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Top 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Switching to Solar Energy

| 5/17/2016 1:47:00 PM

Solar Mistakes to Avoid

More and more homeowners are making the switch to solar energy for their home. As electricity prices rise and solar panel prices fall, installing a residential solar PV system is becoming a sound economic decision for many homeowners across the country, translating into considerable savings over the 25 year lifetime of the panels.

Installing a solar energy system for your home is a big decision, the value of which is similar to a car, so you want to do your homework and make the best decision for your situation. Here are a few of the mistakes to avoid when switching to solar energy.

1. Having Unreasonable Expectations

While solar panels for your home can be a great investment, it’s important to realize that, depending on where you live, it can be one that takes many years to pay off. But remember, most solar panels have a lifetime of about 25 years, sometimes even longer, so time is on your side when it comes to recouping your money. Having a reasonable expectation of the payback period will help you in your discussions with installers and in deciding how to finance your system, as different financing options will affect the profitability of your investment.

Sunmetrix Discover can help you figure out how much solar energy you can produce with different size systems, how that compares to your electricity consumption, and what that translates into in terms of savings. All of this information, along with the expected payback period, can also be found in our Solar Report for homeowners.

When it comes to unreasonable expectations, another factor that homeowners often overlook is the variability of the sun. The output of your solar system will vary from day to day and from season to season, as it is affected by cloud cover as well as the number of daylight hours. Understanding this variability and knowing what to expect for your location will help you in managing your expectations with regard to the profitability of your system.

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