10 Things To Know Before Installing a Solar Panel on Your Roof
The ability of some materials to create an electrical charge from light exposure was first observed in 1839,
The climate is changing rapidly, and most people are getting aware of the problems facing the earth such as excessive plastic use, and carbon footprint. With all this happening, a lot of people in Nigeria and Africa to be precise are finally coming to terms with the fact that the shift to solar panels are inevitable in the coming years.
A single solar module can produce only a limited amount of power; most installations contain multiple modules adding voltages or current to the wiring and PV system.
Solar panels are installed to produce energy in an environment-friendly manner. More and more people living in Nigeria are choosing this lifestyle for their homes and offices.
These people like the idea of conserving energy and using sustainable materials that don’t add up to the effect of the green house.
Solar panels are not only great for the environment, but they have some other benefits too.
Installing solar panels is an easy way to save money on your electric bill as you minimize your carbon footprint as well. However, for some people, solar panels have their advantages and disadvantages.
Currently, the best achieved sunlight conversion rate (solar module efficiency) is around 21.5% in new commercial products. Typically lower than the efficiencies of their cells in isolation.
The most efficient mass-produced solar modules have power density values of up to 175 W/m(16.22 W/ft).
If you have got intentions of installing solar panels on the roof of your home even if you reside in Nigeria, south Africa, Ghana, Mozambique, kenya or any part of Africa, then you should keep on reading this article because it is filled with the information about the things you are required to know before installing a solar panel on your roof.
1. How many solar panels are needed to run a house?
This is part of the very first questions that should be crossed out with an answer before going forward to install a solar panel on your roof, Depending on the type of house you’ve got, a bungalow house might need just eight solar panels to power a house.
While a duplex will generally require about sixteen solar panels to completely cover your electrical power needs.
Also if you will want to heat water for your family if its an average family of four, you’ll be required to get two solar thermal panels will be needed to get that done. and if its a large family of eight then six thermal solar panels will be required to heat water too for the family.
2. Are Solar Panels Great For Your Needs?
While solar panels have the reputation that they will definitely prove beneficial for everyone, these advantages are limited to some people the reason is because, Some people require more energy for their house, and it can become a little problematic if they install the solar panels.
The major benefit of solar panels is that they save your electricity bills. However, if you do not do proper research about your power needs, it can end up costing you more money than you made available for your budget.
If you require more power in your home, then you will need to install more solar panels, which means that you will need to invest more in the whole procedure.
If you install solar panels and later on find out that they are not a good fit to provide the necessary power, you will only regret your decision i am sorry to say that but its the hard truth.
3. What Are The Main Disadvantages of having Solar Energy?
There are some disadvantages that comes with having a solar panel. You just have to know this things just incase so here are some of the disadvantages of having a solar energy.
- Solar Energy Storage Is Expensive
- Uses a Lot of Space
- Associated with Pollution
- Cost. The initial cost of purchasing a solar system is fairly high
- Weather Dependent. Although solar energy can still be collected during cloudy and rainy days, the efficiency of the solar system drops.
4. What Are The Costs Involved?
Always be sure that before you even think about getting the solar panels for your house, you need to set and prepare your budget and also do your research on all the costs involved in acquiring the solar panel.
Most people go over board with the idea that because they are under the impression that the solar panels are cost-effective.
While it is true that solar panels save money, that may not be the case for you if you do not do your due diligence properly.
Every country has its own prices and laws, and that means in your area or region, the costs could vary.
The best way to go about this is by getting a professional solar provider that has great user ratings and reviews. You can see some companies at the end of the article.
Your solar provider will be able to provide you with all the necessary information. If you think that you are not comfortable with the billing, you can pick someone else and do ensure to not go further with the negotiations.
5. How Long Do Solar Panels Last?
Dear reader, you don’t just wake up one morning and decide to purchase and place a solar panel on the roof of your home.
Believe me, when i say you need to do some research and know some things about installing the solar energy things like; “how long the solar panels last” you see for instance the crystalline panel which is one of the types of solar panels there is, and it will guarantee to last for 20-25 years, while the film panels which is another type of solar panel are only guaranteed for 2-5years.
The regular warranty for photovoltaic solar panels last for as long as 25-28years.
6. Is Your Roof The Right Place To Install The Solar Panels?
While some roofs are better suited for solar panels than others. The first thing you need to know by yourself is whether you are going to upgrade your roof in the next few years or not?
It is better to get all the pending upgrades out of the way before hand. Once your solar panels are installed, it will get expensive to make any further changes once all that is done.
On the other hand, if you think a roof update is needed in the future, it is better not to install the panels. It is very difficult to get them off later on after it has been installed.
Another thing you should know about is how much shade your roof gets. Is it at the right angle? The right angle means that your roof needs to get maximum sunlight as that is the primary source of energy in this case.
If your roof is not at the right angle or does not have enough space for direct sunlight, you will have to install the panels in your backyard, and that won’t be as productive as you will want it to be.
After considering all the factors related to your roof, if you think that installing solar panels on your roof is not a good idea, you can invest in community solar.
You would get a discount on your electricity bill this way even if you live in a place that is not very solar-friendly. i do think this second option is top notch to unite and bring people together. and its a good one if you ask me as community solar is the way to go.
7. What Are The Important Uses of Solar Panels?
I know that this particular question will come up before any initial move will be made to install a solar panel on your roof. There are various ways in which the solar energy is used in todays world here are a few for you to look at before you make your decision.
- As heat for making hot water, heating buildings, and cooking.
- To generate electricity with solar cells or heat engines.
- To take the salt away from sea water.
- To use sun rays for drying clothes and towels.
- It is used by plants for the process of photosynthesis.
8. Is Your Location Appropriate For The installation of the solar panel?
I have already touched on the importance of sunlight when installing solar panels. In the case of solar panels, sunlight is the most important factor, and its presence and absence can affect your solar panel’s performance.
Be advised that where you install the solar panels is highly important so you have to keep in mind the weather in your area where the solar panel will be installed. Is it mostly sunny or cloudy? Some regions generally have short days or rainy/cloudy days most of the time.
Solar panels create energy by converting solar power from the sun, which means that its performance is already cut into half as it won’t work during the night. It is imperative that it gets the maximum amount of sunlight during the day so it can perform well and give enough energy to power the whole house effectively.
9. Should You Clean The Solar Panels?
For optimum performance a solar panel needs to be made of similar modules oriented in the same direction perpendicular towards direct sunlight. The path of the sun varies by latitude and day of the year and can be studied using a sundial or a sun chart and tracked using a solar tracker.
Well, Unless you live somewhere with a high amount of dust, dirt or sand. Cleaning of the solar panel is not really necessary, at most rain falls which happen occasionally like somewhere in lagos state Nigeria, will be enough to naturally and safely keep your solar panels clean. And free from clogs and dust that can lead to lower production of the power supply.
10. What Kind Of Solar Should You Go For?
There are two dominant solar technologies that you can pick from. These dominant solar technologies are photovoltaic and thermal. Photovoltaic uses arrays of cells and then turns sunlight into electricity.
While in the case of thermal, the panels use sunlight to heat water for use inside. The choice basically depends on your needs. If your home requires a lot of energy for heating, or it is expensive to heat fuel in your region, you should go for solar thermal investment.
These are the things you need to know before you decide to install the solar panels on the roof of your home.
You can also check out for the top-10-solar-companies-in-nigeria