Benefits of residential Solar/PV systems

Benefits of residential Solar/PV systems

It goes without saying that electricity is expensive in Jamaica, however many don’t realize just how inefficient the traditional power grid is…


Grid Tie – Is a simple installation of panels where there is no storage present. This system allows the user to reduce their electricity cost by making direct use of energy generated. Unfortunately, with this method, it will not be able to produce power during an electrical outage and will be unable to store energy for any duration of time.

Off Grid – This is the best option for persons who live in remote locations and have difficulty accessing the traditional power grid. This involves setting up a comprehensive system of panels, batteries, inverters, charge controllers, and service panels that will allow complete grid disconnection. You will not receive a bill for you electricity usage and is generally connected across.

Grid Tie with Storage – This system is great if you are already connected to the grid but would like to reduce your energy costs while making use of the stored energy your panels have generated. If there is a power outage, you will be able to draw current from what you have saved.


Solar-PV is the least expensive way to provide electricity to your home, but exactly how much does this system cost?

Typical power consumption for a 2 bedroom house is ~120 KWH/month. Each solar panel has the ability to generate ~.68 KWH/day (contingent on weather conditions) or ~20.4 KWH/ month. In order to generate enough current to provide for the entire house you would need;

  • 6 panels
  • 4 batteries
  • 1 Inverter
  • 1 controller

A system this size provided by SmartHomes will cost ~1.2m JMD.

Should I use Solar PV panels for my home?

Setting up a PV solar system does inherently come with some upfront costs, namely, batteries, panels, and other hardware needed in the installation and transference process (contingent on the system you choose).

At the end of the day, the decision to invest in solar energy is up to the home owner; however before making the decision, one should take a few things into consideration.

  • Savings – If enough energy can be generated from the panels and subsequently stored, your power utility bill could be little to nothing.
  • Clean & renewable – Although modern day PV panels operate around ~20% efficiency, the solar energy that is harvested is 100% renewable.
  • Excess Revenue – Extra energy that is generated from panels can be sold back to the grid.

Taking the leap and installing solar panels is well worth it in the long run. Not only will you be able to see a significant reduction in your energy bills, but you will have the peace of mind knowing that you and your family operate on clean energy.

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