Should I Cut Down Trees When I Switch to Solar?

December 16, 2020
« Back to Blog

One of the main hindrances to getting the most out of your solar panel system is that there is too much shade on your property. When your solar panel system is under too much shade, the question inevitably comes up if you should cut down trees. Reducing your carbon footprint and doing your part to reduce greenhouse gases by switching to solar feels excellent, but it’s a bit ironic to cut down trees to accommodate solar. The inconvenient fact is that trees and solar panels are not really compatible. Branches and leaves can prevent your system from getting the most sunlight, which restricts the amount of clean energy they can produce if they were in a clear and sunny area. 

Factors to Consider Before Cutting Down Trees

Before you decide to cut down trees to enable your solar panel system to get more sunlight, be sure to exhaust your options. Many homeowners can increase sunlight by trimming or pruning trees on their properties rather than cutting down the tree entirely. There are other factors to consider as well, before cutting down trees. 

  • Costs of tree removal. Depending on where you live and how many trees need to come down, hiring a tree removal service provider can cost you a small monetary amount like $200. However, in-depth tree services can run over $1,500 or more. Installing solar panels is affordable, but investing an extra thousand or more to make sure that trees don’t shade your panels can cost more than most homeowners think. 
  • Environmental impact. Trees provide us with oxygen and therefore removing them impacts the environment – something many solar enthusiasts are conscious of. You can check out the Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies calculator from the EPA by visiting this website. A typical residential solar panel system generates 6kWh per year for the lifetime of the system, which is about 30 years. This eventually adds up to a lot of clean energy generated – about 180,000 kWh. 
  • Impacting wildlife. The trees on your property might also be home to wildlife. Cutting down trees will take away their home. Removing trees on your property can also impact your mental health or quality of life. These are all things to consider before breaking out the chainsaw and cutting down trees on your property. 

Get Answers from the Solar Pros

Wondering if you should cut down trees to reduce shade and enable your solar panel system to get the most sunlight is just one of the many questions you likely have about making the solar switch. With a free 20-minute Q&A from the solar pros at All-In-1 Energy, you can get all of your questions answered and your concerns addressed. Fill out the convenient form here on our website to schedule your conversation today. Speak to a real person and have a real conversation, not one with a computer. We look forward to talking with you!