Solar Energy – What Are The Advantages & Disadvantages
When I set out to write an article on the advantages and disadvantages of solar energy, it is immediately clear that – for almost every disadvantage I came across – there is a positive outcome which outweighs any small disadvantage or obstacle of solar energy! If you are reading this, it is likely you are doing so with the intention of weighing up the positives and negatives of installing solar energy in your home or business – a decision that could affect a rather large proportion of your financial expenditure; therefore, it is a decision that should never be taken lightly. So, without further ado, here are the primary advantages and disadvantages of solar energy.
- Solar energy is 100% renewable –No matter what happens, we will never run out of our source of solar energy – the Sun (well, not for a few billion years, at least). This means solar is indefinitely sustainable and renewable, unlike oil, which is not renewable and has declining reserves!
- NO ongoing costs – A solar system’s ongoing running cost is zero. It doesn’t require fuel, unlike gas, electricity & water which has a never-ending cost.
- Solar energy produces energy at a neutral cost – It is true that solar panels only generate power when sunlight is available. Energy cannot be produced during the night and a cloudy day can cause the panels to produce less power than average. Similarly, less energy is captured during the mid-winter months; however, solar produces more electricity than is needed during summer, and even on cloudy days and during winter, solar panels still produce significant amounts of electricity. The net effect is usually positive. Quite soon using batteries for storage to collect the excess electricity from your solar system will become another cost effective strategy, providing virtual independence from the grid.
- Solar panels are big but versatile – Solar panels do require a moderate amount of space. While the average Aussie roof installation is big enough to power a home, sometimes oddly shaped or angled roofs can be an obstacle and people who live in apartment blocks may miss out altogether. However, if you have a roof, you can put a solar panel on it. Unlike a single string inverter, the flexibility of micro inverters mean you can mount any number of panels on any number of roof surfaces, maximizing the potential size of your system.
- Solar panel technology has improved greatly and continues to do so – Even though current panels are not yet 100% efficient, they have certainly come a long way in a short amount of time. These improvements in solar technology are consistent and panels just keep getting better and better. This means your system now produces enough electricity to make the savings it provides cost neutral over just 5 yrs.
- Solar panels are an excellent investment – Yes, it is an investment, but in the long run, you will save much more than your initial layout. The initial investment in panels, equipment and installation can be a bit daunting, however with our Solar Neutral offer, we are actually able to install the entire system for you at no out of pocket costs! Once installed, solar power costs nothing to use. Let’s not forget that solar power is an investment in our planet’s future too, so you are paying a small price for clean air and water and ditching your reliance on fossil fuels.
- Solar energy is extremely eco-friendly – While solar panel manufacture is not 100% free of environmental impact, the tiny amount of energy used in manufacturing is quickly offset by the simple fact solar energy creates absolutely zero pollution! Oil – on the other hand – is massively detrimental to the environment, releasing harmful carbon dioxide, greenhouses gases and carcinogens into our precious air.
- Solar panels are easy to install and require almost no maintenance – Once the easy installation occurs, just a quick wash once per year is all it takes. Because panels aren’t mechanical, there are no moving parts to worry about, making them almost indestructible. Solar systems are storm-safe too.
- Solar panels are silent – They produce no noise at all, ever.
Point for point, the case for solar energy gets stronger every time and year. The cost of a solar system now typically has a payback period of just 5 years and then it is providing free electricity which can easily be 40-70% of your house or business needs.
Solar – it’s on the house!