If you are just starting to ponder solar power, you still have a ways to go. There are many things you need to know before you begin so that you’re able to get the full benefit of solar energy. Read on and educate yourself about solar energy.

You can help the environment by heating your water with solar energy. For example, consider a solar water heater. These can be installed in a sunny location or on top of your roof.

Your home or business should receive at least five hours of direct sunlight per day to get the most from solar energy. Obviously more sun is better when it comes to solar panels, however if you get less than this solar energy can still be a viable option. If you are in an area where energy bills are sky high, solar might still save you money even if you don’t have the optimal sun exposure.

Know that solar panels do not immediately mean free energy forever. You need to be mindful of the fact that solar installations often carry a large up-front price tag. However, you also need to balance that with how much energy you can save over the long run, government incentives and the possibility of selling your excess power into the grid.

Leasing a solar system is an option if up-front costs are prohibitive. In the long run, buying a solar energy system is always the better option, however leasing can still result in lower bills overall. Leasing a system will let you take advantage of the energy savings right away, however be aware that you can be stuck with your contract for up to 10 years.

Know how light mixes with the trees around your property. You may think you’ve got the perfect spot for a solar panel, but watch it throughout the day. The sun coming in from different angles may lead to surprising shadows from trees and foliage. This will affect your solar output.

Look into the warranties of the solar panels you are considering. A quality solar panel should have a warranty for twenty years or more. If you don’t get that with the panels you are considering, then move in a different direction. It may cost a little more, but it’ll be worth it for the peace of mind.

Don’t cheap out on the installation! Yes, you’ve spent a lot of hard earned cash on these solar panels, but that’s the point entirely. You’ve made a huge investment, and you’ll want these panels to be secured perfectly. If you opt for someone with less experience or a spotty track record to save a bit of cash, then you’ll likely have lots of issues in the future.

Solar panels are not very easy to install, so you should hire a professional to get the job done. While you will save a bit of money by trying to do it in your own, you do not want things to be less than perfect. Also, you will most likely end up paying someone to come out and fix the mess you made.

When people talk about solar energy, they mainly think about the large panels installed on the roof of a home. These are popular, but they are not the only way to use the heat of the sun for power. Install attic fans in your roof. The heat from your attic causes the blades to spin and generate power.

If you live in the southwest portion of the United States you certainly should consider using solar power. This area receives the greatest amount of solar radiation throughout the year, so it is the most cost effective place to use solar panels. You should think about the total cost up front.

Once your panels are in place, keep an eye on them and monitor them regularly. Get to know what you daily output of energy is, what everything looks like when operating optimally and even keep a record of such things. This can help you quickly notice when something isn’t working correctly and help you ascertain where the problem is.

If you consider the tips and advice you’ve read in this article, you will have a much easier time formulating a plan for solar energy in your home or business. Any questions you may have should have been answered, so that you can begin. Start using solar power to your advantage.