As solar panels have become more affordable, more people are keen to make use of this environmentally friendly technology. However, as the technology isn’t quite widespread as of yet, there is a lack of education about the installation process and requirements that prospective purchasers need to consider to determine if solar energy will be suitable for them.
Solar panel installation is a big commitment. You will be investing money in a system that is meant to power your home. Under the right circumstances, this investment is well worth it. You will be saving yourself money in the long run as well as having having a daily positive impact on the environment through your choice of renewable energy use.
However, solar panels are not a toaster that you can just replace if you end up not liking the model you bought. It’s important that you think the logistics through and ensure that your solar energy system will work for you.
Is your roof structurally sounds?
Your solar panels will be mounted on your roof, so the first thing you need to consider is whether or not your roof is in any shape to support them.
Try to match up the warranty on your solar panels with the warranty or life cycle of your roof in order to minimize repair costs. If you know you will need roof repairs or renovations in a few years, it’s best to do them before you install the solar panels.
What direction does your roof face?
As solar panels require sunlight in order to generate power, you need to make sure that your roof is in a position so that the sun will be able to have access to the panels. This means installing them in a direction where they will receive the most light and ensuring that your roof isn’t shaded.
North facing roofs are best for solar installation in Australia as they receive the most sun throughout the day. However, there are some cases where you can make a south facing roof work depending on the tilt.
Consult with your solar panel provider to assess whether your roof will be suitable.
How will you pay for your solar panels?
As solar panels become more popular, financing options have expanded to make them more affordable.
Buying your solar panels outright will provide the most return on investment in the long term as you will benefit directly from your energy savings and be paid for excess energy. However, solar leasing has become another option that makes panels more affordable. In this model, rather than paying up front, panels are paid for in monthly installments.
Have you found a trusted retailer…
As solar is a big investment for you and not yet a widespread technology, it’s important that you choose an experienced retailer that knows what they’re doing and knows how to address your needs.
Speak with and get quotes from more than one company to compare options and contracts before signing on.
And what warranties do they offer?
You should find companies that have been in the solar industry awhile and will be around throughout the lifetime of your system. Solar panels generally come with very long warranties, so if your panels end up needing maintenance in 15-20 years, you want a company that will be there to fix them.
Solar technology is becoming more popular and desirable as a way to reduce energy costs and the impact we have on the environment. If you have the opportunity to make this positive change, you should first assess whether or not it will be a suitable choice for you and your home.