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solar panels on roof

I'm thinking of placing solar panels on the roof of my house and garage. What price range should I expect? Will I actually save on electric bills? If so, how long will it take for my investment to pay off? 1 year, 5 years, 10 years? Thanks.

Re: solar panels on roof

You will need to do some research to decide the intended purpose of the solar panel system.

For example ... is the intended use to be off grid or only for back up or grid tie systems ..... will determine the cost which all require more than just the solar panels.

Also check with local electrical utility providers whether they participate in partnership with solar sytems .... as well as State incentive programs for solar systems.

Here's a couple of links for some information :



Re: solar panels on roof

I agree with Canuk , if you think that you will be self sufficent you better seriously research it because the sticker price will shock you.

Re: solar panels on roof

best answer search solar gridtie systems

Re: solar panels on roof

I have had a 3 kilowatt PV system on my roof for five years. It offsets 100% of our electricity per year. More than we need in summer, less than we need in winter. It is grid tied, no batteries. With the cost of electricity so low, don't even calculate pay back period, unless you live in California, (payback is quicker with their incentives). It WILL increase the value of your home. There are federal and state incentives to do a project like this. Check out dsireusa.org for a listing of incentives. Also, check out Homepower magazine. It's got tons of practical information about renewable systems (PV, wind, biodiesel, etc.) You'll read about real world systems and costs and payback information. Have a professional installer do the work, findsolar.com The cost is not that bad, and they will install it correctly saving you money on fixes and changes that may occur if you install a system yourself. You can do it, but much studying is needed. Lastly, check out altenergy.com for pricing information. It's a retailer, but there's much information. Good forums there too.

Our 3kw system cost $25k, but we got $6K back from a state incentive program.

Good luck.

Re: solar panels on roof

I would suggest you to check on this Solar panel factory.
I bought my whole solar system from them .Their solar panel is so cheap.
Their website is : http://www.shinesolar.net .Check them out:)

Re: solar panels on roof
scorpionfun wrote:

I would suggest you to check on this Solar panel factory.
I bought my whole solar system from them .Their solar panel is so cheap.
Their website is : http://www.shinesolar.net .Check them out:)

Hey There

Thanks for recommending us.

Re: solar panels on roof

Going solar will never pay for itself.

Every once in awhile I get the urge to look into solar panels and the first time I did was around 1975 - the cost to go total solar power was $9,000... my electric bill at that time probably averaged less than $30 bucks/month so the payback would never come even if you lived to be 110!

The last time I looked into it was about 2 years ago, at the time a complete system was upwards of $60,000... today my average electric bill is probably around $150/month, so again going solar won't pay for itself in my lifetime.

And we haven't even talked aboout the how many batteries you want - do you want to have power to just make it through the night or do you want to store a day or two worth of power - batteries can easily add up to be half the total system cost... and there's the optional auxiliary gas generator for those extended periods of rainy/cloudy days. Then combine all this with the complicated wiring and automatic transfer switches.

Plus there's the continuing maintenance cost involved - those batteries have a finite lifespan and will need replacement after 3-4-5 years and then there are solar panels themselves that have to be kept clean for it to produce the maximum benefit - are you doing to be climbing on the roof every month with a bottle of Windex and a rag?

Basically solar is about how much do you want to spend? I have come to view solar power as a nice idea, but for most homeowners it's only and idea. Doing it to get 'off-the-grid' or to be totally 'green' or maybe for just the 'cool factor' is fine, but if you're doing it from a financial point of view it isn't worth it... you just can't beat the price of electricity you get from the local utility.

Re: solar panels on roof
libcarp wrote:

Going solar will never pay for itself.... you just can't beat the price of electricity you get from the local utility.

We purchased a home that had solar panels on the roof that the previous homeowner was installing himself. Unfortunately he died before he could finish the work and putting the panels on the roof was about as far as he got. We've had estimates to finish the installation and make it a working system. Those estimates ranged from about $25,000 to $45,000! It's crazy! At those kinds of prices we can afford to get all the electric we need from the power company and we figured that we could also leave all the lights, TVs, and the AC on max all the time and still come out ahead!!! How can anybody justify going solar at those prices?

Re: solar panels on roof

The costs for solar panels in this thread are very outdated. Current 2009 prices for residential solar panels are much lower, by about 40%. Plus, new federal tax credits and some state rebate programs can cover as much as 50% of the cost.

The fact is that installing solar panels for your home or business can cut your electric bill to near $0 today. Take your monthly electric bill and multiply by 12 months, then again by 25 years to determine how much you will spend on traditional utility-generated electricity during the typical life of a solar panel system. Then depending on your energy needs, compare this to the $5,000 to $25,000 cost to install solar panels.

For example, if you spend $200 per month for electricity, then you will spend $81,979 over 25 years, including a low annual price inflation rate of 2.5%. No matter how you calculate it, you will save money with a $5,000 to $25,000 solar panel system. Some so-called experts will say the cost per kilo-watt (kW) for traditional utility energy is less than the cost per kW of solar. Remember, you can pay the utility for 25 years, with annual price increases, or you can pay 80% less with solar power.

If you are worried about the upfront cost for solar panels, there are many financing and leasing programs available to homeowners with good credit. Some loans are tax-deductible too.

A good site to check out is FreeCleanSolar.com . They have the latest information about solar panel costs, rebates, financing and installers.

Re: solar panels on roof

The payback time I've seen in Md. is around 40 years. Way mare than the lifespan of a panel. Tax incentives or grants may lower that, but that just means someone else (taxpayers) is footing the bill.


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