Sometimes, staying mindful of the environment is easy. It doesn’t take much effort to recycle, take shorter showers, or even to set up a compost bin in the backyard. To most, the day-to-day thoughtfulness is easy, but the bigger, more long-term commitments can feel daunting.

However, making the investment in environmentally-friendly solutions often isn’t as complex as it seems from afar. Let’s consider solar power for a moment; according to GreenTechMedia, there are over a million active residential solar installations in the United States. More and more people have begun gravitating towards solar power as the environmentally- and financially-responsible option for their power needs – and the swap isn’t as difficult as you might think. In this post, I answer just a few of the most common questions about transitioning to solar power. However, if you have an interest in doing away with your traditional system, I highly recommend conducting further research of your own!

What are the benefits of solar energy?

This question requires a two-part answer. From a financial standpoint, those with grid-tied solar energy systems are able to save on traditional energy costs and protect themselves against rising oil and gas prices. For example, by shutting their boilers off in the summer and relying on the energy from solar panels to power hot water production, homeowners stand to save hundreds of gallons of heating oil per year! Moreover, from a conservationist standpoint, those who utilize solar energy remove themselves from the ethical issue of utilizing power produced by means that damage the environment.

Will I still receive a bill from my electric company?

Unless your solar panels have battery capabilities, you will still receive a bill from your power company. However, you can cut the number printed on that bill down to almost nothing if the capabilities of your solar panels match your consumption.

Will I still have solar power on rainy days?

Yes, your solar panel will still produce energy on rainy or cloudy days; however, the amount of power produced will be lesser than if it was a sunny day. The more sun the array is able to take in, the more energy it is capable of producing. With this in mind, be sure to remove blockages such as snow and leaves from your panels in order to maintain power levels.

Is solar panel maintenance expensive?

Solar panels usually don’t require much maintenance other than a routine cleaning now and again, and will generally last for an expected 25-35 years. However, if a mechanical mishaps do arise, most solar setups come with a warranty that covers the cost of a maintenance visit.

Is it expensive to set up a solar system?

Not at all! In most cases, those interested in transitioning their property to solar energy can lease a panel array with $0 down and pay a similar price to their current electric bill. However, those looking to maximize their long-term financial returns should consider purchasing, rather than leasing, their solar panels.

How will solar panels affect my property values if I sell my house?

Yes, in a good way! If you own your solar panels, you will likely to sell your property for more than the price of an otherwise equivalent, traditionally-powered home.

How long does the installation process take?

Usually 2-3 days; with 2 technicians, the installation process usually requires 40 hours outside the house and ten inside. But as I mentioned earlier, you won’t need very much aid to maintain your system once the array is set up.

Solar power offers a financially-feasible and environmentally-sound option to those who want to steer away from the problems of traditional power. Consider investing today!