Harnessing the winter sun could be the smartest and most efficient way to save money on your heating and electricity bill.
Environmentalists are worried about the alarming rate at which humans are abusing non-renewable sources of energy. A day might come not very far that energy might become a scarce commodity. Currently, there is an increased awareness amongst humans to preserve the environment, conserve energy and reduce energy costs. Everyone loves an energy efficient home that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and need for non-renewable resources?
Using the power of the sun or solar power to energize your house is one of the cleanest and best sources of power. Sun is a powerful source of energy. Without it life would not exist on this planet. It is free, generally available, clean and renewable form of energy.
Solar energy deals with conversion of the sunlight energy into our day-to-day required energy. Solar panels installed on rooftops assist you in producing your own electricity thereby, reducing energy costs. It is a bit costly though but proves as a fantastic investment.
There are three ways to use solar energy to energy of everyday use Photovoltaic processes, Solar heating and cooling, Concentrating solar power
1. Photovoltaic Processes (PV)
- Photovoltaic processes happen with PV devices, which take the sunlight and make it into electricity.
- PV processes use semi-conductors that produce electrons when hit with sunlight. These electrons are attracted towards one side generate an electric current.
- Energy generated will be lower or even stop under cloudy conditions.
2. Solar Heating and Cooling (SHC)
- Solar heating and cooling (SHC) is all about conversion from sunlight energy to thermal energy, that from sunlight to electricity to power heaters or coolers
- Used in residential and commercial buildings
- It reduces use of other harmful gases and non-renewable fuels.
3. Concentrating Solar Power (CSP)
- CSP is a new technology that concentrates the sunlight energy different types of energies.
- The sun’s energy energizes the steam engines and turbines to produce and store the electricity.
Why installing a Solar Panel makes sense?
As mentioned earlier, a solar panel captures free and universally available sunlight and transforms it to energy. This produced energy reduces electric bills and utilizes fewer natural resources.
Solar energy is becoming increasingly popular due to following reasons:
- The rates for solar panels have reduced by a mammoth 60% huge significantly between 2011 and 2014 (from around $1.31 a watt in 2011 to around $0.50 a watt in 2014).
- Local and Government subsidies further reduce the solar panel prices (approx. 30%)
- A variety of lease financing options saves even more money
At times, you could find that your entire electricity bill has become zero by using solar power while at times you will find that your electricity bill has reduced from 10 to 50%.
Do not worry if you are not residing in an area that does not have adequate sunshine. It appears that in fact, solar panels work better in colder regions. Do not worry if the weather is very cloudy as these panels acquire sunlight scattered by humidity or clouds.
Solar Energy Advantages
Installing Solar Panels has number of advantages such as:
- It trims down electricity bills
- Sustainable and renewable
- Power Remote Areas
- Minimum Maintenance
- Zero Pollution
- Spare Electricity
- it creates jobs
Solar Energy Disadvantages
Installing Solar Panels has a few disadvantages such as:
- Preliminary Investment
- Daytime availability
- Ineffective during rains or cloudy weather
- Bulky Setup
- Costly Storage
We have seen that installing solar panels has advantages as well as disadvantages. However, looking at the energy is a holistic manner and its significance in creating a sustainable resource of power, there is no doubt that solar is the way forward. Technologies will improve, rates will further come down, pollution will be reduced and man will energize his life with the power of the sun.
I did my bit for Mother Earth by installing solar in my house.