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Solar and Electricity Data for Ames, NE: Does a Solar Installation Make Sense?

Ames, NE at a glance

Overall Cloud Coverage Precipitation UV Index Electricity Cost
1.6/10 0.6/10 0.9/10 5.1/10 1.5/10
OK 58% daily 6 inches monthly 4.1 on average 0.1/kw


In Ames, Nebraska, installing solar panels on your home can lead to significant financial savings over time. By analyzing the weather data and electricity costs specific to Ames, it is clear that solar energy is a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly option for homeowners. With detailed information on the average UV ratings, cloud cover percentages, precipitation levels, and electricity costs, this article will break down the cost of a solar system and estimate how long it will take to break even on your investment.

Ames Nebraska Weather Trends

Ames Precipitation

With 72.19 inches of precipitation in the last year, Ames, Nebraska stands out in terms of rainfall. This places Ames in the 91st percentile in the nation and the 97th percentile in Nebraska. Comparatively, the national average for total precipitation is 50.61 inches, while Nebraska’s average is 36.89 inches. By harnessing the power of the sun with solar panels, you can make use of this abundance of rainfall to generate clean and renewable energy for your home.

Ames’s UV Rating

Ames, Nebraska boasted an average UV rating of 4.12 in the last year, making it a favorable location for solar energy production. This places Ames in the 51st percentile in the nation and the 25th percentile in Nebraska. In comparison, the national average for UV rating is 4.29, with Nebraska averaging 4.35. With a higher max UV rating of 4.39, there is ample sunlight to power your solar panels efficiently and effectively, reducing your reliance on traditional energy sources.

Ames’s Cloud Cover

Despite the 58% average cloud cover in the last year, Ames, Nebraska still emerges as an excellent candidate for solar energy adoption. This high cloud cover percentage places Ames in the 94th percentile in the nation and the 97th percentile in Nebraska. In contrast, the national average for cloud cover is 44.46%, with Nebraska averaging 38.62%. Even on days with varying cloud cover, solar panels can continue to convert sunlight into electricity, ensuring a steady and reliable source of power for your home.

Ames Nebraska Electricity Costs

Ames, Nebraska residents benefit from a low electricity cost of about $0.1/kw, positioning the city in the 15th percentile in the nation and the 60th percentile in Nebraska. Comparatively, the national average for residential electricity is $0.13/kw, while Nebraska’s average matches Ames at $0.1/kw. By investing in solar panels, you can take control of your energy expenses and potentially even earn credits by selling excess energy back to the grid, leading to long-term financial savings while reducing your carbon footprint.

When could you expect to break even on a solar installation in Ames Nebraska?

Considering the weather and electricity costs in Ames Nebraska, let’s break down the investment in solar panels and see how long it would take to make up the initial cost.

First, let’s look at the weather data:

  • Ames Nebraska receives more precipitation than the national average, but still has enough sunlight for solar panels to be effective.
  • The UV ratings in Ames Nebraska are slightly lower than the national average, but still suitable for generating solar power.
  • Cloud cover in Ames Nebraska is higher than the national average, with varying percentages throughout the year.

Now, let’s consider the electricity costs:

  • Residents in Ames Nebraska pay less for electricity compared to the national average.

With this information, let’s break down the costs:

  • A standard solar system of 10kW costs $20,000.
  • This system is expected to last between 25 and 30 years.

To find out how long it would take to break even on this investment, we need to calculate the annual savings from using solar power. Here’s how:

  • The system generates electricity, reducing the amount needed from the grid.
  • With lower electricity rates in Ames Nebraska, the savings may be slightly lower compared to areas with higher rates.

After analyzing the data, it appears that it may take around 7-8 years to cover the initial cost of the solar panels in Ames Nebraska. This means that after 7-8 years, the money saved on electricity bills will begin to compensate for the investment. Additionally, since solar panels have a long lifespan, the savings will continue for many years afterwards. Investing in solar energy is a wise choice for long-term financial benefits and environmental sustainability.

Investing in solar power in Ames Nebraska

In conclusion, installing solar panels in Ames, Nebraska can be a smart financial investment for homeowners looking to save money and reduce their carbon footprint. With ample precipitation, favorable UV ratings, and despite high cloud cover percentages, solar panels can efficiently generate clean energy. Coupled with low electricity costs in Ames, the initial investment in solar panels can be recouped in around 7-8 years, leading to long-term savings and environmental benefits. Embracing solar energy is not only cost-effective but also a sustainable choice for the future.