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  Lower Your Utility Bill with Solar

Choosing to install solar panels can be an excellent way to help you lower your monthly utility bills. If you’ve ever considered installing solar power one of the things that could be holding you back is the upfront costs. When you consider how quickly you can save with solar panels, the upfront costs may seem extremely justified. Here are some of the top ways that you can save money with solar power:

Cutting Your Utility Bill in Half

Even a small solar panel system will help you to cut your energy bill by 50% or more. If your home has solar panels, you can get access to credits from the utility company for the solar power that you are able to generate with the system. The power that you get from the sun is free once you install the solar panels and they will continue to work for 25+ years efficiently.

No Cost for Maintenance

You will be lowering your utility bill with solar while also making sure that you can continue to access quality power even with very little maintenance. With virtually no cost on maintenance, all of the fees associated with your system will be included with installation costs.

Locking in Your Cost for Power

The cost of energy is rising all the time but by installing a solar energy system you will be locking in your electricity costs at one set rate. You’ll be generating most of your own power and there’s no need to worry about what your electric company will charge you on a monthly basis. You’ll receive credits at the market rate from your electrical company, even as the cost of energy rises and you won’t have to worry about your extra costs because you’ve already paid for the power you generate through the system.

These are just a few of the top ways that you can lower your utility bill with solar. Consider installing this system today so that you can access the best in energy efficiency.

This post was written by Daniel Massaad, owner and expert solar technician at Energy Solutions Direct! ESD is one of the premier Tampa solar companies! Our licensed and certified contractors are masters of their craft; with years of experience servicing the great Tampa Bay area and beyond, the choice is simple. ESD excels at offering you the best in solar value!

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5 Reasons Why a Solar Power System Is Crucial for a California Homeowner

5 Reasons Why a Solar Power System Is Crucial for a California Homeowner

Home solar power systems are becoming increasingly popular with California residents recently. There are many reasons why getting residential solar power makes sense, especially for people who live in California.

California Climate

Although California is known as the Golden State because of its association with the discovery of gold in 1848, it could apply equally as well to how much sunshine the state gets. California solar energy companies are making use of an extremely plentiful natural resource – sunshine. California averages between 180 to 290 sunny days per year. California solar energy just makes sense because of the climate and weather patterns of the region.

Bill Reduction

Another reason why having a solar power system is crucial for California homeowners is to help reduce monthly energy costs. With the recession still in full swing, having a solar power system to help reduce your energy expense could make a huge financial difference with month to month budgeting. California solar energy companies have extensively researched the power savings possible by purchasing a solar power system for the home. They have found that the cost of the system is usually completely recouped in the fifth year of operating a home on solar power energy.

Protection against Inflation

In addition to reducing monthly bill costs, solar energy systems can also help to protect homeowners from the annual inflation of energy costs in the future. Once the solar energy systems initial investment has been recovered in savings, the money you no longer pay for electricity piles up in your bank account. Each year that passes increases the cumulative savings created by your home solar power system. Over time, utility costs will rise ever higher as traditional methods of acquiring power get more expensive. Having a solar energy system installed on a home will protect homeowners from the effects of inflation over time.

Eco-Friendly Living

The world is definitely starting to show the effects of the population living lives of consumption. Because of this, many people have chosen to live a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. Installing a residential solar power system is a great way to cut back on a homeowner’s environmental impact. Instead of using the planet’s natural resources such as coal or oil for power, a home solar power system uses the unlimited power of the sun. This source of power is also completely pollution free and offers homeowners the chance to live completely off the grid as they learn to be self-sufficient in their homes. Traditional sources of power are limited and will one day be extremely expensive or entirely unavailable.

Tax Credits

Another reason why California homeowners may choose solar power systems is because of the government’s tax incentives. Green technology such as solar is being encouraged by the government to help cut down on pollution levels as well as to help increase California’s supply of power. California solar energy systems installed will benefit homeowners with tax credits which can help to offset the initial costs of installing the system. In some cases, any additional power that is collected with solar panels can also be sold back to power companies which can help to offset the initial investment even further.

Green living is a very strong trend right now that is likely to grow even more as people awaken to the damage being done to the planet. Solar energy can help to prevent any further damage being done and offers homeowners a range of additional financial benefits as well.…

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How To Install Do It Yourself Solar Panels For Home

How To Install Do It Yourself Solar Panels For Home

Lots of people are ditching the power grid and taking advantage of natural solar power for their private consumption. At the beginning, solar energy was accessible to wealthy industrial and domestic consumers because of its high price. But nowadays technological innovation makes it’s cheap to normal domestic consumers too.

Average consumers are choosing the DIY solar energy panels to reduce their rising electricity expenditures. But, many people are unaware of main types of solar panels? How they can build their own solar panel? What are the benefits of solar panels? You will easily find answers of your all questions in this article.

Types of Solar Panels

The main types of DIY panels are as follows:

A� Mono Silicon Panels

Mono silicon panels are costly as compared to the other type of panels, but they are considered to be most efficient and effective panels for residential use. They are made of silicon and work proficiently in low light conditions.

