Solar panels are in vogue these days and investing in one is a challenging job, more because the decision you take now will determine how well you are able to derive benefits of these panels in the long run. So, your investment in solar panels is definitely not for a shorter time span but for several years to come. One important aspect that you have to keep in mind is that cost is not the only factor that will influence your decision, there are other factors too. However, since cost is also one of the many factors that will decide how much to invest; a little about it has been explained in brief below.

Cost of solar panels

The solar panel cost will be determined by the following factors that include-

  • How big the solar panel is (in terms of physical size)
  • How much Watts it is of
  • Quality of the material with which it has been made
  • Durability
  • Certifications, if any
  • Number of modules

Another factor that will also determine the cost is whether you are buying the entire power installation system or just a module for your home. Ideally, the cost decreases if the number of modules is more in number.

Aside from the cost factor, the material with which the solar panels have been manufactured also count. Not only that the procedure that was involved in manufacturing these panels are also taken into account while considering solar panels for investing in. Whether or not the power installation system has valid certifications has to be looked into. This is because such power systems will be eligible for the rebates that are offered by the government. And if these norms are not adhered to, government rebates cannot be enjoyed. So, prior to investing in the solar power systems, don’t forget to take this matter into account.

Tier system to determine solar panel quality

There are 3 tiers as far as solar panel quality is concerned. The three have been briefly explained in the paragraph below. These are also included in factors that will help you to choose solar panels.

  • Tier 1 – Characteristic features

These are the manufacturers of solar panels that are involved mainly in Research & Development. They take the onus of monitoring every step in the manufacturing process of solar panels. They constitute 2% of the manufacturers of solar panels. They have been operating in this field for more than 5 years now. They produce excellent quality solar panels.

  • Tier 2 – Characteristic features

These manufacturers have been operating in the industry for the last 2 to 5 years. Although they do not invest as much in Research & Development, they make use of both robotics as well as manual work for production. These manufacturers of solar panels offer good quality solar panels that are affordable too.

  • Tier 3 – Characteristic features

This tier comprises manufacturers that are solely into solar panel assembling. They are not engaged in any form of Research & Development efforts and they are not manufacturers of solar cells. The solar panels offered by them may not be a good choice as the quality may be compromised as the production work is carried out manually. So, output and results may vary from one technician to another.

Click the link to know more about solar panels

The Earth intercepts a lot of solar power: 173,000 terawatts. That’s 10,000 times more power than the planet’s population uses. So is it possible that one day the world could be completely reliant on solar energy?

Solar power cooking is here to stay. In fact, Australians have greatly incorporated this form of cooking. In this way, they are not only conserving energy but simultaneously they are making a contribution towards the environment in their small little ways. Here we will find out more about solar power cooking. Making use of the concept of solar cooking means that you are doing away with the traditional gas ovens and stoves and the electrical counterparts that have always posed to be risky if not carefully operated or handled.

Working of the solar cooker

As the name suggests, cooking with the help of solar energy or the energy of the sun is referred to as solar cooking. However, there are few important points that must be kept in mind while dealing with these types of cookers. These points are listed below-

  • First and foremost, while cooking the cooker has to be kept under direct sunlight so that it receives maximum sunlight. This will help the cooker to work better. You will have to complete cooking while the sun is still bright. This is because if there are clouds that obstruct sun rays, cooking will be hampered. Also, if there are strong winds, you will face the same problem.
  • The solar panels are lined with aluminium foil on the inside, which radiates the heat required for cooking after converting sunlight into thermal energy. Also, prior to cooking, it is necessary to place the cooker in direct sunlight for a considerable period of time for it to gather the much needed thermal heat.
  • You have to use the solar cooker just as you use a grill. You will require a long handle spoon or more appropriately a spatula for cooking or turning over the food. So that you don’t burn your fingers or feel the heat in your hands, you have to use a cover for your hand, preferably something similar to an oven glove.
  • While cooking, a dish or a plate is required to cover the stuff you are cooking on the oven so that it gets cooked faster. In case of solar panel cooking, you could use a metal cover or foil. This will cause the heat to be retained in the utensil in which you are cooking.

The use of solar panels and solar power has become so pronounced that many governments around the globe are urging families to use such alternative source of energy. In fact, these government bodies have also extended tax benefits to the households that have been using solar power for their household and are urging more people to make use of the same. Although, this form of energy has more number of benefits as compared to the drawbacks, nevertheless, there are few of the latter that can be overcome provided you adjust the working schedule accordingly. For instance, as mentioned above, solar energy does not work when sunsets. You can finish up your household chores prior to sunset while enjoy electricity for the remaining part of the day.

