If you use the internet, chances are you’ve seen a million ads for switching to solar. You’ve probably gotten things in the mail from companies trying to get you to switch, claiming to save you thousands of dollars every year on your electric bill. So you’re probably wondering- Does going solar really save me that much money?
It sure does.
The first thing to consider is how solar works, as this is where most of the money-saving comes in.
Rather than paying National Grid or a similar company for producting your electricity, you are producing your own. The solar panels on your roof absorb the sunlight, turning photons into DC, or Direct Current, energy. This DC Energy flows to the inverter, which converts DC energy to AC, or Alternating Current,energy. This AC power is what powers your home and appliances. The next component is your net meter, which keeps track of how much power your panels have produced. All this energy is then funneled back to the electric grid.
So how does this save you money?
The net meter in your solar system keeps a record of how much energy you have funneled to the electric grid. The electric company then credits you for the electricity you have contributed, and uses those credits to pay for your electricity. This leaves you paying for a fraction of the electricity you use. In some states, if you produce more electricity than you consume, the energy companies will actually cut YOU a check at the end of the year for the cost of the energy that you contributed to the grid.
In additition to producing your own energy, another way you are saving money is by steering away from fossil feuls, whose prices have been steadily increasing since 2003.
Chart shows the rising costs of fossil fuels, which is reflected as a rising electricity cost to the consumer. Source: Edison Electric Institute, U.S. Dept. of Energy.
You are breaking away from an industry that is disappating, and as its availability goes down and demand goes up, the cost goes up as well. Solar energy is FREE until the sun burns out, at which point getting electricity to your home isn’t going to be your biggest concern.
So just how much can you save? Below is a map depicting the AVERAGE savings over a 20-year period, with the national average falling just above $20,000 over 20 years. That’s $1,000 a year, meaning you can save around $84 a month on your electric bill (This number varies from state to state, town to town, neighborhood to neighborhood. Different municipalities have different incentives for going solar. For a more specific idea of your savings, click here).
Mapping of average savings over 20-year period after switching to solar
Don’t rely on energy companies running off of fossil feuls. Their prices are due to skyrocket as natural resources are diminished. Produce your own energy, sell it to your utility company, share it with the neighborhood, and save yourself thousands.
For questions or more information on how you can save money with solar, click here.