“Solar panels are incredibly expensive to install and only last a few years before needing replacement”. Ever heard anyone tell you that? Statements like this are very common as solar is not something that everyone is familiar with. In this article, we’ll be addressing and busting some of the most common myths and misconceptions about solar energy to help you better understand how it works. Let’s go!
1) “No Sunlight = No Electricity”
This is one of the most common solar energy myths and is completely incorrect! In Singapore, even after installing your solar panel system, your home remains connected to the grid. This means that, when there is sunlight, your home will first consume the solar energy generated by your system for power, and automatically draw electricity from the grid if your energy consumption exceeds what is generated. Similarly at night, when your system is not generating energy, your house will tap on power from the grid just like it currently does and you’ll not experience any electrical outages. The end result? You pay a lot lesser for your electricity since you consume much less from the grid.
2) “Solar panels are very expensive”
The price of solar panels is often brought up in discussions about solar. But, did you know that the cost of solar has actually gone down by a whopping 89% over the past 10 years? Yes, that’s right, 89%! In fact, with how much solar panel technology has advanced, solar energy is now cheaper than traditionally used fossil fuels. Along with being cheaper, they’re also many times cleaner than fuel sources. That said, we acknowledge that upfront costs for solar panel systems can be substantial in some cases. To help alleviate that concern, various solar loans and financial incentives are available to help you reduce initial cost and shorten your payback period.
3) “Installing solar panels is only for people who care about the environment”
Not at all! Preserving the environment is definitely a strong and important reason for installing a solar panel setup for your home. That said, solar energy isn’t only for environmentalists! There are numerous financial benefits that can also be strong incentives for why you should switch to solar. A solar panel system is a worthwhile financial investment that can help significantly reduce your monthly utility bills and even protect you from rising electricity prices. Some solar homeowners experience close to $200 in savings every month on their utility bill!
4) “Solar panels don’t last long”
On the contrary, solar panels are highly durable, weatherproof and can last very long. Solar panels generally last at least 25 years. Most brands of solar panels in the market even provide a performance guarantee of up to 25 years, ensuring that your solar panels’ performance doesn’t fall more than 0.35% to 1% each year. This is very often more than enough to cover your payback period and allow you to profit from solar, with an average annual return on investment of 10% to 25% over its lifetime.
5) “Solar panels are troublesome and costly to maintain”
Solar panels aren’t expensive or difficult to maintain. Solar panels in Singapore often have 20-year to 25-year warranties and solar inverters come with a 5-year to 12-year warranty. These warranties generally help to negate any cost required for physical defect replacements for a large part of your solar panel system’s lifespan. Solar installers usually also provide 1-year to 2-year Defects Liability Period (DLP) that covers issues that arise from the installation of your solar panel system. Solar panels are often tilted at an angle to allow “self-cleaning” when it rains, and maintenance is rarely needed. However, we do encourage solar system owners to schedule maintenance once every 2-3 years — they’re reasonably priced at S$200 to S$400 per visit!
6) “Electricity generated by a solar panel system must be stored in a battery”
Not true! In Singapore, since all solar panel systems will be grid-connected, you don’t need to rely on storage systems to supply your energy consumption at night. While batteries may allow you to conserve cheaper solar energy generated in the day to be used at night, the cost of storage is still significant with current technologies. Solar batteries usually add an additional S$10,000 to your residential solar panel system. In Singapore, you can also sell excess energy generated back to the grid for profit, so excess solar energy generated is not lost!
We usually encourage property owners who are interested in getting storage to install a battery-ready inverter instead (simply let your solar installer know!). This special type of inverter allows you to simply connect a battery in future when prices decline.
7) “A solar panel system doesn’t generate much energy”
Solar panel technology has improved significantly over the years. With this, the energy conversion efficiency of solar panels has also gotten much better. Monocrystalline solar panels — one of the most popular types of solar panel — now boast an impressive 22% energy conversion efficiency. Such technological advancements have meant that energy generated by solar panel systems can often greatly reduce electricity bills or even generate excess energy that can be sold for profit!
Get an Instant Solar Estimate for your Home Now!
Whether you’re ready to install solar panels on your rooftop, or just wondering how you can benefit from solar, use our instant solar assessment tool to get an estimate of the solar potential of your property and find out how much you can save. At Solar AI, we combine geospatial analysis of satellite imagery with big data and artificial intelligence to provide you with reliable and accurate solar information so that you can make a better solar choice!