Do it yourself solar panels are a great way to save money on your energy bill. However, it’s important to understand the potential risks and limitations of this DIY option.
Saving money: According to the Center for Sustainable Energy, a typical 5 kilowatt (kW) solar system costs $3-$5 per watt. This includes labor, which can account for 10% of the total cost of a solar system.
Safety: To install your own solar panel, you’ll need to be familiar with electrical systems and equipment. If you don’t, you may run into problems with loose connections or wiring that can be dangerous.
Efficiency issues: Professional solar installers have the expertise to recommend the right types of solar panels, roof mounts, inverters and battery banks to get you the best results. They also know how to properly position your solar panel array to maximize sunlight capture, taking into account the locations of shade trees and buildings that could inhibit the performance of your entire system.
DIY Solar Panels: A Comprehensive Guide to Building and Installing Your Own Solar Power System
Product availability: Professional solar installers have access to the top-of-the-line products from leading distributors, while DIYers are typically limited to less expensive options.
Maintenance: While a solar panel system should last for 25 years, it’s important to keep up with maintenance and repairs. This can include cleaning the roof and keeping your panels free of debris.
Warranty: Standard solar panel warranties are 10-12 years. However, there are some companies that offer comprehensive product and workmanship warranties.
Ultimately, the decision between DIY and professional installation depends on your personal preferences and budget. The best way to find out which is the better fit is to shop around for a few different DIY and professional options before making your final selection.