Despite solar power becoming more accessible and more popular across the world as an alternative energy solution, there are still many misconceptions about this growing technology. Let’s put a few of them to rest.
1. Solar technology is brand new and unreliable
Truth: Solar power has been around since the 1800s. There were even solar powered cars in the 1910s! But it’s true that a lot has changed since then. Old solar technology was inefficient and unreliable, but modern options are a whole different story.
Entire countries are building solar farms to power their cities. New Zealand itself is mostly powered by renewables, solar included. The amount of solar installations worldwide has exploded over the last few decades as more people realise just how much solar has to offer.
2. Solar is too expensive
Truth: We know that cost is a big factor in installing solar, but we also know that a lot of our customers start off by overestimating how much they actually need to spend to get something out of a solar power system.
Over the last few years, the price of solar power has been dropping as technology becomes more advanced. Smaller panels can now get the same efficiency as older, larger options, with less upfront cost. The same goes for batteries and inverter technology.
The reality is that even a small solar power system can save you money - up to 80% of your utility bill in some cases. And if you generate more than you use? You can sell it back to the grid for pure profit.
3. Solar is difficult to install and maintain
Truth: There’s a grain of truth in this myth. The right solar power system can be tough to figure out if you’re doing it by yourself. That’s why so many people choose to rely on experts like us instead. We can evaluate your need and viability for solar, and install the system that you need in as little as a single day.
But what about afterwards? Aren’t solar panels hard to maintain? No - in fact, most users only need to wash them down every so often to get rid of dust and leaves. Solar panels can last for 25 years or more with this kind of bare minimum maintenance. Ten minutes with a hose is all it takes.
Even battery systems are simple to maintain and install. ZEN Energy hybrid solar power systems, for example, can come with a set of specialist modular batteries. These are plug-and-play, allowing you to increase (or decrease) your solar storage needs as necessary.
4. Solar panels don’t work when it’s cloudy or in winter
Truth: Sunny, cold, cloudy, summer, winter, outer space - solar panels work wherever there’s sunshine, even if there isn’t much of it.
The technology behind solar panels allows them to work in any temperature or environment, no matter the weather. It’s true that cloudy days don’t generate as much power as sunny ones, but panels are still absolutely viable in those conditions. Otherwise there’d be no solar panels in countries like Germany and the United Kingdom.
5. Solar panels will damage your roof
Truth: Solar panels actually help protect the portion of the roof they are covering from UV damage. Ironically, solar panels often last longer than the roof they are mounted on, with some homeowners even bringing them with them to their new home when they move.
If the roof is somehow damaged, solar panels can be easily removed temporarily and repairs made before the panels are remounted.
6. Solar panels are actually bad for the environment
Truth: It’s true that making solar panels does create some greenhouse gas emissions through mining and material processing. However, for the same amount of energy, coal plants generate about 25 times more carbon dioxide. Solar panels are practically spotless when it comes to clean energy in comparison.
The solar panel systems provided by ZEN Energy are designed to last 25 or more years, and “make up” the carbon dioxide used to make them within a couple of years by offsetting the emissions that would have been caused by using fossil fuel grid power.
And best of all? Once those 25 years have passed, solar panels can often be recycled into new panels, ensuring the next generation of tech doesn’t have those same emissions from being created.