Want to see greatly reduced monthly electric bills? Then why not take advantage of one powerful energy source that is highly available in abundance – for free? More and more residential households are looking to solar power as an alternative source of energy for their everyday home needs – in fact, it is estimated that about 10,000 families in the United States already use solar energy for their electricity needs. If you yourself want to find out how you can use sunlight for its maximum benefits, here are some tips you need to know:
- Know what solar energy can be used for. It can be effectively used for heating – such as for pools and for bathing and for maintaining a comfortably warm temperature around the home; and for electricity. Solar energy used for these purposes can lower electric bills by as much as 50–85%.
- Know what equipment you need to have installed. The most common equipment used to harness the highly abundant and powerful energy of the sun are called solar panels. Solar panels use silicone crystals that convert sunlight into electric power. You have two main alternatives in storing the harnessed energy: one is through being connected to grid-tie systems which let you stay connected with the power supply of utility companies. These companies will pay you for the solar energy you put in the system. The other is by having your own battery-charging system (this is an okay alternative if you have sufficient solar panels installed). In this case, you will become self-sufficient in energy-generation. Make sure that you inquire with a certified solar panel installer about which option is best for your particular situation.
- Know how much you will expect to shell out initially. Though you will certainly have reduced electric bill costs, know that you have to be prepared for considerable expenses in setting up the necessary equipment. For example, an off-grid system will typically cost you $15,000 to $20,000. Solar water heating, on the other hand, will cost about $1,500 to $2,500. It’s better if you have the system installed during actual house construction. Generally, solar panels are installed on rooftops and roof decks.
- Keep it simple! A great way of using solar energy is by making use of natural lighting in your home. That’s why it’s a good idea (if you’re in the process of having your home constructed) to have the windows angled just right so that the sun’s rays can enter your room. This is another consideration you may look out for when choosing which apartment to rent: if it is adequately lighted up by the sun.
There you have it! These are just some of the ways you can reduce your electricity bill through solar energy. We are truly in the midst of a “green revolution,” where people are more conscious not just about reducing costs, but helping preserve the environment as well. So why not take part in this green revolution now? Good luck!