Solar Energy

The problem with getting the proper information regarding solar energy is that people must consider more than the science around the subject instead of getting off track with political, emotional and social reactions about solar energy and the environment. However, when it comes to solar energy, people cannot make up whatever facts they want. To eliminate all the misinformation about solar energy, below are five of the biggest myths about solar energy.

 

Myth #1 – A life of solar energy requires the sacrifice of modern conveniences.

Solar energy supplements the power you normally get from a local utility, or you can install a solar system that supplies all your energy needs. A solar-powered home has the same appliances non solar-powered homes have – televisions, computers, washers, dryers, refrigerators, CD players and so on. As you can see, you don’t live in “the Stone Age” when you switch to a solar energy home like some people try to make you believe.

Myth #2 – To have solar energy, you need storage.

The myth is that you must use the energy as its generated or lose it if you aren’t storing it. The belief is that without any storage batteries, which are very expensive, there is no power at night. The utility company absorbs the extra energy from your solar system and credits you for that energy. Because you use the energy both day and night, your credits are used first, and you only pay for the amount used over your credit.

Myth #3 – Solar energy isn’t ready for prime time.

We all know that science progresses constantly. Solar power generation is not a new technology, and the research on it continues along with its development. Solar energy has successfully demonstrated that with the help of rebates and incentives, the payoff is quite large in about seven years. As technology with solar energy grows and becomes cheaper and more efficient, that figure will reduce.

Myth #4 – Electricity is expensive from solar power.

Power plants are expensive. In our country, most power plants are paid for. The truth of the matter is that it is less expensive to have a solar system installed than connect to a grid if you are located over 500 yards from the closest utility connection.

Myth #5 – Solar energy systems require fossil fuel energy for a backup.

This myth ties in with myth #2 above. When you are tied into a grid, which is the most common way residential homes are set up, your home is supplied with the exact amount of energy you need whether it is a dark, cloudy or a sunny day. Your home has power as long as your residential area has energy. The difference is that your home is contributing to the solar energy grid, thus reducing your energy bill. Fossil fuel backup generators are usually only helpful in cases where you cannot be tied to the grid, such as if you had a cabin deep in the woods. Even in cases like this, you can use a battery backup option to store any extra energy.

Solar energy is a big part of our energy future, and it is here to use now. Naturally, it will continue to improve and evolve, but it is a good, mature technology that has a proven record. Don’t let the myths keep you from making solar energy a major part of your future. For more information on solar energy, please visit Energy.gov.

This guest post was written by Max Wolff, professional writer at www.BobHeinmillerSolar.com. Max Wolff is a sophomore at Stanford University studying Economics. He is a passionate basketball fan and hip hop junkie.

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