Solar Panel Kits: What You Need to Know

March 12, 2009 by  
Filed under Solar Panels

Solar panels are a great vehicle for harnessing energy from the sun, in order to maintain a green lifestyle and contribute to a cleaner environment. Initial costs of a solar energy system can be expensive, but it is possible to save some money by purchasing a kit and assembling it yourself. However, it’s not quite as easy as buying an unassembled piece of furniture and following the directions at home. Solar panel kits require careful planning that starts before you even make a purchase.

Not everyone is an experienced solar equipment installer, but if you do have some experience, you will probably only need a little support from the manufacturer to answer an occasional question. You can probably find the kit you need by doing some research online to see what’s in your price range. However, if the world of solar panel equipment is new to you, the best strategy would be to look for a supplier that offers technical support as well as kits. Experienced technical support technicians can walk you through planning and installation. It’s best to find support that’s available by phone, email and in-person, as needed.

A good supplier can help you determine the correct system configuration and size for you based on your home’s energy needs. This is important because if you end up with a system that’s bigger than you need you’ll have wasted money. And if you end up with a system that’s not big enough to cover your energy needs, there might be times when you’re stuck without power, or still have to purchase it from the utility company, which defeats the purpose.

It’s also a good idea to find an expert that can help determine exactly what your home’s energy needs are, factoring in location variables and orientation to the sun. Solar panels are only effective to the extent that they are exposed to direct sunlight. Nearby buildings or trees can obstruct sunlight and decrease your system’s efficiency. Climate and average outdoor temperature are also important factors to consider when deciding the type of panels needed.

To save money in the end, it would be a good investment of time to research manufacturers and consumer feedback to determine where to get the best quality at the best price. It’s not always wise to look only for the cheapest price if it sacrifices quality. On the other hand, what costs the most isn’t necessarily the best. There are solar panels available in many different combinations of amperage and voltage. An expert opinion can ensure that you make the optimal choice for you.

Another factor you could use some expert advice with is deciding the best type of backup storage for your needs. Batteries are necessary in case of power outages or prolonged periods of inclement weather. There are many different kinds of batteries with different maintenance requirements, capacities, and costs.

It is well worth the time to do the legwork of finding a supplier that is competent and knowledgeable. Gathering information and soliciting expert advice can save a lot of trouble in the end. When it comes to making an investment like a solar energy system, using every resource at your disposal can help make the process and results well worth it.