?Cost vs. Benefit

How do I choose between buying or leasing a solar energy system? How long do solar panels last? Do solar panels still produce power on cloudy days? Does a blackout affect my solar panels and electricity?

How do I choose between buying or leasing a solar energy system?

Solar leases and PPAs (third-party-owned systems) skyrocketed in popularity several years ago, but may not be the best option. These arrangements allow homeowners to install a solar system on their home without actually paying for the solar equipment. Though homeowners can go solar with no money down, such agreements often expire after only 20 years. 


In addition homeowners are entitled to the 30% federal tax credit only when they actually own the solar power system. This has an immense financial impact because a tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction in federal income taxes owed. A $10,000 solar system, for example, can qualify for a $3,000 tax credit. Solar leases also complicate home sales if the new homeowner cannot take over the agreement. 


When you take into account that the homeowner never actually owns the system on top of their house and is paying the third party for the free energy he/she collects, the best choice becomes evident: buying is better. At HahaSmart we give you wholesale prices, making buying attainable for many who think they cannot afford it.

How long do solar panels last?

All solar equipment comes with a warranty and a guarantee of production quality. In addition, there is usually a contractor warranty on workmanship. Solar panels have an expected lifetime of at least 25 years.  In general, the life of the panels depends on the quality of the technology used and the quality of the overall installation.

Do solar panels still produce power on cloudy days?

Photovoltaic panels can use direct or indirect sunlight to generate power, though they are most effective in direct sunlight. Solar panels are still collecting power when the sunlight is reflected or partially blocked by clouds. The only time solar panels do not collect energy is at night.

Does a blackout affect my solar panels and electricity?

Yes and No. Your solar powered system will be affected by a power outage if your property is connected to the grid. This occurs to prevent emergency responders from being injured by a potential hazard. You can take your system off-grid and connect to a battery to ensure continuous power during a blackout.