Green home – is it worth investing in solar panels?

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While electricity prices continue to rise, as does the environmental awareness of Polish women and men, more and more people are considering installing solar panels on the roof of their home

We are increasingly looking for ways to save on the fixed expenses associated with running a home. Electricity bills for a family of four can amount to several thousand zlotys a year, and are expected to rise further in 2020. An alternative solution may prove to be ecological photovoltaics. Before setting up the solar panels should consider whether it is really worth investing in them.

How do photovoltaic panels work?

Photovoltaic installation uses solar energy, which is counted among the largest renewable energy sources. Currently, thanks to available technology, we can take advantage of its potential, while saving on costs associated with electricity bills. The process is possible thanks to the phenomenon called the photovoltaic effect. It consists in the fact that solar energy is converted into direct current in photovoltaic cells from semiconductors, of which solar panels are made. This conversion of energy is made possible by the operation of a solar inverter, or inverter. It changes direct current into alternating current with electrical parameters consistent with the requirements of the public grid. Moreover, energy production using solar panels does not produce harmful carbon dioxide and has a much smaller carbon footprint than traditionally obtained electricity from power plants

Green solutions – when will the investment pay off?

There are a number of factors that affect how quickly your solar panel investment will pay off. The main ones include:

  1. The cost of existing electricity per 1 kWh – the more expensive the current energy is, the faster you can feel the savings from photovoltaics.
  2. Type of panels – here it is primarily about the quality of the panels installed. It is worth choosing proven, reputable companies that provide a minimum guarantee of several years. High quality definitely extends the life of the panels, and thus makes the investment more profitable in the long run.
  3. Type of surface that determines the cost of installation. Professionals pay attention to the place, material, angle of inclination and many other parameters, which then translate into labor.
  4. Location – it is a good idea to make sure how high the sun exposure is on our roof. Those with a southern slope work best.
  5. Grants – green solutions are now supported by local authorities and the European Union, so to reduce your own contribution you can apply for additional funds. This will minimize the total cost and the installation will start to bring savings sooner. Some programs cover up to 80% of the total investment

How much can I save by installing solar panels?

Installing solar panels is an investment that can pay dividends after just a few years. The panels simultaneously provide electricity and offset the cost of your electricity bill, so the payoff is really noticeable. Every penny spent on the installation will begin to pay for itself as soon as the system is up and running. Savings are even more visible when the energy produced fully covers the needs of the household. Depending on a number of factors (insolation, panel surface, individual electricity consumption) in favorable conditions you can reduce electricity bills by up to 90%. In the case of an average Polish family this will save several thousand PLN per year. With the current technological capabilities of the entire investment pays for itself after about 8 years. With the use of average solar panels, whose life span is 20-30 years, such a result gives a good chance to reduce fixed costs associated with running the house. With current legal regulations, investing in photovoltaics for profit is not profitable, but it is perfect for personal use. It is also worth remembering the second positive aspect of installing photovoltaic panels – a reduced environmental footprint. While traditional power plants contribute to global warming, solar panels rely on green renewable energy.

Peter Bowers

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