A three-figure utility bill at the end of the month is reason enough to get a bad headache. Looking for a way out? In case you live in one of the Sun Belt cities, harnessing the sun’s power can be the most viable solution to your billing-woes. If you take a stroll down the residential neighborhoods, you will notice that solar panels have become an integral part of the urban landscape in Tampa, Miami, Las Vegas and other major cities in the Sun Belt. And for good reasons.
Be it is heating and cooling your home, watering your garden, lighting up the rooms in the evening, getting hot water for the household, or recharging an innumerable array of devices, there is hardly anything that you can do without electricity. For home-owners, this huge energy consumption is synonymous with a shocking, heart-breaking, headache-inducing utility bills. And worse still, this rising energy expenditure can have a long-term impact on your personal finance. But, you should stop worrying, as not all is lost. There are numerous ways you can reduce both the carbon footprint of the household and the recurring energy costs. Many of them are simple, yet time-tested lifestyle hacks that have been followed for generations, and they do not call for major constructional upgrades or upfront expenses. However, if you are contemplating long-term cost savings, these small changes may not yield the results that are up to your satisfaction. Solar technologies, though slightly expensive at the initial stage, can help you save money in the long run while saving the environment, especially if you are living in one of the Sun Belt cities. Check out the following solar technologies. Implementing all or at least some of them may be your key to reducing your utility bills and carbon footprint to the lowest possible level:
1. Powering your home with solar energy
Does the term solar electricity sound complex to you? Well, a look into its mechanism will give you a better understanding of how it works. In order to power your home with solar energy, you will have to install Photovoltaic (PV) arrays on the rooftop. While solar arrays will collect sunlight, a generator will convert the sun’s light energy into electricity. There will also be an inverter, a component tasked with converting DC power (direct current) into AC power (alternating current). You will also require to install transfer switches and a few other safety devices.
2. Solar hot water system for all household requirements
The two major parts of a solar heater are the thermal collector and the storage tank. You can mount the latter either above or below the solar collector level. A circulating pump moves the heated water along with a heat transfer fluid between the tank and the collectors. In the southern cities, these heaters are commonly used to meet domestic hot water needs. This eco-friendly hot water system helps you cut down your gas and electricity consumption significantly.
3. Solar-powered swimming pool heater
Splashing around in the pool is undeniably one of the most exhilarating activities for both kids and adults. The delight can continue year-round when the pool water welcomes you into the world of lukewarm comfort, even during the fall. A solar blanket can keep your pool considerably warm throughout the day. If you are ready to go a bit more high-tech, invest in a solar pool heater – it utilizes roof-mounted heating panels to collect the sun’s heat, which is then circulated to the pool through a pump.
4. Heat your home with solar energy
Want to keep the interior of your home nicely warm? The passive space heating technology can let you do that in a cost-effective manner. These systems have two major components – hot water or air tubes that are mounted on the rooftop, and a pump. This system is a fine example of how stored energy can be put to use for space heating.
5. Ventilation with solar attic fan
All types of fans make great ventilation tools. They help in air circulation, subsequently keeping moisture and smell at bay. Besides using ceiling fans in our bedrooms, we use vent-fans in our kitchens and baths. They consume a lot of power, and as a result add to the electricity bill. Solar attic fans also promote air-movement, but without consuming huge amount of electricity. The system runs on top gear when there is a lot of sunshine, and you can install one just about anywhere in your home.
6. Solar energy for indoor and outdoor lighting
The solar power offers a cost-effective lighting solution for your home. However, not all light-bulbs are compatible with solar-powered lighting system. You need to use battery-connected LED bulbs. The battery uses the sun’s light energy to charge itself during the day, and uses the stored energy to operate when it’s dark. Solar power is also a great option when it comes to illuminating your backyard and walkways for security purposes. Use pole lights for better and brighter illumination.
7. Charging battery with solar
There are innumerable benefits of having a battery bank that charges through the day and is ready for use through the night hours. It will come handy in case there is any power outage during natural calamities or other turbulences. At other times, you can use it whenever you need to offset occasional surges in your electricity consumption. For example, during the summer months you can use the battery bank to run ceiling fans. This way, you will be able to maintain a soothing temperature in your room, but without having to consume a lot of electricity.
Thinking of home improvement? Go solar. While investing in solar panels in Tampa or any other sun-bathed city is especially beneficial, these panels can work literally anywhere. Even in Antarctica. Talk to a service provider to know how to maximize the benefits of solar panels or which products would best suit your power consumption needs. One of the biggest plus points of adopting solar solutions is that you start to see return on investment only in a few years time. So embrace solar, save money, and save the Earth too.