Everyone is looking for ways to save money, and producing your own energy with solar power can really help you do so. However, solar energy is a complicated subject, and it can be hard to know how to get started. The following advice will get you started on the right foot.
The amount of energy you can produce using solar power greatly varies depending on how many panels you have, as well as their efficiency. You should do the math to figure out how many panels will be needed. It may be more cost effective to purchase more efficient panels.
If you really want to see how your solar panels are working, keep a diary of the day to day energy output. Make a note if you are recording data on a particularly dark or shady day. Having this information can help you to understand how your panels work, and this can help you to optimize their performance.
In the event you only wish to use solar energy in part, you should examine some of the smaller scale applications available. There are two ways to do this. You could attach solar panels to your windows and use these to recharge smaller electronics. Another option is to look for solar-powered camping gear like lanterns and stoves. These products will help you save a little but the savings will add up quickly.
Your home or business should receive at least five hours of direct sunlight per day to get the most from solar energy. Obviously more sun is better when it comes to solar panels, however if you get less than this solar energy can still be a viable option. If you are in an area where energy bills are sky high, solar might still save you money even if you don’t have the optimal sun exposure.
Sun tracking panels are the most efficient available. These systems can track the sun for optimum efficiency. The cost is relatively steep compared to a fixed option, but the benefits more than outweigh the costs.
You should know the difference between off-grid solar energy and on-grid solar energy in order to figure out which is best for you. On-grid energy requires the use of the state’s electricity grid. On the other hand, off-grid energy means the home or business uses its own solar-hybrid or solar source.
Look into the warranties of the solar panels you are considering. A quality solar panel should have a warranty for twenty years or more. If you don’t get that with the panels you are considering, then move in a different direction. It may cost a little more, but it’ll be worth it for the peace of mind.
Consider installing more solar panels than your home will ever need. If you do this you will be doing two good things. First, you will earn money on any energy created that your home does not use. Second, you will be reducing the amount of fossil fuels burned to power the homes of your neighbors.
When purchasing a solar energy system, make sure that you read the manufacturer’s warranty carefully. This is a very expensive item, and you want to know that you will be able to get a replacement in the event something happens to it. You should purchase an extended warranty if the one that is offered is very limited.
Consider complementing your solar panels with other forms of energy production. Aside from night, your solar panels are least productive when it is cloudy, which usually means winds, rain or both. Put in some small wind turbines on your roof and micro-hydroelectric generators at ends of gutters for some power production when solar panels are not up and running.
Many companies are now allowing consumers to lease solar energy products. This is perfect if you are unsure if you are a good candidate for solar energy or if you do not have the financial means to purchase a solar energy system. Ask your local electric company for suggestions of companies who lease solar energy products.
Think about heating your hot tub or pool water with solar energy. These devices are some of the most energy consuming things that people have in their homes these days. If you use solar energy instead of standard energy to power these you could greatly reduce your carbon footprint and save money in the end.
You need to find an efficient way to finance your solar panels. Most homeowners borrow some money from their financial institution so they can cover the initial costs and then pay this money back in small monthly payments. You can even set the monthly payments so they correspond to your usual energy bills in order to keep a balanced budget.
The best time to incorporate solar power into the design of a home or building is in the initial construction. Windows are best facing south to let maximum sunlight (hence greenhouse heat) in during the winter. Likewise, avoid windows facing directly into the summertime sun to keep things cooler, so less power is needed for fans or air conditioning. The maximum roof space, however, should always get sunlight exposure.
Once you know a little more about solar energy, you will realize how much money you can save by installing solar panels. Doing so does not have to be a complicated or overly expensive process. Just use the advice you have read here to get started using solar power right away.