The technology for solar power has been around for decades. NASA has been using solar-powered satellites since the 1960s, and some US homes have had passive solar heating systems since World War II. But solar powered homes have only recently become a popular notion.
The benefits of solar energy are immediately obvious: For at least the next few billion years we’ll have access to sunlight, solar energy is clean and has no greenhouse-gas emissions, and it’ll save you money on your electric bills. So why aren’t more homes equipped with solar panels?
Homeowners in San Francisco still feel a little iffy about using solar energy. While it’s been steadily increasing in popularity, it’s not uncommon to have a few questions.
- How much money can solar panels save you?
- Are they worth the investment?
- And just how much of an effect will they have on the environment?
Before you make any big decisions about upgrades for your home, you need to weigh your options. So let’s look at exactly what solar panels could do for you.
At Owens Electric, our professional San Francisco electricians can help you decide whether or not solar panels are right for your home, and we can provide you with a high-quality installation if you decide they are. Keep reading to learn more about how solar panels can benefit your home.
Lower Your Electricity Costs
First of all, you’ll see a dramatic decline in your electricity bill after installing solar panels. Most homeowners see their electricity bills drop by more than 50%. Even if you need a payment plan to have your panels installed, that payment and your new electricity bill are less than the old electricity bill in most cases. You’ll see a return on your investment immediately.
Save Money with Tax Incentives
Through 2016, the IRS is offering tax incentives to help with the growth of solar power in the US. The Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit gives individual taxpayers a credit of 30% to help pay for qualified residential alternative energy equipment, including solar panels. So if you spend $10,000 on solar panels, you’d receive $3,000 in either tax cuts or in addition to your refund. So you can easily reduce the initial investment on your solar panels.
You should also check with your local electric company to see about any rebates they offer for using solar energy. Currently, KCPL is offering $.50 per watt of electricity used as a rebate for any homeowners using solar energy as an alternative.
Help the Environment
Also, solar energy helps out tremendously with the environment. It’s a completely renewable resource, and it provides 6,000 times more electricity in one day than the earth uses in a full year. And your San Francisco home’s solar panels won’t create any emissions whatsoever.
On average, a homeowner using solar electricity will offset the same amount of carbon as if they had planted 2,500 trees of cut down on their driving by 285,000 miles.