Due to the constant rise in our energy bills, many people throughout the world are looking for reliable and cheap alternative energy. Of course, the one source of energy that is essentially unlimited and reliable is solar energy. With the constant improvements in technology and price, more and more homes are setting up solar power systems. The modern solar panel can easily generate a significant amount of energy even if your area does not have as much sunlight compared to places like Hawaii or California.
Many homes were not designed with having solar panels in mind so it may appear that it may not be practical to have them installed. But since these newer Photovoltaic systems (PV Systems) are more advanced and have a more efficient design, even if your home does not get the maximum amount of sunlight each day, it can still generate electricity. Today’s solar panel systems are installed at a steeper angle, which takes in more sunlight than laying flat and allows for better generation of electricity, even if the house does not get enough sunlight. There is a rail system setup in many solar kits which allow the panels to be positioned to receive the maximum amount of sunlight. It also is set up for expansion later if you need it.
Solar Power System Considerations
Before you decide on what solar panel system to get, you need to know the amount of electricity you use in your home. Once you have figured out the amount of electricity your household consumes each month, you will know the type and size of the system you will need. Depending on the way your home is built and the amount that you can afford, you can start off with the minimum but give yourself the opportunity to expand later if it proves effective. Once setup, you can expect to see a significant drop in your electricity bill within a year’s time. If you live in an area that gets a significant amount of sunlight, you can expect your bill to drop almost to zero. A basic system could start off with powering the outdoor lights then you can expand the system to start powering parts of your home.
Net Energy Metering
Many utility companies are offering Net Energy Metering or NEM which allows the homeowner to sell any excess electricity generated by their solar panel system to the utility companies. The advantage of this system is that it keeps the household connected to the Grid so in case there is not enough electricity being generated by their solar panels, they can still receive electricity from the utility companies. This approach not only helps you to save money but it also always the electric company to not rely solely on fossil fuels to generate power.
The Inverter: A Key Component For Your Solar Power System
When installing your solar power system, the most important component that you need to look at carefully is the inverter. The inverter converts the DC power generated by the solar panels into AC power that you use in your home so you need to make sure that the inverter you choose is sufficient for your home. If you pick the wrong size, your system won’t meet your electrical needs. Even if you initially start with a basic set up, having a big inverter will allow for expansion in the future. It is most dangerous when it comes time to connect the solar panel system to the the electrical system of your home, therefore you should never install the inverter yourself. As a matter of fact, you will need to have a licensed electrician do it for you because of state or city regulatory requirements and to take full advantage of any tax credits or rebates.
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State and federal governments are offering incentives for people to setup a solar power system. If you need financial help, you will probably be able to receive special loans or grants. Not only can you start benefiting from your own efficient and clean system but many of these incentives can potentially offset the initial high cost of installation. This is especially good if you are very concerned about the environment and want to do what you can to protect it.