Of all of the green energy choices, solar energy can bring in the most money. The sun comes up and shines for free and you can use it for nothing, if you have a solar system array on your roof. Check this article out to find out some of the ways that you can use to save money with solar energy.
Solar power can help you in a number of ways. You can buy a set of outdoor lights that use solar power and put them in the ground in your front yard; then, you’ll have a lighting system to greet your guests without adding to your power bill. Any appliance that you can attach to your electrical system can benefit from solar power.
Tip: When you can, take showers rather than baths. Running a bath uses up to 40% more water than a shower does, which means more energy is being used and your water bill will sky rocket.
Adding solar power to a water heater is a common entry point for many people into solar energy for the home. Instead of installing a full array of panels, you just install a handful, and run the circuitry right to your hot water heater. Then, the power goes right from the sun for use in your hot water heater. If you aren’t using your hot water heater, the energy goes into your grid for use throughout the rest of the house.
The best place for solar cells on most homes is the roof, because that has the most access to the sun without blockage from trees, telephone poles and other structures. You want to make sure, though, that the pitch of your roof will point the panels toward the incoming sunlight. A contractor can help you make that determination as to the best placement.
Tip: A great tip for green energy use is to ensure that your home is properly insulated and has a high R value with the insulation. The best insulation has a higher R value.
If you notify the electric company that you are installing solar panels, then you can arrange to sell them your excess power. If you do not use all of the energy that your solar panels generate in an entire month, then you should get a check back from your utility. Most utilities are glad to have the contributions, because electricity use is increasing in the United States each year, and the more customers there are with solar panels, the more relief the grid will get, especially in the hottest part of the summer.
You’ll want to check with your HOA (homeowner’s association) to find out if you can put solar panels in. Most associations do permit this, but there are some who will not allow it. The opposition to solar panels is not as passionate as the opposition to wind turbines is, because solar panels do not stand dozens of feet in the air and block views. However, you definitely want to find out before you place an order with a contractor.
Hopefully, this article has given you some ideas about things to consider when pondering a solar energy array for your house. Using these points as a springboard, you should be able to figure out what questions to ask your local government representative in charge of energy, and the contractors whom you interview when finding one to install your array.
Green energy is much in the news, and offers many alternative energy systems. But what is more reliable than the sun? The solar rays that fall on us are free. They are more sustainable than wind or water. Harnessing them has become a vast industry. If you are intrigued by solar power, read the following tips. They will tell you more about these systems and whether they are right for you.
Where you live is a big factor in whether converting to solar power will be cost efficient for you. If you live on the Arizona desert, the quick answer is “yes.” If you live up near the Canadian border, you will need to give the question more thought, but solar power can still be a good solution for you. Germany is a northern country that has invested in solar power in a big way, and is reaping good results. Technology keeps improving. Solar panels are more efficient, less costly and longer lasting than in earlier days.
Tip: If you want a great green energy source that does not cost a dime, simply look to your legs for power. If you have to make a trip to the grocery store, use your bike or walk instead of driving.
Solar hot water is recommended for anyone. It uses not PV panels but solar water panels. Water is piped into panels on the roof and heated using the sun’s energy, then made available for your use. This system may meet all your hot water needs, or you may need to augment it with some use of electricity for heating water.
The orientation of your roof is important. A south-facing area is usually desired, but some experts prefer an east or west-facing area. The north-facing roof area will not yield much solar power, unless you live in the tropics. Also take a look at shade cast from trees or buildings onto your roof. This will decrease the sunlight available and make solar power systems less attractive.
Tip: Geothermal heating may be something for you to consider. If you live in the right kind of area, you are going to be able to take advantage of the heat that the earth naturally produces.
A benefit of installing a solar power system is that, in many areas, you can sell the surplus energy generated on bright sunny days back to the power company. When your back-up storage batteries are fully charged, you can make money from the extra power your solar panels generate.
Once you have assessed your situation and decided that installing solar power makes sense for you, there are a number of other things to take into consideration before you start. If you belong to a home owner’s association, check first about their rules. There may be limits on how much solar array you can install, and where it can be placed.
You will also want to check with your local government about any limitations, and building permits.
Tip: Consider the possibility of selling some of the green energy you generate to the utility company in order to cover the cost of your initial investment in the energy generating equipment. Many utility outfits today will buy energy directly from consumers and this can really make going greener pay off for you today and well into the future.
