Lowe’s, the home-improvement chain, will begin selling do-it-yourself, 40-pound solar panels nationwide for $895 each.The panels are designed by Akeena Solar, Inc., based in Los Gatos, Calif. Akeena says installation is doable for a novice, but applying for government and utility permits might take some expertise. “You put solar panels on your roof without a permit, bad things (will) happen to you," said Jeff Wolfe, CEO of solar installer groSolar. "The utility could shut off the power."Akeena panels produce 175 watts of electricity, enough to power a flat-screen TV. Most purchasers will want more than one. Lowe’s also is offering software that allows homeowners to use their home computers to monitor the performance of each panel.
Source: Associated Press, Chris Kahn (12/10/2009)