Solar Energy: Myths and Facts
Little doubt remains about the benefits of renewable energy. Supplies of fossil fuels are finite and diminishing, and new, more sustainable ways to power our homes and businesses are emerging all the time. One energy source, however, has been around, well, forever: the sun. And its rays do more than just make plants grow; in fact, solar energy is one of the cheapest and easiest-to-harness power sources available.
Sun Badger Solar, a new company led by a team of Midwesterners with years of experience in the solar industry, sits at the cutting edge of solar technology. For folks in Wisconsin, there’s no better choice when it comes to installing solar panels on a home or business. But while experts agree that solar is a smart investment for any property owner, a lot of myths and rumors about solar energy are still floating around. Here, we dispel the most common ones.
A typical home owner can anticipate saving over $26,000 on energy costs in the next 25 years
Myth: The up-front costs of solar panels must be high! I can’t afford them.
Fact: These days, solar systems are extremely affordable. In fact, the real question is whether you can afford not to go solar. Wisconsin offers huge solar energy incentives for residents as part of their long-term renewable energy goals. The state covers 40 to 50 percent. In other words, you’re getting paid up front to save money down the line. Within just a few years, your system will pay for itself, and then some.
Myth: Solar panels may be eco-friendly, but they are an eyesore.
Fact: We know, we know. When you think of solar panels, your mind immediately jumps back to the mid-’80s: Saved by the Bell; landlines; and big, clunky solar panels resembling something out of an early George Lucas film. But while the technology used to harness energy from the sun dates back to the 1800s, today’s solar panels are worlds away from those eyesores you may remember. Big, bulky breaker boxes and ugly metallic wire enclosures are a thing of the past. Today’s solar panels are sleek and stylish, and barely noticeable once installed. Even Mies van der Rohe would approve.
The average home solar system will save almost 130 tons of CO2 emissions over the next 30 years
Myth: Have you ever survived winter in Milwaukee? Surely midwestern weather isn’t conducive to solar panels.
Fact: Wrong again! Because solar energy production depends only on the sunlight that shines onto each panel, solar panels do just fine in the winter. In fact, the technology functions better in colder temperatures. It’s true that fewer daylight hours and temporary snow cover can cause the panels to produce a bit less energy, but sunny snowy days can be a boon, due to the effect of sunlight reflecting off sun cover. The thermal energy your panels emit will help melt snow, thus helping protect your roof from damage and getting you back to full power quickly. Consider the fact that Germany, long the worldwide leader in solar energy production, gets significantly less sunlight on average than the Midwest. Here, we get about as much solar as East Texas. Bottom line: Solar is absolutely a feasible energy option in the Midwest.
Myth: Solar panels seem delicate, especially when exposed to all that rain and snow. I’ll probably need to replace them after just a few years.
Fact: Sun Badger’s solar systems are designed to meet the highest performance specifications and quality standards and are built to last 30-plus years. Sun Badger uses panels that have a minimum 25-year performance warranty. In addition, the company offers a free 10-year installation warranty, so you can rest assured that your investment will last. And installation is a breeze, thanks to crews with years of experience and advice for the first-time solar buyer. Sun Badger is a local company run by local experts, and it shows.
Myth: Okay, solar energy sounds nice and all, but it’s a luxury item. I might as well get a self-driving car!
Fact: Solar is no longer a discretionary purchase. The panels should be considered like any other essential appliance in your home, except that instead of increasing your utility bills like your other appliances (washing machines, dishwashers, microwaves, and so on), solar panels save you money and energy in the long term, making them an excellent way to invest in your future (and in the future of the planet). In fact, consumers report an average savings of almost $100 per month. That’s $1,200 per year! Just imagine the cash that will add up over five, 10, 20, 30 years—not to mention an 18-20% increase in your property’s value. A recent study conducted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California found that solar energy increases a home’s value by an average of $15,000. Making the switch to solar is a seriously smart investment—and the sooner you start, the sooner you can start saving.
Ready to get ahead of the curve and make the switch to solar? Contact Sun Badger Solar today for a free solar estimate.