You can check with government agencies online to find out the requirements to qualify for tax credits. The federal government offers a 30 percent tax credit on your costs when converting to solar power. To qualify, the equipment you use must be Energy Star rated. State and local governments may offer additional tax credits. These can go a long way towards countering your initial installation costs.
These tips have started you on your way. Weigh all the costs and benefits of solar power over the long term. They may add up to substantial energy savings. Converting to solar power will also make you one of the good folks helping to counter global warming.
If you have a cabin, you know how it can be when the power drops. Powering a remote location is often a problem for electric and gas companies. If you want to have a cabin that always has power, you can rest assured the solar power can do that for you. You just need to keep some things in mind, and this article contains a quick guide to help you pick up solar energy.
1. Determine what you need power for. Part of the reason cabins are so cozy is that they do not function like regular homes. If you have a fireplace, for example, you may find that you don’t need to heat your cabin, for example. Therefore, look around and figure out what it is that you want to power in case of an emergency or a power outage. Some things you may want to power include your refrigerator, radio, freezer, and toilet. Consider whether you want to heat your water as well. You can get a solar energy water tank, if you have the budget or desire for it.
Tip: Do not turn down the thermometer when you are trying to cool off your house faster. The air conditioner works at the same speed either way.
2. Once you determine what you want powered, that can give you ideas about how much solar energy you will need. Small devices will obviously need less energy than an entire cabin. Smaller panels will of course mean a smaller investment up front. You will have to keep track of your money and start saving for these panels, as they are not cheap. That is of course worthwhile, since eventually you won’t need to pay anything for utilities. Not only that, there is a lot of help out there for people who are purchasing solar energy products. There are tax breaks from your local city, state and country to help offset costs.
3. Find out where you will buy your supplies. Your immediate temptation might be to jump online and compare prices on the internet, but your local suppliers may be able to offer you a very attractive price. Shop around and compare prices from a number of different places before buying, but also take care to notice the kind of panels they are selling and whether those panels are superior to others.
Tip: Try heating water using solar power to further implement solar power into your needs. For many people, solar power is still a thing of the future, but it doesn’t have to be.
4. Start saving. It is easier to save when you realize that you are saving this kind of money for the last time in your life. Supercharge your saving efforts by making efficient use of the energy you already live with, turning off appliances when not in use and similar measures. Then save money by selling extra items you own but never use. Have a garage sale, perhaps. Anything you can do to save money will help you get your free energy sooner, so make the effort when possible. Unless you live in your cabin all year long, you have a great deal of time to make this happen.
Now with these tips in mind, you can start looking at how you want to use solar energy in your cabin. That way, you will have power no matter what happens.
Many times people look for a rustic get-a-way vacation cabin, and find just what they want, but beyond the reach of electrical power. Now they must find a way to get light and heat into their wilderness retreat. Solar energy is the answer, and this article provides information about how to make use of it.
You may think finding some used appliances for your cabin is a good idea, but older appliances are not as energy efficient. Look for new appliances in a small size, but large enough to meet your needs while you are staying at your cabin. Many times appliances intended for an efficiency apartment are ideal for a vacation cabin. You can also search for a small, wood-burning stove to provide a way to cook and heat your cabin. Most of the time, a wilderness cabin is located in or near a forest, and plenty of firewood is available.
Tip: Some energy can be saved by using less water. One way to cut down on water use is to install a toilet which uses minimum water with each flush.
You are going to need energy from at least two sources, one to provide heat and hot water, and another to provide electricity for your appliances. If you install just a couple solar panels, the energy they collect can be stored in batteries and will provide electricity. It is a good idea to have a back-up generator available in case the sun does not shine for several days in a row.
You will need hot water for bathing, cooking and cleaning. Most of the time, a solar water heater can provide all you need. If you need very hot water, it can be heated on your wood fired stove. If you do not want to spend money on a solar water heater, consider installing a gravity fed shower that uses water from an overhead tank that you can fill with warm water before showering.
Tip: Do not assume that green energies are too expensive. The initial cost can be high, but most states will give you interesting tax incentives if you invest in green energies.
Before you even purchase your wilderness cabin, determine how expensive it will be to provide the amount of energy you will need. If the cost is too high, perhaps you should consider finding a vacation cottage closer to civilization. Solar panels can be expensive to install, and take a long time to recoup the cost. This is true even on a house you are living in all the time, and even more so for a vacation cabin.
