The 21stcentury seems to stand at a midpoint between reliance on non-renewable sources of energy like oil and coal, and the emergence of new and renewable energy sources like wind and solar power. Though solar power is still in its early stages right now, it cannot be denied that this energy source holds a lot of promise.

Solar myth

Graphic: Graphicstock

As with all sorts of new technology, there have been countless misconceptions, myths and even outright lies regarding harnessing the power of the sun. Below are some of the biggest myths regarding solar power and renewable energy sources of the like.

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Solar Myth 1. No Sun, No Power

cloudy solar modules

Do solar panels work in cloudy or snowy weather?
Photo: © Serge Bertasius Photograph.

Since solar power, obviously, relies on the sun to its draw power, a lot of people think that solar panels are deadweight when you take the sun out of the equation. For several years, it has been suspected that solar powered systems can’t work in climates that are cool, cloudy and foggy. This would mean that places that experience rain or snow for days on end would not be able to get enough electricity to get by, from solar power!

The truth, however, is that solar-powered systems work fine on any ambient light regardless of weather. The reason for this is that the system draws power from UV Rays as well as direct sunlight. Also, solar panels can conduct electricity better at colder weather than in heat. Germany, one of the places in the world with the lowest sunny day rates, is known for being the progenitor for most solar-powered energy systems.


Solar Myth 2. It Doesn’t Generate Enough Electricity

Granted that no one has yet mass produced solar-powered cars and that the electricity being generated by the solar systems pales in comparison to coal and nuclear power plants, there is no denying that solar panels are one of the more reliable systems and hold quite a lot of potential for future applications.

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Always keep in mind that solar power works around the concept of drawing energy out of a star, the biggest energy sources in the known universe. With the right equipment, a single solar array system will generate enough power to keep a country as big as the United States running for months in just one day. As an added bonus, it is even expected that carbon monoxide emissions could be reduced drastically, actually within a few years if every major country would start relying on solar power.


Solar Myth 3. Solar Panels Decrease Property Value

solar panel property value

Will solar power effect my property value negatively?
Photo: © Stuart Miles

This would be true if we were still living in the 70s. The truth is solar panels nowadays have become a sleek and appealing additions to the home. In fact, most homes with solar panels experience at least a 10% raise in property value, as the entire place has the added perk of being energy efficient.

Tax-wise, solar panels are not even a problem as several states have exempted solar installations in the computations of property tax. Another complaint with older solar panels is that they are heavy. Newer ones are made of lightweight material which means that they can easily be installed on the roof without compromising its integrity.



Solar Myth 4. PV Panels are prone to break and are maintenance-intensive as well

It has also been the misconception of many that solar panels easily break and require more-than-regular maintenance just to function properly at all times. This, supposedly, makes them unreliable devices to draw power from.

The truth is that new solar panels are made from durable materials that can bear the brunt of harsh climates without compromising their ability to draw energy from the Sun’s UV rays. In fact, there are several high-end panels today that require virtually no maintenance to function properly.


Solar Myth 5. It’s Expensive

One of the more unfortunate myths regarding solar power is that it is only for the rich and well to do´s. However, the core concept of the photovoltaic system was really meant for those who want to save money i.e. normal, everyday citizens. In fact, solar power is ideal for those who truly want to save a lot of money on their electricity bill.

Fortunately, most solar-powered systems today are affordable, depending on your location. Several financing options and government subsidies have eliminated the large upfront cost that one usually identifies with solar power. In essence, one can have solar panels easily installed at home with little to no money down.

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