Solar energy is the renewable, inexhaustible electrical energy that is created by converting sunlight into electricity using photovoltaics cells. And, unlike fossil fuels, which right now are the most popular sources of energy, solar energy doesn’t produce any pollution, while it is being generated, and is sustainable. Despite that, many people still have doubts about the positive influence of solar power. So here are 5 of the greatest solar energy misconceptions and facts that prove that they just myths.
Solar panels require frequent maintenance
Many people refuse to install solar power just because they think that solar panels require regular maintenance, which takes a lot of time and effort. But the truth is that, since solar panels don’t contain any moving parts or complicated details that should be cleaned often, there is no need for regular maintenance. It is recommended, however, to hose then down once a year, so the layer of dirt doesn’t influence the efficiency of the panels, but even that is not an obligation, unless there are some bigger debris fallen on panels. Whats more, most modern solar panels are equipped with monitoring systems that notify the solar panel installers, if there is a need to clean the panels, so you might never need to clean or otherwise maintain them, it will done for you free of charge.
Solar energy creates more pollution than it can prevent from being generated
Another typical myth is that solar energy isn’t really so environmentally friendly, because the manufacturing of solar panels creates a lot more pollution then they can prevent from being released it in energy generation process. Until 2010 it really was so, because manufacturing of solar panels wasn’t as advanced or efficient as it is now. But ever since 2010 solar panel production hardly causes any pollution at all, therefore the panels can work towards limiting how much pollution is released into the atmosphere, while generating electricity for us at the same time.
You will be able to store the energy your solar panels generates in batteries
There is a popular belief that electricity is generated by solar panels, can be stored in batteries and used when needed. Of course, it really is possible to get additional batteries for storing solar energy, but in most cases all modern solar panel systems are tied to the regular electricity grid. It means that solar panels are connected to the electricity grid of your house, and all the electricity generated using your solar panels will be fed back into the grid, not stored somewhere, making your electricity meter spin backwards. You will get credited for generating electricity, but at the same time you will also be able to use regular electricity grow the grid, when your panels aren’t able to produce enough energy.
Solar power is only generated when the sun is shining directly on them
One of the most common myths is that solar panels can generate electricity only in direct, bright sunlight. But is also isn’t true. Solar panels can still generate 10 to 25 percent of its regular capacity during cloudy, non-sunny days. This amount of electricity might not be enough for average household, because even the most energy efficient devices require quite a lot of energy, but as I mentioned before, panels are grid tied, so you will able to use electricity from it when the panels don’t produce enough of it. No matter if it is solar flood lights or appliances.
It takes too long for the solar panels to pay themselves back
And lastly, another misconception is that solar panels are so expensive, that they will pay themselves back only in a couple of decades, therefore they are too much of an investment for average homeowner. But solar panels actually have become a lot cheaper as well as lot more efficient over the last few years, so the average payback period of solar panels are only 5 to 7 years. After that your solar panels will not only provide you with clean energy, but also will actually earn you money, as many countries have schemes that dictates, that homeowners with solar panels get credit for the energy their panels generate. On top of that, solar panels also last up to 35 years, so you will be able to save energy long after your panels will have earned back the investment you made on them.
Nowadays, with the rapid development of solar energy technologies, solar panels truly are a clean, safe as well as financially beneficial alternative to fossil fuels. Additionally, solar power also has a positive impact on the environment, so if these aren’t reasons enough to at least consider installing your own solar panel system, I don’t know what is.
Author’s bio: Arthur Smith is solar energy and efficient lighting enthusiast with years of experience in these fields. He shares his knowledge on everything from best solar lights to how to make your home lighting as efficient as possible on his blog LEDwatcher.com.