You are already familiar with solar energy and its benefits for the environment. But there are a few things you should know about solar energy that might change the way you think about it forever. In this article from Linquip, we will discuss the disadvantages of solar energy to help you better know this type of energy and be able to choose wisely when it comes to using this energy as a fuel type for your electricity needs. Continue reading to know all about the disadvantages of solar energy.
Disadvantages of solar energy
The electricity cost rises each year and that’s why many people consider using solar panels to supply their electrical needs. But everything has a downside too and that’s what we are going to explain here.
High Initial Costs
You need to spend a lot of money for setting up a solar power system to use solar energy. Although they will save you money in the long run, they have high initial costs compared to other types of systems that use renewable energy sources. This is among the most important disadvantages of solar energy.
The Efficiency of Using Solar Energy Depends on the Location
The efficiency of solar power you receive largely depends on your location. Different locations have a different amount of annual sunlight and that’s why you need to consider this parameter when thinking about buying solar panels. Although people in places with less sunny days like Russia know how practical solar energy is, they cannot benefit from it as much as the ones living in places that most of the days are sunny with minimum rain and snow.
The benefits of solar energy to the environment are great, but there are a few things that can harm the environment as well. The land that is used by solar fields are massive and you cannot use that land for other purposes. Plus, there are extremely hazardous materials that are used in the production of these panels such as cadmium and arsenide, sulfuric acid, acetone, etc. These are not the only disadvantages of solar energy to the environment, but they are good enough for making the point clear for the ones who want to compare using this energy source to other types.
You can’t have the luxury of moving your solar panels easily from one place to another. You moving your solar power system can be quite expensive and if you think that you should move soon, keep in mind that moving your setup won’t be as easy and affordable as you think.
Not Every Rooftop is Suitable
Some materials that are used in the rooftops of an older home like slate are not suitable for connecting the mounting system of solar panels (that are also known as racking). Plus, different elements on the rooftop such as decks and skylights are also among the reasons that make the installation process hard and might even increase the installation costs.
Speed and Power
Another item in the list of the disadvantages of solar energy is related to solar-powered cars! These cars do not have the same power and speed of typical cars.
No Electricity at Nights
Since there’s no sun in the sky at night, you need to have a battery bank to store the produced power for nights.
Are You Really Saving Money?
When it comes to solar energy, everyone thinks that you automatically save money in the long run by installing solar panels. But there’s a parameter that many people forget to consider: The current electricity cost! If your bills are already low, you are actually not saving that much.
Solar panels are not aesthetically beautiful for some people. These panels are noticeable and anyone who’s passing by will notice them either in the yard or on the rooftop. That’s why some people are reluctant to have these panels on their roof.
Using solar power systems largely depends on the absorption of photons (from the sunlight). There are a few factors such as clouds, snow, etc. that can limit the amount of sunlight available in the area. This is also considered as one of the disadvantages of solar energy since you can’t have access to the photons all the time, forcing you to find options for saving the produced electricity for the time of needs.
Another thing to consider about using solar energy by the means of solar panels is the size of the solar system setup. If the whole building wants to use solar energy, you might need a large solar array. Single panels can’t provide the demanded power and as a result, you need large arrays to compensate for this lack of efficiency. Plus, the batteries may take up a lot of space as well which adds up to the space that solar panels require.
Energy Storage Costs
The last item on the list of solar energy disadvantages is about storage costs. Energy storage is rather expensive when it comes to solar energy. Many people are struggling with the prices of different battery storage system options that allow them to store excess electrical energy. These options are currently expensive and the owners have no choice but to buy them to store electrical energy for the times that panels can’t produce enough electricity. The other option is to stay connected to the traditional power grid which increases the costs as well.
That was all there’s to know about the disadvantages of solar energy. Solar energy is still a better choice than fossil fuels that will run out and are a great threat to the environment, but all the factors mentioned above should be considered when you want to buy solar panels for your place. Do you know any other disadvantages to add to this list? Comment below and let us know what you think. You can also sign up on Linquip to talk to our experts and get the answer to all your questions in a flash.