How Can You Know Whether Solar Energy Is A Good Investment For Your Home?

If you live in a part of the country where sunny days are far more common than cloudy ones, you may be wondering whether you can capitalize on this natural resource by installing solar panels on the roof of your home. These panels can help convert the natural solar energy that hits your roof each day into electricity that may be used to cool your home, run your lights, or operate your hot water heater. But even in super-sunny areas, these panels aren't always ideal for every home. Read on to learn more about the factors you'll need to take into account to determine whether solar energy is a good investment for you.

How can you tell whether your roof will be able to generate enough solar energy?

The ability of your roof to make the best use of solar rays depends largely upon its angle and pitch. Even if your roof receives hours of sunlight each day, if this sunlight strikes your roof at an odd angle, the solar cells in your installed solar panels won't be able to efficiently collect this energy and much will go to waste. Fortunately, there are now resources available that can help determine the solar potential of your specific roof by using mapping coordinates and satellite images that clearly show your roof's exposure, surface area, and pitch. Not only can this let you know whether solar power is a feasible option for your home, but it can even point out the precise placement of solar panels on your roof for maximum efficiency.

You can also use online calculators for a quick estimate of the cost of installing a "solar system" on your home. After determining whether your home will support solar energy at all, you'll then be able to decide how easily you'll be able to recoup your initial investment through lower energy bills. However, installation prices can vary widely by area (and even by season), so if you're serious about this venture it's worthwhile to contact a contractor, such as those at DFW Solar Electric, for a much more detailed quote. Also keep in mind you'll be able to deduct a portion of your initial costs by using federal energy efficient tax credits.

By utilizing these two resources before investing any money, you may be able to quickly rule out the possibility of solar power for your home. Alternatively, this can give you the information to determine that solar power is a viable option for your home and should be pursued further.