So you’re ready to take the plunge and purchase solar panels for your home? While this will be one of the most expensive renovations you’ll make, it will be a generous and smart long-term investment – for the planet and your bank account. Switching to solar powered energy for your home is a sustainable, eco-friendly alternative to traditional power.
Solar panels for an average home end up being between $12,000 and $15,000 to install. This is based on what the average home typically needs, which is between four and five kilowatts of power. But depending on where you live and the impact solar is having on your area, you can get government and state rebates that can cut the cost of buying your solar energy system up to fifty-percent!
For the outward cost of solar panels, it makes sense to switch to solar energy 100%. After all, solar energy, with the advancements the industry continues to make, is likely the power source of the future.
We’ve scoured and found the best solar panels for your home below. Before you make a purchase though, consider these important factors when making the call to buy any solar panels:
The Manufacturer’s Financial Position and Length of Warranty
This is a crucial factor just based on the fact that solar panels typically last about 25 years. That’s a long time and you want to ensure that the company you buy from is in good financial standing to stick around a while and honor any warranty claims.
Brand Reputation and Reviews
Going off the above consideration, once you’ve confirmed a company’s track record, it’s vital to take a look at their reputation. Ask around and check online homeowner reviews. What are people saying that is consistent? Is there anything negative that’s been pointed out? These are all significant aspects to cross-check. Not only is this important for the solar panels themselves, but also when it comes time to installation. Check for an accreditation from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP).
Roof and Home Suitability
Of course, you need to make sure that your house is ideal for solar panel installation in the first place. The typical solar panel for residential use is a 60-cell silicon photovoltaic panel. This panel is 65 inches (H) and 39 inches (W), with an average output of 320 watts of power.
If the average household uses between 900 and 1000 watts of power on a monthly basis, then the average family needs between 20 and 30 solar panels to get all their power from solar. Solar panels also work best when at 30-35 degree angles and with minimal barriers such as trees or tall buildings. When you evaluate the size of your roof coupled with how much energy your household uses, you can get a better understanding of the practicality for home solar panels.
Performance and Maintenance
Before purchasing solar panels for your home solar panels, an important factor to consider is the ultimate performance expectations. A lot of this can also be discovered in testimonials, but it’s also dependent on the type of panels and voltage.
It’s been demonstrated that monocrystalline panels or polycrystalline panels are more advantageous over thin film models due to easier installation and improved efficiency.
And depending on what you are using this power and voltage for, you need to think about whether or not you need a 12-Volt or 24-Volt system:
- 12-Volt systems are better for direct currents systems yet have a low wattage maximum; and,
- 24-Volt systems are much easier to run a home on but you may need to buy a separate converter because it’s likely you are connecting to a 12-volt DC appliance.
Leasing vs. Buying
With solar leasing, you make set monthly payments for the panels, and you are entitled to all the electricity they produce. This offers a low-cost option for people to help the environment without an upfront cost. But the long-term benefits are more limited.
Then buying your solar energy system makes it an asset. You save money on your utility bills and you have much more control over how your solar energy system is maintained. You’ll also be more likely to qualify for rebates and incentives with ownership.
When all is said and done, strive to get a few different quotes from the solar panel brands below and don’t be afraid to ask about the factors above! With a purchase like this, you want to feel as confident as possible before signing any contract.
Top 3 Solar Panels for your Home
No camping trip would be complete without the convenience, and reliability of an AIMTOM SolarPal 100W portable solar panel. Allowing you to utilize the sun’s power, this foldable solar power charger travels well in an RV for charging dependability on the road. This product allows users to charge a variety of devices, including cell phones, laptops, tablets and speakers where electricity may not be available.
Measuring 22”x21.3”x1.3” unfolded, the AIMTOM SolarPal weighs a total of 7.19 pounds. Never risk a dead battery again, whether you are hiking, hunting or on the road, with this folding solar panel. Featuring over-charge protection, over current protection, over-load protection and over-temperature protection, you won’t have to worry about damage to your device while charging.
The TP-solar 100W 12V Solar Panel provides power and charging on the go, ideal for use on boats, campers, RVs and more. This kit includes everything you need to get started, including: 4x Z mounting brackets, 1x 16′ red and black solar cable and 1x V shape mounting bracket for a quick and easy installation. Expansion up to a maximum 400W 12V, or 800W 24V system, for those looking to expand their solar charging capabilities.
With an attractive, lightweight, aluminum frame, TP-solar’s panel measures 37.8”x27.95”x2.76” and weighs 22.3 pounds in total. Built to last for decades to come, this unit is made to withstand snow loads (5400Pa), and high winds (2400Pa), for extended periods outdoors. An easy to use interface provides short-circuit, overload and open-circuit protection, as well as protection against battery reverse discharge and battery reverse polarity.