How Much Can You Save With Solar Panels?
If you’re looking for ways to reduce your energy bills, become more energy-efficient, and adopt greener energy, you’ve likely already thought about solar power.
Making the transition to a solar power system requires a significant monetary investment. Even with the 2021 solar tax credit initiative, the cost of kitting out the average home with solar energy is still well over the 10k mark.
This sum makes many people wonder exactly how much money you can save by switching to solar energy. Is it worth it? Let's take a closer look at the savings you can make.
Are Solar Panels Worth the Investment?
The short answer is yes. While they require a considerable upfront cost, the savings you make on your monthly energy bills can be huge. Additionally, energy suppliers tend to raise their rates each year (by around 2.2% on average). If you use fossil fuels, you can expect your bills to keep rising. Solar energy running costs remain the same no matter what, so you can enjoy a steady rate year on year.
How Much Can I Actually Save?
This is a difficult question to answer accurately. Every home is unique. Many factors come into play when calculating the savings you can make with solar energy. These include:
- The amount of direct sunlight your home receives
- The total surface area of your solar panels
- Your monthly energy consumption
- The rates of electricity in your area
The average US home receives a bill of just under $118 per month. This can increase dramatically if you power a large home or have many power-dependent appliances in use. Essentially, a solar energy system that can accommodate 100% of the average US home’s
energy needs then the system would pay for itself in under a decade.
A power-heavy home may not be able to install enough solar power for 100% efficiency, so it would logically take longer for the system to pay for itself. However, the upshot is that it would have a significant impact on lowering the monthly bills, especially year-on-year as energy rates increase.
How Long Do Solar Panels Last?
Of course, all energy systems have a shelf life and solar energy is no exception. Solar panels last around 25 years before they need to be replaced. As discussed above, it takes a decade for the system to pay for itself in energy cost savings. That means the average US home will enjoy 15 years of free energy before the solar energy system must be replaced. It’s this figure that makes the decision to go solar hard to ignore.
As a final note, there is a lesser-known financial bonus for installing solar energy. Having a solar energy system increases the sale value by around $15-20,000. In short, you won’t lose out financially if you decide to sell your home after investing in solar energy. Overall, the cost savings of having solar energy significantly outweigh the initial investment, so it’s always worthwhile.