How much would you give to live in an energy-efficient home? With today’s technologies, what’s always been impossible is within your grasp, and solar energy is one of the best ways to accomplish it. Solar energy is the process of using the sun’s radiant rays to power your home. For this to work, you will need to get some solar panels and then have this install by a contractor.
To begin installation, you’ll need a flat area measuring about one hundred square feet. This will serve as a location to install 10-12 solar panels that can produce about one kilowatt of power.
One kilowatt may sound small, but in reality, this will provide you with up 1,600 kilowatts of hours per year. That translates to 5.5 hours of electricity per day if you’re using it to the max. Any leftover power will be stored in the battery which will provide the house with electricity at night or during a blackout.
Aside from the solar panels, you will also need an inverter, battery, charge controller, wires and support structure. Each of these parts are important since the system will not work without all of them together, so whoever you choose as a contractor should have everything ready prior to installation.
Once everything is set up, you’re ready to enjoy your solar powered home. Since it requires minimal maintenance, it can last up to 20 years before you have to replace anything.
If you have a larger area to work with, why not invest in a solar thermal roof? The difference between this method and the first mentioned is that you convert the entire roof into a giant collector. This is significantly more expensive and takes a couple of days to complete, but is worth every penny.
The downside to this method is that unless your roof is oriented toward the south with the steep pitch necessary to maximize solar energy (especially important during the winter), then you’ll have some major construction work ahead of you before you can finish the project.
Solar energy is just one way for you to stop relying on power coming from the grid. When the sun isn’t shining, you have to be ready by preparing other ways to generate electricity
One of the best alternatives in this case is wind energy. Here, you use fans to collect the wind’s kinetic energy. This is similar to windmills that you see in the farm; the only difference is that the blades are connected to a drive shaft that turns an electric generator to produce electricity.
The first and most important step for you is to research to find out if solar energy is feasible for your home. You should know how much power you consume on a monthly basis and also where exactly is your house located. Should your study show it is possible to live on solar energy, you may want to consider applying for a home equity loan to pay for the installation costs. You may get a return on your investment later in the form of tax credit and/or a utility bill.
So what are you waiting for?