We’re all looking for ways to live a little greener, and solar energy generation is one of the best ways of achieving that. However, knowing whether they are a good idea for your unique home and situation can be challenging.
If you’ve found this guide, you’re likely looking for some help weighing the pros and cons of installing solar panels on your roof. Don’t worry; you’re in the right place.
We’ll put your mind at ease with this complete guide to the benefits and drawbacks of solar panels for a home roof.
Should I Install Solar Panels on My Roof?
Solar power has continued to grow in popularity and drop in cost, meaning many of us are weighing up the pros and cons of installing photovoltaic (PV) panels on our roofs. The truth is, the answer to this question comes entirely down to your unique requirements. For some, the answer is a resounding yes because it means utility cost savings, increased home value, and potentially even tax breaks and incentives. For others, it might take a little longer to mull it over.
Luckily, that’s what we’re here to help with in this guide. We’ll take you through some of the most significant benefits and downsides of permanently installing solar panels on your roof.
By the end, you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed decision, so let’s get into it.
Benefits of Installing Solar Panels for Your Home
Let’s start with the positives. Here are all the reasons installing solar panels on your roof could be an excellent investment in your future. You might have already thought of some of them, but there could be some surprises here, so keep reading!
Reducing or Eliminating Electricity Bills
We will start with an obvious benefit: saving money. If you are generating your electricity via the sun, your electricity bills will immediately be lower because you will consume less power from the grid.
Solar power works in two ways, either on-grid or off-grid. On-grid solar systems allow you to claim compensation from the grid equal to the excess energy you have generated. Off-grid solar systems will enable you to direct the electricity you generate directly to the source via charged portable power stations, which essentially act as giant batteries.
Either way, after you’ve paid off your initial investment in solar, you will have more money in your pocket as you spend less on electricity bills.
If you opt for an off-grid system, you will no longer need to rely on the electrical grid for your power supply. Not only is it satisfying to be self-sufficient, but it also has significant practical benefits.
First and foremost, it makes you invulnerable to blackouts, as you’ll have your own electricity supply right at home! With power outages on the rise due to extreme weather and aging infrastructure, energy independence gives you peace of mind for your home and family’s safety.
Of course, it is crucial to bear in mind that to achieve total self-reliance, you will need more than a portable solar generator. You will likely need multiple solar panels and a power station to store enough energy and keep it in reserve, especially if your house consumes a lot of electricity.
Still, off-grid independence is achievable and an attractive concept to many. If you’re particularly interested in living off-grid, look into the EcoFlow DELTA series, as these offer some of the highest wattages on the market. Other even more robust options include the EcoFlow Power Kits and Smart Home Ecosystem.
Tax Benefits of Solar Power
Governments are highly aware of renewable energy’s positive impact on the environment. Given the severity of the climate crisis, it’s no wonder they are trying to encourage individuals to set up solar panels. One way they do this is through federal tax credits, including compensation and rebates.
Depending on where you live, you could claim up to 30% of your total installation costs. Some states are more generous than others, but researching which benefits you could be eligible for is always worthwhile. You might be surprised by the amount of help available.
We’ve touched on this a little, but it deserves its own explanation. Solar power is an entirely green, renewable source of energy. It doesn’t rely on fossil fuels, nor does it emit harmful fumes and particulate pollution into the air that can negatively impact the environment and your health. Solar generators also produce virtually no sound, so you don’t need to worry about noise pollution either!
It can sometimes be difficult to envisage how beneficial solar panels are, so let’s walk you through some numbers. The average Canadian produces 14.2 tons of carbon dioxide annually—amongst the world’s most. That’s a hefty carbon footprint!
But, installing solar panels on your roof could reduce your carbon footprint by 3 tons or more. That’s almost half of the average yearly contribution, and the more houses that convert to solar power, the more beneficial it will be for the planet.
Increased Home Value
There doesn’t seem to be an end to the money-saving opportunities with solar panels. Not only do they cut down your electrical bills and potentially open you up to various tax benefits, but they can also improve the value of your home. Given the enduring lifespan of solar panels, this is a relevant bonus, even if you don’t plan on selling any time soon.
The value of a home increases because solar energy is the future, and most buyers are well aware of this. If you have already invested in solar panels, buyers are far more willing to pay extra for the added feature.
Once you have installed your solar panels on your roof, you don’t need to do anything to them. They simply absorb sunlight and provide electricity. You don’t need to refill anything, like with traditional fuel generators, nor do you need to worry about cleaning them or any kind of upkeep, as rain will take care of that. A once or twice-a-year clean to remove any accumulated debris should be more than sufficient.
The EcoFlow range of rigid solar panels takes this to the next level thanks to its fully waterproof IP68 rating, protecting them from the elements and making them highly durable. With this level of protection, you can expect your solar system to last for years.
Fitting solar panels to your roof is so easy you might not even require professional help. Effectively, all you need to do is attach solar mounts to your roof and then securely fix the solar panels. From there, it’s just a case of connecting the correct cables to allow electricity to flow through your system to the portable power station, power kit, or smart home ecosystem. It couldn’t be simpler!
The Future of Energy
Given the state of potentially catastrophic climate change, we are all looking for new ways to live greener, and solar energy is the most accessible and impactful choice. More commercial and private properties are turning to solar power to keep their lights on. Get ahead of the curve and be a part of the future; you won’t regret it.
Solar Electricity Can Be Sold Back to the Grid
If you opt for an on-grid solar system, any excess energy you provide to the grid will be deducted from your energy bill. With net metering, you can also sell the power you generate to the grid. It’s a handy transaction that’s beneficial both to your finances and the running of the grid, so there’s no downside.
Disadvantages of Solar Panels
Unfortunately, it isn’t all sunshine and rainbows with solar panels. There are some drawbacks to consider before going ahead with your purchase to ensure they are right for you. Let’s take a closer look.
Doesn’t Work for Every Roof Type
You have to position solar panels properly to achieve the highest energy production. The optimal orientation and angle usually require a slanted roof that faces the sun.
Some roofs have a unique shape that might not accommodate rigid, flat panels. For those homes, flexible solar panels can be a good workaround.
You also need to consider how much sun exposure your panels will receive. If your roof mostly stays in the shade, panels may not be as productive as you like.
The orientation of the solar panels also matters. The ideal direction is true south. Homes where the solar panels face east or west will receive less sunlight.
You should also consider the condition of your roof. Solar panels might be risky if it’s significantly old or has shown signs of degradation. They are pretty heavy, and that extra weight could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. Only take the risk if you’re confident your roof can handle them. Always get a professional opinion!
Not Ideal If You’re About to Move
Although solar panels do increase the value of your home, you aren’t going to benefit from them if you’re planning on moving in the near term. Consider holding off on your solar panel installation if you plan on moving home until you’re in your new property. Unless, of course, you only want solar panels for the increased resale price of your home.
One option to get around this issue is to consider portable solar panels. They’re not designed for roof installations since they come with a kickstand you set up on the ground. Still, the portability makes them painless to transport when it’s time to move.
Buying Solar Panels Can be Expensive
Lastly, but still important, solar panels can be pricey upfront. Although you will almost certainly make money back in the long term, the out-of-pocket cost at the very beginning can seem initially overwhelming.
The investment is worth it, but you should still carefully consider your budget before forking out for a solar system of your own.
So, Are Solar Panels Right for You?
We have provided you with a comprehensive list of all the pros and cons of installing solar panels on your roof. Now it’s down to you! The decision is entirely yours, and only you know whether it’d be a good idea. Don’t make a knee-jerk decision. Consider all the talking points carefully before making a purchase. Just remember, solar is the future!