Did you know that the energy that the sun gives to the planet in only one hour could satisfy the demands of the whole world's population for an entire year? There is no question that the sun is a very potent source of energy. Yet, even though we can only gather a small portion of this energy, harnessing its power via the installation of solar panels can substantially improve the planet's state.
Solar energy has now been shown to be incredibly advantageous, not only for the environment but also for the private economy. Even though it has been extensively criticized for being costly or inefficient, solar energy has now been shown to be extremely beneficial.
Solar power is quickly becoming the primary source of electricity for an increasing number of households, largely because of the proliferation of government rebates and subsidies for installing solar panels and the general decline in the cost of solar panels overall. In recent years, the technology has seen considerable advancements, and solar battery storage systems have supplemented it. Because of this, solar power has become a much better way to get clean energy that is also better for the environment.
However, regardless of the kind of energy source you choose to investigate, there will always be some drawbacks. GreenMatch has put together a list of the most important pros and cons of using solar energy, which are as follows:
Pros and Cons of Solar Energy
The Advantages of Solar Energy
- Source of Renewable Energy
Solar panels have several advantages, but perhaps the most significant one is the fact that solar energy is a source of energy that is completely renewable. It is possible to make use of it wherever you are on the globe, and it is always there for the taking. In contrast to other energy sources, we will never use up all the energy the sun can give us.
Solar energy will be available for as long as the sun shines, which means that humanity will have access to sunshine for at least 5 billion years after the sun has died, when experts predict that it will no longer be possible to harness solar energy.
- Lowers electricity bills
Your monthly energy expenses will decrease since you can satisfy part of your energy requirements with the power produced by your solar system. The size of the solar system and the amount of power or heat you use will determine how much money you save on your monthly bill.
For instance, if you own a company that uses commercial solar panels and make this conversion, you may reap significant savings as a result of the larger system size's ability to offset a sizeable portion of your monthly energy costs.
In addition, not only will you be able to save money on your monthly electricity bill, but there is also the chance that you may be able to collect money under the Smart Export Guarantee for any excess energy that you are able to export back to the grid (SEG). If your solar panel system is linked to the grid and you create more power than you need, you may sell the excess to the utility company.
- Various Applications
Many different applications are possible using solar energy. You have the option of producing either heat or energy (through photovoltaics) (solar thermal). Solar power can be used to do a lot of different things, like make electricity in places that aren't connected to the regular power grid, clean water in places where there aren't enough clean water sources, and send spacecraft into space.
Solar energy may also be included in the components of the construction material itself. Sharp has recently created windows that allow solar energy to pass through them transparently.
- Low Maintenance Costs
Solar energy systems do not often require a great deal of upkeep on the part of the owner. It is just needed to keep them generally clean. Therefore, cleaning them a couple of times per year should be sufficient to fulfill this requirement. You may always depend on specialized cleaning agencies, who provide this service for anywhere between £25 and £35, in the event that you have any doubts.
Solar panel makers with the best reputations offer warranties that last between 20 and 25 years.
Because there are no moving components, there is also no wear and tear on the mechanism. Because it works nonstop to transform solar energy into electricity and heat, the inverter is often the sole component that has to be replaced between 5 and 10 years after it has been installed (solar PV vs. solar thermal). In addition to the inverter, the cables in your solar power system must be checked and fixed regularly to ensure it works as well as possible.
As a result, after you've paid off the original expense of the solar system, you shouldn't have to worry about spending much money on subsequent upkeep or repairs.
- Technological Advancement
Solar power sector technology is growing at a rapid pace, and it is expected that this trend will continue into the foreseeable future. Solar panel efficiency might be improved because of developments in quantum physics and nanotechnology, which could also potentially double or even triple the amount of electricity generated by solar power systems.
The Disadvantages of Solar Energy
The preliminary investment required to buy a solar power system is significant. This covers the cost of purchasing solar panels, an inverter, batteries, wiring, and having the installation done. Despite this, solar technology is always being improved, so it is reasonable to anticipate that costs will become more affordable in the not too distant future.
Even though it may still be possible to harvest solar energy on days with clouds and rain, the solar system's effectiveness will be significantly reduced. Solar panels are only able to capture solar energy when they are exposed to sunlight successfully. As a result, only a few days of overcast and wet weather may impact the energy system. Additionally, you need to remember that gathering solar energy is impossible during the nighttime hours.
Thermodynamic panels, on the other hand, are an option you may consider using if you need your water heating solution to function throughout the night or during the colder months of the year.
- Solar Energy Storage Is Expensive
It is necessary to put solar energy to use immediately; alternatively, it may be stored in very large batteries. These batteries, which are used in solar systems that are not connected to a grid, are able to be charged throughout the day so that the energy may be utilized during the night. Even though this is a good way to use solar energy all day long, the price is pretty high.
The majority of the time, it is more cost-effective to rely only on solar power during the day and switch to using the power grid in the evening (you can only do this if your system is connected to the grid). Since you tend to use the most energy during the day, you can meet the vast majority of your needs with energy from the sun.
- Uses a Lot of Space
If you want to generate a greater amount of power, you will need a greater number of solar panels. This is because you want to absorb the maximum sunlight possible. Solar photovoltaic panels take up a lot of space, and some roofs aren't big enough to fit the number of panels that someone might want to install.
You can also install some of the panels in your yard. However, they will require exposure to sunshine in order to function properly. If you don't have the room to install all of the solar panels that you want, you may always choose to install fewer of them and still meet part of your requirements for electricity.
- Concerned with Pollution
Solar energy may be associated with pollution; however, compared to other energy sources, the amount of pollution caused by solar energy systems is significantly lower. Greenhouse gases have been linked to the logistics of getting solar panels from one place to another and installing them.
Also, the production of solar photovoltaic systems uses a number of chemicals and goods that could be harmful. This could have an effect on the ecosystem in the area.
Solar energy, on the other hand, produces far less pollution than other forms of alternative energy.