While you are investigating the cost of fitting your cabin with energy producing products, you will also be locating the least expensive sources. Many items can be found locally, but some good deals may be available online.
Tip: Responsibly recycling electronics is a great way to maximize resources. When people think of green energy they think of alternative energy.
Once you have determined the full cost of purchasing and supplying your vacation cabin, proceed with the purchase if it is within your budget. Once you have spent some time in your cabin, you will discover new ways to live comfortably without electricity. Remember, the pioneers did not have electricity for many years.
A wilderness cabin can truly be a retreat away from civilization, but it also means a vacation from convenience. Once you have made the decision to purchase your cabin, use the information in this article to help provide energy for the most necessary conveniences.
Your hot water heater is one of your most energy-consuming appliances. The first step in using solar energy, for many people, is installing a solar hot water heater. It will definitely cut your electric bill, and pay for itself in 2 to 4 years. If you are interested in trying solar and want to install a solar hot water heater, the following tips can help you on your way.
The panels used for solar hot water are different than the photovoltaic panels used to generate electricity for a home. These are heat transfer panels. This is how they work. Water is piped up to them on the roof. There the sun’s rays heat the hot water, which is then made available for your use, whether for showers or dishwashers or handwashing. These panels are efficient and reliable. However, some people want their water heated to a higher temperature than the solar panels produce, or they use more hot water than they produce. If this is the case, the extra work can be done by electric or gas heat. But for many people, the solar hot water heater produces adequate hot water. There is the added advantage that it makes hot water available even when there is a power outage on the grid.
Tip: Try insulating your pipes to decrease the chances of them freezing and to cut the costs for hot water. Another added benefit is that the government will reimburse you up to 30 percent for using highly efficient insulation in your home.
You need far less roof space for the hot water panels than for PV panels, so almost anyone can find a sunny place on their roof to install these heat transfer panels.
Likewise, it is less important to be in a sunny climate because you need far fewer “solar hours” to produce hot water than to produce electricity for your whole house. Solar hot water heaters have been used satisfactorily in almost every region.
Tip: Use a laptop computer in contrast to a desktop computer. A laptop computer only uses 15 to 25 watts of energy during normal use, whereas a traditional desktop computer and monitor consume a whopping 150 watts.
How many heat transfer panels you will need to install depends on your hot water usage. If you have a 30 gallon tank now, you will need less than if you have a large tank. A professional can help you estimate the square footage of panels you will need.
The panels should be placed where there is the most sun exposure but also as close as possible to your hot water tank. The longer the pipes, the more heat is lost–especially in winter.
Tip: Buy a programmable thermostat. An Energy Star programmable thermostat will regulate your home’s temperature year-round, both day and night.
A solar hot water heater can be used independently of any other solar installation. But once you experience the cost savings from solar hot water, you may want to try using solar energy for other needs. You needn’t jump to using solar energy entirely. There are other partial steps you can take. You can use photovoltaic panels to run your refrigerator or freezer. Besides the cost savings, you will have the security of power even during a grid outage. This can save you a lot by keeping your food from spoiling during an outage. There are other solar products for limited use. One can heat your swimming pool. Solar lights can be used outdoors to light your deck or garden. You can check out what is available by visiting online sites that sell solar equipment.
As you can see, you can start small with solar power and still gain cost advantages. Every time you replace power from the electric grid with solar-generated power, it reduces the burning of fossil fuels and counters global warming.
Caring for the Earth is the responsibility of every single one of us. There are many different types of green energy available, we just have to make use of them. So, how can you make your life a little more green? Just keep reading on.
Stop using bottled water. Bottled water uses some other city’s tap water; in addition, bottling water wastes lots of energy. If you don’t trust your community’s tap water, buy a re-usable water bottle for drinking and use a water filter that you could replace every few months.
A good benchmark to use when determining how much power a new solar system is likely to generate is the number of hours of sunlight in the winter. This prevents any unanticipated effects from a winter months, and it keeps you ahead of the game for summer months. Combining this method with a net utilities plan will mean getting back money from the electric company during the summer, too.
Keep your thermostat in check with the season. During winter months, lower the thermostat and during the summer, raise it. If you do this, as well as wear weather-appropriate clothing, you will spend less on air conditioning.
Use an on-demand water heater to save energy. Traditional water heaters run constantly, heating the water when it’s completely unnecessary. This type of point of use heater warms the water as it is required, and can result in significant cost savings.
