Author Archives: Jacob Marsh

About Jacob Marsh

Jacob is a researcher and content writer at EnergySage, where he focuses primarily on current issues–and new technology!–in the solar industry. With a background in environmental and geological science, Jacob brings an analytical perspective and passion for conservation to help solar shoppers make the right energy choices for their wallet and the environment. Outside of EnergySage, you can find him playing Ultimate Frisbee or learning a new, obscure board game.

how much do solar panels cost

The cost of solar panels in 2021: what price for solar can you expect?

Reading Time: 10 minutes

With the cost of solar panels dropping every year, there’s never been a better time to go solar. A solar panel installation ranges in cost depending on a number of factors, including the size of system you want to install, your geographic location, and the type of equipment you want. That all brings us to the key question: how much do solar panels cost? In this article, we’ll break down the cost of solar by system size, state, and panel brand, all of which can significantly impact your final cost of solar panels. We’ll also dive into a few other factors that impact the cost you’ll pay for a solar installation.

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Solar generators

What is a solar generator and is it right for you?

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Solar isn’t just for rooftops – you can use portable solar products like solar generators as a backup power source if the grid goes down, or as a source of electricity for your campsite, RV, or boat. But what is a solar generator exactly? And how does it compare with typical fossil-fuel powered generators? In this article, we’ll break down the key things you need to know about solar generators so you can decide if they’re right for you!

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solar panel angle by zip code

What’s the best angle for my solar panels?

Reading Time: 6 minutes

The angle of your solar array is an important factor in maximizing your energy production. Depending on where you live, the best angle at which you should install solar panels will change. This is because it’s based on the average position of the sun over your property.

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solar power pros and cons

The pros and cons of solar power: what are the advantages and disadvantages of going solar?

Reading Time: 7 minutes

If you’re considering installing a solar panel system, you’ve probably already had your share of exposure to solar marketing, whether through spammy ads promising free solar panels or a knock at the door signaling an eager solar salesman ready to convince you why you should go solar. To make the right decision for your home, you need to be able to distinguish between the real pros and cons of solar power and the solar myths that are sometimes communicated in the media. 

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how many solar panels do i need

How many solar panels do I need for my home?

Reading Time: 8 minutes

It’s no use installing just one solar panel–you’ll need more than that to reap the financial benefits of a solar panel system. While the answer isn’t always so simple, we’ve put together some example cases to help you understand, at a high level, how many solar panels you need to install an effective solar array.

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solar panel recycling

Solar panel recycling: what you need to know

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Solar panels have a lifetime of about 30 years. With the increasing number of solar panels being sold and installed in the U.S. each year, it’s only a matter of time before high volumes of panels are at the end of their useful life and have to be disposed. Solar panel recycling is still at an early stage, but as the solar market continues to expand, recycling processes will have an increasingly important role to play.

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tesla powerwall review

The Tesla Powerwall home battery complete review

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Back in 2015, automaker Tesla Motors set its sights on the home energy storage market and announced the launch of its home battery product, the Tesla Powerwall.

In the past, Tesla Motors has been praised for making high-quality electric vehicles, as well as for their ability to reimagine and successfully rebrand existing technologies. In fact, while Tesla’s automobiles revitalized the 21st-century electric vehicle market, the first electric cars were invented more than a hundred years earlier. 

Tesla’s rebranding of residential-use batteries is in line with their legacy of reimagining existing products. Tesla’s battery may represent the first time in history that everyday homeowners are truly excited about the potential of storing energy at their home. The Powerwall, combined with the exciting Tesla Solar Roof, are both potential cornerstones of Elon Musk’s sustainable energy vision for the future.

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Recycling batteries

Recycling solar batteries and electric car batteries: what you need to know about lithium-ion battery recycling

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Electric vehicles (EVs) are all the rage – and might just be the centerpiece to the clean energy revolution. There’s a catch, however. Along with all of those electric cars comes an equal amount of lithium-ion batteries to power them, and recycling those batteries is a complicated, but necessary, problem to solve. What’s more, home batteries like the Tesla Powerwall are usually made of very similar materials to EV batteries, so there’s even more to recycle.

Similar to solar panel recycling, it’s expensive and difficult to separate out the components of a lithium-ion battery to the point where they can be recycled and reused. Nowadays, lithium-ion battery recycling exists, but not nearly on the scale and at the efficiency we need it to as batteries become more and more popular.

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Tesla's switch to LFP

Tesla’s shift to LFP batteries: why it matters

Reading Time: 3 minutes

In 2020, Tesla announced that they would be manufacturing their Model 3 cars in China using lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries, moving away from their traditional nickel-based chemistries they use in US-based car manufacturing. Tesla doubled down on their bet on iron batteries in the spring of 2021, announcing intent to use LFP batteries in their grid-scale energy storage solution: the Megapack.

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