How much do solar panels cost? That’s the biggest question for many home and business owners who have considered making the switch to solar power.
While the benefits of using the sun’s energy may be obvious, the price for a system isn’t so clear-cut. Many factors figure into the cost of a system, and everyone’s needs are different.
Calculate Your Electricity Usage
The first step in getting an idea of how many photovoltaic panels you need to meet your needs is establishing how much electricity you use per month. Take a look at your electric bills from the past year, and find the average number of kilowatts (kWh) used by your household each month. Multiply your monthly kWh by 1,000 to determine your watt hours, and then divide this figure by 30 to calculate your average daily electricity usage.
Sunlight a Determining Factor
To identify how many solar panels you need, you must first determine how many hours of peak sunlight your home receives per day. Online solar maps can provide this information, but on average, states in the Intermountain West generally enjoy about five to six peak sunlight hours each day. If you take the daily electricity average you previously figured and divide it by your sunlight hours, this determines how many watts of power you need.
The cost of installing a residential PV system varies significantly, however, based on a set of complex factors, so no chart or table can really provide an accurate estimate; only a qualified solar installation company can do that.
However, you can take some steps to save money if you decide to go with PV system installation.
Saving on Your PV System Purchase and Installation
You can save money on your initial system costs in all kinds of ways, and one is by taking advantage of the financial incentives available for installing a system. The federal government offers a 30 percent tax credit for equipment and installation costs for residential systems, and in many cases, much more for commercial systems. Depending on which state you live in, you may be eligible for significant rebates and grants to help save money on your initial costs as well.
Figuring your exact solar energy system cost involves many other variables, such as the size of your roof and how much sun it gets. At Intermountain Wind and Solar, we understand the importance of making this investment in energy independence. But we also know first-hand the amount of money your family can save every year when you’re generating your own free power.
Contact us today and let us provide a free estimate for getting solar panels for your home or business. Our experienced professional team will answer all your questions about solar panel costs.