Put the temperature of your water heater down to 120 degrees to be more green and cut down on costs. A standard family can save a lot on their bill, up to 10 percent monthly and still have enough hot water to use.
Save energy by installing a new boiler. Previously, boilers were no made to be energy efficient; however, now they are. In addition to generating small amounts of carbon dioxide, which benefits your health, they can help to decrease your utility bills.
Consider using rainwater for different things in your home, like your toilet. This will save you money on your water bill and have a positive impact on the environment. If you wish to collect rainwater it does not have to be too complicated, simply place containers outside during the rain and then lid them when full.
If you install your own solar panels, be sure that you consider what direction the sun will be throughout the year. A house located within the northern hemisphere should have south-facing panels. This way, you will be able to take full advantage of the solar power.
Buy rechargeable batteries for all of your gadgets instead of using the disposable version. Traditional batteries get thrown into the trash, and that is very bad for the environment. Save money and help the environment by purchasing rechargeable alternatives. Savings over the life span of rechargeable batteries are incredible.
There are constantly new job opportunities in the field of green energy. If you are looking for a career change or want to make helpful suggestions to your kids about career paths, do not overlook this sector. There has been increased demands for solar and wind technicians.
Putting the heat to 60 degrees in the middle of the night, or when you’re gone, is a great way to conserve energy. Having the heat set at 60 degrees uses the minimum quantity of energy possible. This helps you minimize the amount of energy that you use and helps you save money as well.
We need to be using more green forms of energy, now more than before. It may be true that all power sources impact the environment somehow, but it’s possible to minimize that impact with green energy. After reading this article, you can go green!
You may be amazed when you learn about the many ways green energy can be used in the home, ones that are easy to implement and don’t cost a fortune. This article will give you some great information for using green energy at home, so you can reap its benefits.
Think about using a geothermal system to upgrade your home’s energy efficiency. This type of temperature control system works by running water and refrigerant through underground pipes. The pipes then feed into a machine that heats or cools the home. Since underground temperatures remain steady, the system runs more efficiently.
Electric heaters should only be used when necessary in order to be more green. Use a fireplace in place of the heater and wear warm layers of clothing. Cool air helps sleeping patterns, as well as improving breathing.
Try bamboo products when buying wood items. Bamboo is a very green product and is technically a grass, but it is stronger than many commercially available woods. Many items are now available in bamboo. Try bamboo in your flooring, utensils, or cutting surfaces instead of traditional woods. This saves energy when it comes to the production and recycling of manufacturing products.
Desktop computers require a lot of energy, so why not opt for a laptop? Making this switch can reduce your power consumption by up to 75%. This is especially true if you are an Internet addict or do heavy word processing. You can also bring your computer anywhere if you have a laptop.
An uncommon option for those consumers who see themselves as very green is to have a home made from straw bales. Straw is very affordable and provides excellent insulation. If building your entire home from straw bails is not something you want to do, then think about including a small structure on your property.
You can obtain hot water for a cheap cost with solar energy. Get a solar hot-water system. You have a choice between both an indirect or direct circulation system. Indirect systems are the best option for those who have frozen pipes during the winter.
Check whether your furnace filters need to be replaced each month. Make sure that you actually replace these filters at least once each year. Also, put filters on vents that dispense warm air. This will help ensure debris doesn’t enter heating ducts, thereby reducing your efficiency.
Wear lightweight, natural fabric during the summer instead of running your air conditioner. Natural fabrics, such as cotton, allow skin to remain cool by drawing moisture away from skin. Wear lighter colors since warmer ones can make you warm and cause you to rely on the A/C.
The use of green energy is gaining more popularity, which signals the creation of new jobs. Think about changing careers or advising children to prepare themselves for working in this industry. Seek out information on new jobs relating to green energy, like a wind or solar technician.
You should turn off all appliances, lights, and any other devices when they’re not in use. Just by making some simple mindset alterations, a large amount of money can be saved in energy costs. Think in advance about what you need to do, and make it a habit to turn off anything that you are no longer using.
When choosing new windows or doors, consider the energy ratings as you shop. Double or triple glazed windows and well-insulated doors prevent a lot of wasted energy while keeping the inside temperature more comfortable. This will reduce both your home’s heating and cooling bills.
This article is full of easy, simple tips, which means there is no excuse not to get started. You will feel better once you begin to adopt green energy in your home, so begin as soon as possible.