Solar energy is a hot topic right now. After decades of development, solar panels have reached a point where the energy they generate over their lifetimes is worth $25,500 to $33,000 more than the cost of installing them. In other words, they pay for themselves and then some — and they’re still getting cheaper.
That fact makes them a smart financial investment, even before you consider how they raise the value of a home. Add in the benefit to the environment — since, unlike traditional coal- and oil-based power, solar doesn’t create air pollution when generating electricity — and it’s no wonder this technology is picking up in popularity.
Unfortunately, there’s also a lot of misinformation out there, which this Redditor ran into with their HOA.
It’s not uncommon for HOAs to ban or sharply restrict solar panels, but it’s usually for aesthetic reasons. This neighbor had a different reason.
“One of them brought up that heavy metal contamination from rainwater runoff and unsealed panels is a big concern for residential solar on properties with well water, which we all are in this neighborhood,” said the original poster.
It’s a terrifying idea — but there’s no reason to believe it’s true, as this Redditor found.
“After quite a bit of googling I’m unable to find any supporting evidence of this claim, nor could the person who mentioned it provide any,” said the original poster. “Certainly for solar panel production and recycling facilities and the like, there are environmental concerns, but at point of use is this really a thing?”
“It’s not for you to prove that they don’t contaminate, it’s for them to prove that they do,” said another commenter. “Without providing a source their claim about heavy metal contamination is just nonsense and should be ignored by the HOA.”
“The reason you can’t find any evidence for this spurious claim is that there is none,” said a third Redditor.
For those who want to challenge an HOA decision about solar panels or other eco-friendly upgrades, check out this guide.
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