Homeowners install solar power systems on their homes is to reduce their non-renewable energy consumption and their impact on the environment. Instead of powering your home with fossil fuels that can cause pollution, climate change and health issues, renewable solar power is becoming a more readily available for homeowners.
Although you’re connected to the grid, your solar panels will provide energy to power everyday life. Since we live in a northern climate and our days are shorter in the winter, you might require some back up from BC Hyrdro during that time, but your solar panels will greatly reduce the amount of electricity used from the grid and in turn, reduce your hydro bill.
How do solar panels work?
The solar panels collect the sun’s photons and creates a direct current (DC) electric field. An inverter attached to your solar panels converts DC to alternating current (AC) so that it can be used to power your home’s systems. The AC is then routed through the home’s switchboard to supply energy to it.
One of the best things about solar power systems, is that when you have collected more energy than your home needs, it is exported back into the electrical grid. In some cases, you can store it in batteries connected to your system and use it later. When power is put back into the grid, you could end up with a negative power bill and will get a credit for that power.
If there isn’t enough solar power energy to power your house, in the winter or in bad weather, then your home will import energy from the grid or from any batteries you might have. Learn more about the benefits of solar power.
Will my solar system work on cloudy days?
While sunny days produce more solar power, solar panels can still draw energy from the sun on cloudy days. Plus, even cloudy locations still receive at least a few hours per day of sunlight. Sunny locations can receive over 5 hours of power.
When combined with an integrated storage battery, you can save up power on the sunny days to use on a rainy day or at night. This gives you a renewable energy resource around the clock.
Can solar power save money?
The initial cost of installing a solar power system is expensive, but it has become more affordable than it used to be and has a good return on that investment. With new technology always being developed, the cost of solar power will continue to get less expensive. You can expect to save thousands annually on power, since you won’t be relying so heavily on the grid.
Once your solar system is installed, you won’t have to worry about the cost of that energy going up. The cost of non-renewable fossil fuels will rise, but once your solar panels are installed, it costs practically nothing to harness the free energy that comes from the sun. Plus, if you have a solar system with a backup battery, it can be a cost effective alternative to a generator in case of a power failure. The battery requires no maintenance where the generator needs maintenance and fuel to run.
A solar power system can improve the value of your home. Home buyers who are concerned about the environment and passionate about using renewable energy will be attracted to your home. Since the solar system will already be in place, they won’t have to worry about making the investment and having one installed.
Is solar power right for you?
There are a few factors that you must consider if you want to install solar panels. They include the position of your home, if there are any obstructions like trees or buildings and your home’s proximity to the grid or connection point.
Solar is also a great idea for your cabin or recreational property that has no grid power nearby. Instead of powering your cabin with a generator or paying huge amounts to BC Hydro to install power, your solar panels can generate all of the power you need.
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