Installing solar roofing in Michigan has many advantages and few drawbacks, but it’s important to have a clear picture before investing in new roofing and energy technology. Let’s look at a few of the perks of going solar as well as some flaws that currently exist in the incentives package.
Advantages of Solar Roofing in Michigan
Solar roofing in Michigan can offer great advantages for the earth as well as the consumer. Solar power saves you more money every year and helps to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.
Solar Roofing Saves Money
The biggest plus of installing solar roofing in Michigan is a considerable return on investment. Solar users can see their reliance on electricity decrease immediately and after 25 years, the panels pay for themselves. If homeowners explore loan or financing options for solar installation, their initial investment is significantly lowered and they can reap the energy savings more quickly — as soon as the first year.
Solar roofing also has the advantage of being modular, so you can start small and add to your roofing panels over time. Once you start enjoying the payoff of solar energy, you can reinvest those savings in more panels to expand your capacity.
Solar Roofing Saves Energy
Most solar roofing systems attach to the electricity grid that runs to your house. When there’s sun, you pull more power from the solar panels and pad the rest with traditional electric power. When there’s excess solar power, you use what you need and the rest is sent back along the grid to the power company. If you install a battery system with your panels or arrays, you can store this extra energy and use it to help power your home during the winter months.
Solar panels work year-round. Even on cloudy days, when the light is diffused, panels are working to convert photons into useful electric energy. Solar panels work even more efficiently when the surface is cold, so sunshine in the winter is just as powerful as the summer sun’s rays.
Solar Roofing Saves the Planet
It’s no secret that solar energy is a green power source that helps fight our reliance on “dirty” energy resources. It’s not only more efficient and kind to the earth, but it’s also significantly cheaper. Most Michigan residents pay about 16 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh). That puts us at #11 for most expensive electricity rates in the country — and prices for fossil fuel energy continue to rise year after year. Installing solar now will start earning you savings right away and increase its return every year.
It’s clean, it’s efficient, it’s economical. Solar power is the future and it’s bright.
Disadvantages of Solar Roofing in Michigan
As with any new technology, there are a few drawbacks. Here are some things to consider before going solar.
Solar Roofing Requires Investment
While solar energy can offer significant savings in the long run, it does require an initial investment. Don’t let upfront costs deter you from seeking clean energy, however. There are solar loans, power purchase agreements, and other creative financing options that allow you to start reaping the benefits early and avoid spending a chunk of change from the get-go. Some loan options are even cheaper than buying solar with cash because the savings build up immediately and go toward future payments.
Solar Roofing Requires Minimal Maintenance
Solar panels are easy to maintain, but they do require a little care to keep them functioning at top capacity. They can be washed with just water with no cleaning additives that could abrase the surface. Using a squeegee or brush made for this purpose can help keep panels free of debris. Your panels won’t be damaged if you don’t clean them and they’re extremely resistant to hail and inclement weather.
Snow can cover solar roofing in Michigan and diminish its ability to collect light, but won’t cause damage to the panels at all. If you choose to remove the snow, the process is simple. Using a long broom, brush the snow away from the panel. You don’t even need to remove all of the snow. As the sun heats the surface of the panel, remaining snow will melt away on its own.
Solar Roofing Requires Incentivizing
Tax credits for using solar energy to power your home have gone away… for now. Tax credits were formerly offered to those willing to make an investment in solar power, but utility companies fought to deter people from making the switch. Utility companies fight the legislation because they are threatened by the savings solar will bring to the energy consumer. They lose money when you don’t buy energy from them and don’t want to offer payments to the consumer for excess energy that’s returned. However, as more and more customers are seeing the savings of solar power, its popularity and sustainable advantage can’t be ignored.
Michigan legislators are working to secure more tax benefits for solar users, including restoring net metering, which allows users to save up credits with the power company during high-production summer months and use them throughout the winter. Solar roofing companies recommend you save this energy by installing a battery system. This way, you can store energy for the winter and don’t have to feed it back to the utilities companies.
In 2019, Governor Whitmer signed a new law that makes solar panels exempt from property tax consideration. So while adding solar roofing will increase your home’s value, it won’t affect the taxable value of your property. Unfortunately, energy companies won in preventing net metering from being restored.
Solar companies are hopeful that legislators will continue to support tax breaks for switching to clean energy and restore net metering so savings can be passed on to customers and we can break our dependence on nonrenewable energy sources.
Michigan’s Energy Future: Solar Roofing
Overall, solar roofing in Michigan is a great way to save money and do good for the environment. While there aren’t many tax breaks currently available, renewable energy is quickly gaining popularity with voters and politicians and incentives are likely to return. Solar roofing has a place in the future of energy generation and has shown switching to renewable energy pays off — for your home and the planet.
Still not sure if solar roofing is right for you? Talk to the experts at Werner Roofing. We can go over solar roofing options with you and show you the savings a new roof could earn. Give us a call at 616-844-5382 or reach out online today.