Solar Installations -- Estimating The Costs And Understanding The Benefits

A solar power system for your home is a wise investment in long-term energy efficiency, conservation and economy. Solar power is clean, constantly renewable, reliable and free. As a supplement to your existing electrical power system, a solar installation can lower your monthly energy bills while decreasing the amount of energy needed from the utility company.

Cost is often the biggest obstacle facing homeowners who are considering a solar power system. Total system costs will vary considerably depending on factors such as amount of energy needed, the amount of sunlight your home receives, location of your home, thermal characteristics of your house's structure and local climate.

Given those factors, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provides a very broad estimate of solar installation costs at $8 to $10 per installed watt for a 1,000 to 4,000 watt system, or $6 to $8 per installed watt for a 5,000 watt system or larger. Your local trusted solar installer can give you a more accurate evaluation and estimate of the cost of a solar installation.

Other elements also should be taken into consideration when estimating the costs of a solar installation:

Financial incentives: Local, state, and federal government programs are often available that provide rebates, tax deductions and other financial incentives for switching to solar power. Contact your local utility company to see if it offers any incentives for solar power use. Federal income tax credits of 30 percent are available with the purchase and installation of solar power systems through 2016.

Home energy efficiency: The more efficient you can make your home and the less electricity you use, the less your solar installation will cost. Making structural changes and purchasing new, more efficient appliances could reduce system cost by up to 40 percent.

Long-term savings: In the long run, consistent use of solar-generated power could cut your electricity expenses by a large amount, approximately half in some cases.

Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating has served HVAC customers in the Mid-Ohio area since 1965. Contact us today for more information on solar power systems and for expert assistance with planning and estimating a cost-effective solar energy installation for your home.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about solar installation and other HVAC topics, visit our website.

Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating, Inc. services the Mid-Ohio area. 

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