Solar energy has been gaining popularity across the world as more countries begin to transition to renewable energy.
As the cost of Solar Panels has dropped significantly over the last few years many people are beginning to consider the use of them in their home as an alternative energy source.
We are breaking down all things Solar Panels today, how they work, the many benefits they provide to not only you but the environment, potential EMF dangers of Solar Panels, a brief understanding of smart meters and non-ionizing radiation, and EMF radiation protection options if you choose to use Solar Panels in your home.
How Do Solar Panels Work?
Let’s start out with a brief explanation of how solar panels work. Solar Panels convert energy produced by the heat of the sun into usable electricity for your home and appliances.
Want a little more of the specifics on how they work?
Solar panels absorb the sun’s energy and convert that energy into DC electricity. There is a solar inverter that then converts the DC energy into AC electricity.
The electricity then flows through your home or building powering your electric devices.
Any excess energy is fed to the electric grid. Most electricity companies will then credit you from the excess energy to use on a future bill.
Benefits of Using Solar Panels in your Home
Solar Panels are one of the best options for renewable energy and here are the top 3 reasons why:
1.) Your electricity bill will go way down
Receiving significant savings in your utility expense is one of the main reasons people convert to solar panels as the power source in their home.
With the average electricity bill in the US at $113, you would be saving roughly 27- 40k dollars. Why pay or electricity when the use of the sun is free?
2.) Environmentally Friendly
Electricity is typically generated from fossil fuels. Not only will these someday run out but they are also a big contributor to the world’s pollution.
The simple effort of using solar panels to gather energy from the sun causes no harm to the environment and a really great option for those who are concerned about the environment (which really we all should be).
3.) Little to no maintenance required
Once you have your solar panels installed they can last you 20-30 years without any major maintenance needed.
One consideration is to get your solar panels checked about once a year to make sure everything is working properly.
Do Solar Panels Emit Radiation?
Just about all electronic devices emit some level of electromagnetic radiation. So the question becomes how much radiation do solar panels emit and is it considered a dangerous level or not.
Electromagnetic radiation from rooftop solar panels is minimal the main concern comes with the use of smart meters.
You need to have a smart meter to send electricity back to the grid after installing a solar power system. More on smart meters below.
The electromagnetic radiation (EMR) that the solar panels, as well as the inverters, give off are both non- ionizing. Now, companies like to throw this term around a lot to try and make people feel safe about products.
What is Non-ionizing radiation?
Non-ionizing radiation can occur naturally from the Sun or fire. However, it can also be found from man-made items such as wifi, cell phones, microwaves, power lines, and more.
Why do Utility companies claim that ionizing radiation is nothing to worry about? Because non-ionizing radiation is considered to be less harmful than ionizing radiation. However, just because it is less harmful does not mean it is by any means safe.
With all that said the non-ionizing radiation from the solar panels themselves is pretty minimal, and when proper steps are taken to protect yourself from long term exposure, you will find little in the way of adverse health effects. The main source of radiation, as I mentioned above, is from Smart Meters.
Brief Understanding of Smart Meter
You need a Smart Meter in order to send excess energy back to the grid. S what is a smart meter exactly and why are they considered dangerous?
A Smart Meter is simply a version of electrical meters that are used on the side of your home to read electricity. They have been replacing the Analog Readers that you may be familiar with, or may still have.
The issue with Smart Meters is they transmit your information to an antenna that is then transmitted to the utility company. This form of transportation is a kind of radio frequency, like cell phone, home router, or microwave.
Smart Meters produce non-ionizing microwave radiation that is capable of entering your home all day long.
Utility companies will tell you that because it is non-ionizing there is no danger, in fact, my Mom had a conversation just a few weeks ago where the utility company insisted that there was absolutely no danger and she was completely safe. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.
The radiation that is entering your home all day long can have a very negative effect on your health. In fact, this particular kind of radiation breaks apart DNA molecules and can damage your cells.
How to Protect Against Solar Panel Radiation / Smart Meter Radiation
Add some Distance
One of the best ways to lower your exposure to radiation is to add some distance between you and the device.
When it comes to solar panels, we learned above that they are relatively safe and actually don’t emit much radiation.
However, if you want to air on the side of caution a great solution is to not have the solar panels on top of your house. Although this is one of the more popular places to install solar panels it is not your only option.
Consider installing your panels a small distance from your home or even on the side of your home that has a lower amount of foot traffic.
Another consideration would be to install your converter in a room that has less foot traffic as that was one part of those systems that produced more radiation than the others.
Using a Smart Meter Cover is an excellent option for those who already have a smart meter or those who want to pursue having solar panels for their home.
This smart meter cover claims to block 98% of Smart Meter EMF, RF radiation made with stainless steel this shield was made to withstand harsh outdoor weather.
It is easy to install, all you have to do is slide the cover over the glass portion of the smart meter. Another important feature of this shield is while it reduces RF but still allowing the utility company to receive its signal.
An alternative option to the Smart Meter Cover is the use of EMF protection Paint. Not only will this help protect against the non-ionizing radiation from the smart meter but this will help with any other EMF radiation from your neighbors.
A few options with this paint. If you are mostly concerned about your smart meter on the side of your home you can thoroughly paint the shared wall of your smart meter and home.
If you are looking for more general protection you can paint all the walls in your home with this highly efficient shielding paint.
The company claims that it will help protect against high-frequency electromagnetic fields, low-frequency electric fields, and RF/Microwave radiation.
For those concerned with the ingredients this EMR blocking paint is made from non-toxic ingredients this is a plant based on potassium silicate paint Completely non-toxic while providing long term durability and protection for your home.
This protection paint comes with instructions on how to ground the paint which you must do in order for it to work. This paint is black but they suggest using as a prime coat and then covering with plastic bound, water-based emulsion paint, facade paint, or a silicone resin paint.
Do the Benefits of Solar Panels Outweigh the Dangers?
Renewable energy is an important part of the future of our world, there is no doubt in my mind about that. However, are the potential dangers of EMF radiation exposure worth the current benefits?
After reading the benefits Solar Panels and renewable energy, as well as the potential dangers of solar panels (or more the dangers that using a Smart Meter), you may have you in a tough spot to decide what is right for you.
I can tell you that in my personal opinion the benefits outweigh the dangers is proper protection methods are taken such as the location of solar panels, the use of protection paint on your walls and using a protective cover on your smart meter.
With any source or renewable energy, we will run into some kind of EMF radiation exposure as the energy must be converted for it to be usable.
Do you think the benefits of Solar Panels outweigh the dangers? Would love to hear from you, feel free to comment your thoughts below!