Gina from New York writes:
I was wondering what you thought of homemade solar panels. I have been told by a few people that it is fairly easy to make your own panels. Is it worth looking into in your opinion?
ANSWER: Hey, Gina. I’ve already written about this before in my post Energy4-Earth Scam. Within that post, there’s a link to this explanation that really breaks down the scam, how it works, and why it’s bogus.
Honestly, for most people except extreme hobbyists who happen live next to a solar manufacturing dumpster for easy access to discarded (broken) photovoltaic cells, these “Do-it-Yourself” (DIY) solar kits are a waste of time and money.
- Even if the materials were readily available at your local hardware store, as claimed (false), it will take hundreds of hours to build enough cells to power your home.
- Second, your DIY home built solar panels will not meet any electrical codes. In other words, they’re potentially a fire hazard.
- Third, you’ll have to hook it up to your own electric panel, so you’ll have to hire an electrician.
- Fourth, because DIY solar panels are not approved by the state, you don’t get the benefit of net metering, which many states provide to consumers.
- Fifth, because DIY solar panels are “home made” from spare parts, they end up looking pretty gnarly and ugly on your roof, decreasing your home value. Conventional panels look much better and actually increase your home value.
- Sixth, Say goodbye to any State of Federal rebates or incentives. These are applicable only to solar panels that are UL listed (deemed safe by the Feds) and/or registered with your State (deemed safe by your State). I could go on….
Bottom line, even if the materials were free, I wouldn’t put DIY solar panels on my roof.
Hope that helps,
Last modified: December 28, 2018