With solar power being a relatively new idea, solar panel prices are ridiculously high. A simple search on the web will uncover websites returning solar panel prices from around $3000 all the way up to over $40,000. In order to see a return on your 4 or 5 figure investment you’ll be waiting years. The prices will eventually drop as it is expected that in 2010 $90 billion will be spent on solar power, as opposed to only $20 billion last year. There is no doubt that installing a solar panel has great financial benefits in the long run but I was determined not to pay thousands of dollars in order to get one. So I built my own.
Now I can hear you saying, “how the hell can you build your own solar panel?”. Well, let me tell you it’s not nearly as daunting or complicated as you might imagine. I purchased a simple guide and was able to construct my solar panel for under $200. Compare that to the scandalous solar panel prices you get from retailers and you can see how you can make your investment back easily within two months. I wouldn’t wait too long however, some of the materials needed are rising in price due to demand. A ten fold increase in the production of high quality silicon is required to meet demand, which will inevitably drive the prices up.
The guide also contained easy to follow instructions on how to build a power generating wind mill. After two months in operation, my electricity bills have been reduced by 30%. I’m now in the process of making my second solar panel and hope eventually to be able to live completely off the grid. Imagine how that would feel, free electricity!