Most people who decide upon a solar power installation end up asking themselves the age old question – should I do it myself or hire a professional? There are pros and cons to both options; however, depending on the individual, one or the other may be a better choice. In this article, we are going to look at the advantages and disadvantages of both DIY and professional solar power installations, and hopefully, by the end, you will know which is right for you.
DIY Solar Power Installation
Advantages of DIY Solar
- Less Expensive: Installing solar panels yourself can save you a lot of money because you won’t have to pay labor costs. Hiring a professional to do the work for you could easily double or triple the cost of your project, and that’s a large chunk of change considering how expensive a solar panel system is, to begin with.
- More Rewarding: There is nothing like the feeling of accomplishment you experience when you’ve done something by yourself that you can look back at and be proud of; any handyman will tell you this. Doing the work yourself is a journey that requires hard work, and hard work always pays off. You may have to do some research to learn how the installation process works, but this is valuable knowledge that you will have for the rest of your life.
- Speedier Process: Sometimes it takes contractors a long time to gather all of the equipment they need. Also, you have to schedule an installation date that fits into their schedule. By performing the installation yourself, you get to order the parts and begin the setup process whenever you are ready.
Disadvantages of DIY Solar
- Hard Labor: Electrical work is a core component of solar panel installations, and if you are not familiar it, the setup process can be a headache. Not only will the physical labor be challenging, but the mental energy will take you on a ride as well. In order to complete the installation yourself, you’ll have to do a lot of research and consult many tutorials. Even then, nothing can prepare you for the roadblocks you will face dealing with your home’s unique needs.
- Legal Issues: To have a viable solar panel installation, you have to apply for permits and meet specific regulations; otherwise, you will face fines. It’s a challenge to figure out if your DIY installation is up to code or not. At the very least, you may have to have a professional sign off on your setup to make sure you meet the legal standards.
Professional Solar Power Installation
Advantages of Professional Solar
- Experience: Professional are professionals for a reason – they have experience. By hiring a professional to do the job for you, you are pretty much guaranteed to have the best solar power setup possible. They will know what to do to provide you with a flawless installation.
- Hassle Free: You’ll be able to sit back and let the work be done for you. Performing an installation yourself is a challenge, and hiring a professional can take the burden off of you. Your daily routine will be unhindered.
- Better Equipment: The professionals will be able to secure warranties on your equipment that you might not be able to attain otherwise. Also, the products they use will more than likely be of higher quality. They have experience with different brands and know which products work best. Trial and error is on their side; they know what fits and what doesn’t.
Disadvantages of Professional Solar
- More Expensive: It’s no surprise that alongside the cost of equipment, there will be labor costs. Hiring a professional can cause the price of an installation to be double or more than the cost of a DIY project. This will not be easy on your wallet; however, that is the price of convenience.
- Slower Process: With a professional, you will have to deal with a lot of paperwork and a lot of waiting around. You’ll may have to jump through hoops to get things started. A professional will explore every avenue to make sure that you meet your utility company’s regulations, and this can be a lengthy process. Meeting regulations is a plus, but having to wait to get the process rolling can be anxiety-inducing.
Final Words on DIY vs Professional Solar
These are the crucial advantages and disadvantages that one needs to consider when determining whether a DIY or professional installation suits them best. What it comes down to is whether or not you have experience with electrical work or at least are willing to put in the time to learn about it. Electrical work is the foundation of a solar power installation. Thus an understanding of it is necessary if you want your setup to adhere to regulations and function properly. There is no right or wrong choice; it’s all about your comfort zone and the effort you are will to put forth.