There is a lot of hue and cry about solar power and solar panels believed to save a lot on your energy bills every month. As such, this form of energy optimization has become increasingly popular, sometimes, helping you in form of solar water heater and sometimes with the help of solar panels. The fact that it has become an interesting topic to deal with and a lot of experts take active interest in this niche.

Photovoltaic Array

Given below are few facts about the solar panels that you can go through for a better insight.

  • Solar panels differ – You will come across two types of panels, one being referred to as the photovoltaic (PV) panels and the other one is solar thermal panels. In case of the former, there is conversion of sunlight into energy and in case of the latter, the solar panels function when heat is absorbed. The latter technology is used to heat water, which is used for household purpose.
  • Popularity of solar panels – Studies and surveys have proved that more and more households are making use of solar panels and statistical data has proved that the residential arena, in particular has unanimously approved and liked this form of energy and most of them have opted for the same. As such the demand for these panels has grown by leaps and bounds.
  • Pollution can be curtailed – Since it is renewable form of energy that is being used, you can be assured that there will be no greenhouse emission. There is less air and water pollution. Having said about pollution, experts are also of the opinion that as compared to the conventional ways of generating energy (the ones obtained from coal as well as fossil fuel), solar power is undoubtedly greener in nature.
  • Cost effective – Since the use of these solar panels have contributed immensely to the environment, thereby doing away with the ill effects of pollution to a great extent, even the governments around the world are encouraging households to opt for this form of energy. These offers and rewards are being extended in form of tax credits. And it is cost effective and these panels can help you to reduce your electricity bills to a remarkable extent.
  • Huge potential – An interesting study states that if all of the solar energy were to be added that is absorbed by the planet Earth, its landscapes as well as water bodies, a huge number of exajoules would be generated.

Making optimum use of solar panel

Since it is well understood that these panels will help you to reduce energy bills, you have to make sure that it is taking place in reality and is not just a utopian concept. Installing these panels does not mean that you will not make judicious usage of the energy that you are receiving from these panels. Take the necessary measures in the household that will ensure that you have made the optimum usage of the power. Few such instances include switching off appliances when you don’t need them, installing the panels as per instructions from manufacturers and so forth.

When energy from the sun is converted into electricity, it is referred to as solar power. In this process, usually, the photovoltaic cells play an instrumental role in the conversion by making use of a semi conductor, which is responsible for absorbing the radiation from the sun and then emitting as electricity. Since the energy of the sun is being utilised, this type of power is also known as Alternative source of energy. These days, more and more households across the globe are making use of this form of energy so that a lot can be saved in terms of energy and also money.

What are the benefits?

As far as the advantages of solar power are concerned, benefits are many. It is a renewable source of energy. Aside from using it as a source of electricity, it is also used for heating waters that gave birth to the concept of solar water heaters.

Most importantly, this alternative source of energy is used for generating electricity in houses. This helps you to curtail the expenses of your electricity bills that you would have to shell out, which would sometimes skyrocket. For this reason, solar panels are being increasingly used by households across continents and even Down Under.

Aside from generating electricity and helping you save on your electricity bills, these panels will also curtail your cost as far as its maintenance is concerned. The solar panels require very little maintenance and the best part is that they do not require any additional equipment to generate electricity.

In fact, most of the governments around the globe have introduced special offers and incentives for the households that make extensive use of these panels. These incentives are usually available in form of tax benefits. Aside from solar panels, any household that uses “clean energy” is also entitled to these incentives.

Solar power – Drawbacks

Just as a coin has two sides of it, if it is said that solar power does not have any drawbacks, perhaps, it is a wrong statement. There are few of them too. However, these are much less pronounced as compared to the benefits that you get to enjoy by using these solar panels.

One of the biggest drawbacks is that the source of energy is available only during the day- the sun. You will not be able to make use of the energy at night. Aside from this on any day, if there is no sun and if it is a cloudy day, the panels may not work to their optimum capacity due to lack of energy.

Another very striking drawback of the panels is that in order to derive maximum benefit from these panels, they have to be facing the sun directly. There can be no obstruction, which will eventually hinder sun’s rays from falling on the panels.

As such, if you are planning to invest in solar panels, you have to do so keeping in mind the benefits as well as drawbacks. It is best to go ahead only after weighing the pros and the cons.