Implementing Solar Energy For Homes Is Easier Than You Think

by Owner on March 6, 2011

So you’ve made the responsible decision to solarize your home, you studied the details concerning solar energy for homes, you consulted an expert or two, but where to begin? It’s important to remember that while solar panels, wind turbines, and tankless water heaters are all fantastic ways to create a sustainable home, you can begin by you journey without breaking the bank.

Many times consumers who are interested in sustainable technologies become so lost in all of the possibilities that they often neglect the simplest form of savings. For example you may begin by eliminating drafts of wind that are currently slipping through the cracks and hiking your energy bills. By eliminating this simple problem your energy bill can drop by more than 40%.

Energy efficient windows and doors are another affordable way to begin your renovations before even thinking about solar energy. By reducing the amount of energy that escapes your home, especially in winter, you are reducing the energy from any source that needs to be made available to the grid, which is good for both the environment and your wallet.

Once you have secured your doors and windows, it’s time to get serious about implementing solar energy. The cheapest way to do that is to either buy solar power energy directly, or to fund renewable energy sources by an amount equal to the energy that you use.

To buy solar energy for homes directly, contact your power company. An increasing number of electrical utilities are entering into agreements to buy solar power energy that will increasingly take the place of fossil fuel energy. They will usually assess you a small surcharge on top of your monthly bill in exchange for your request, which goes to funding the as-yet more expensive home solar energy.

If your power utility does not provide that service, you can reach out to a company that sells Renewable Energy Certificates (REC’s). Each REC is equivalent to a unit of energy. You basically buy enough REC’s to cover the amount of energy you use. The company then turns around and invests this energy into wind, solar, and other renewable energy projects that eventually end up sending that energy to the grid. It’s an indirect way of getting solar energy for homes and businesses, because you are helping to ensure that the amount of energy you use is replaced in the grid by renewable energy. Do your internet research in order to find a company that sells REC’s in your area.

Once all the previous steps are taken, it’s time to consider direct solar energy collection. Solar energy homes are often times made up of solar panels, solar outdoor accent lighting, and other solar-powered equipment–as well as a bank of batteries needed to store and disburse stored energies throughout the night when the sun is no longer present.  Don’t let the aforementioned laundry list of products deter you, more often than not a homeowner can add new and sustain technologies as he or she goes along.

By now we’ve all heard of and or researched solar panels and most of us understand how they work. A solar panel is affixed to a place outside the home, often times on the roof of the house or garage, and the panels traps and stores the energy of the sun, further storing that energy into a bank of batteries usually stored somewhere inside the home. Of course the more panels the better, but every new addition counts.

If you’re ready to take the leap into solar panels, you have to figure out how much power you need and then install them. If you are the handy do-it-yourself type of person, it is definitely possible to build your own solar panels. If not, then you can find a contractor with experience in solar panels who can install them for you.

Installing solar energy for homes need not be complicated or expensive, and need not involve only the installation of solar panels. There are a variety of ways to capture the sun’s life-giving energy–from having more energy efficient homes to making sure that the power that arrives from the power company comes from solar power or other renewable sources. You can also invest in home solar energy sources. Whether you go that route or you end up installing solar panels, the more solar energy you use, the more you can reduce your carbon footprint.

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