You may be able to qualify for tax credits when using solar panels, and the utility company may let you sell excess energy back if you’re on the grid. Some states even provide grants to help fund installation.

Going green is not impossible for homeowners. Solar panel installation, between saving on energy bills and qualifying for incentive programs, can pay itself off in time. If you want to reduce your footprint on the environment, this is one option that’s within reach.