A� Multi Silicon Panels

Multi silicon panels generate less electricity than the mono silicon panel. You can easily get these panels at low prices. Multi Silicon panels can be suggested for consumers who are price conscious.

A� Amorphous Panels

These are molten silicon coated panels and less efficient than other types. These are very popular among consumers because these are shadow protected panels. These panels are cheaper than above two mentioned panels.

Build DIY Solar Panels at Home

It has turned out to be much easier to develop a solar Panel at home. Solar cells can be found on the internet at cheap prices and can be bought in an offer of 72 cells with a diode that make sure unidirectional energy circulation. The complete deal with extra wire connections to connect can be obtained for about $100. The frame required to keep the solar panel is not difficult to create with plywood or you can easily buy it from any market at very affordable price of $40. If you create the entire panel buy your own self, you would easily save $350 to $500 comparing the manufacturing company’s cost.

The benefits of DIY Solar Panels:

DIY solar power panels can be installed at any place as long as you can find enough direct sunlight.

• It cuts down the electricity expenditures, giving free energy to your residence for a long time.

• DIY panel systems can be created with quite high quality solar cells that you can get online at affordable prices.

• You can gain tax credits for making use of eco-friendly energy

• It can raise the worth of your house.

• A homemade Do-it-yourself solar system requires only very fundamental expertise. It is normally a very fun and a pleasant activity as the endeavors show in the form of minimal energy bills.

• It can guard you against the rising energy prices.

• DIY solar power systems provide you with the pleasure of doing something in your amplitude to save the environment from fossil fuels and global warming. Leading you to autonomous and very well prepared in case of power shortages…

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Why I Love My Solar Power System

Why I Love My Solar Power System

It all began when I was living in Haiti in the early 1990’s. It was after a Coup that overthrew President Aristide that the US government imposed a trade embargo on Haiti blocking fuel supplies to the country amongst other things. The result was that they had an unprecedented energy crisis and we spent months without electricity. I went out and purchased 12 solar panels from a local merchant for US $330ea, I already had two 2000W inverters and 24 Deep Cycle Batteries. I installed half of this equipment in my house and the other half in my office downtown. We had maybe an hour or two of electricity every 4 to 5 days.

Well, I can tell you this much about the electricity supplied by my solar power system both in my house and in my office:

First, I unplugged the big 2-door refrigerator that I had and purchased a small energy-efficient freezer.

Second, I used a small gas-powered generator I had that I only ran for about 30 to 45 minutes a day just to pump up water from my underground 40,000 gal reservoir to a small 300 gal unit on the roof so I can take a shower by gravity. I must remind you that gasoline supplies were almost zero due to the embargo. The cost per gallon reached US$15 on the black market.

Third, I changed all the incandescent light bulbs to energy saver bulbs.

Forth, I changed my habits from watching TV for hours to just one hour a day, I turn the lights on only when needed, I made sure my batteries never ran dry of distilled water and that the cables and terminals were clean and tight. That’s all the maintenance the solar power system needs to run smoothly.

Understand that I was only living off 6 solar panels. For cooking, we used gas ovens. Propane gas was not part of the embargo for obvious reasons.

Now I don’t know how to call this if it’s not FREE ENERGY.

I must make another side note because I know you’re wondering why I had inverters, generators and batteries. Well it’s because in Haiti the power grid had always been unreliable, so everybody and every house has a generator, an inverter and a few batteries. In addition to that, I had my solar panels and this is where the difference was. After so many days without power and no gas for the generators, all batteries went dead and most of the city was in complete darkness, so I was one of the few that had lights on all night until I decided to go to sleep.

I had the same scenario in my downtown office where I needed to power three computers, some lights and a laser printer. Back then it was a 300W Apple Laserwriter, so I used a small generator to turn it on, do my printing and then turn it back off. The inverter was not connected to the power grid at all. The batteries were being charged by the 12v solar panels through a charge controller and then converted to 110VAC by the inverter so the computers were never off.

That’s a new example of FREE ENERGY.

Some people say that nothing is free. I think that only human made things are not free; everything else is. You don’t see animals in the forest pay for their food.

Anyway, I hope this article will open some people’s eyes on the tremendous possibilities of solar energy. Remember that the panels can be coupled to a windmill generator for more power, and the combination can be very efficient since the windmill can generate electricity day and night providing you live in a relatively windy area.…

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Why Solar Energy Is The Best Choice Among Green Energy Options

Why Solar Energy Is The Best Choice Among Green Energy Options

Many people are choosing to make green choices today because it is clearly understood that our continued use of fossil fuel is one of the major causes of unrest and environmental problems in the world today. Happily, there are a number of fairly affordable green energy choices available today. Government assistance can reduce even these reasonable costs tremendously. In this article we will discuss the reasons why solar energy is the best choice of all.

You can begin to go solar without spending a penny, and in fact, you will save money. Making passive solar choices, such as allowing the sun to pour in your windows in winter to help you heat and adding heavy thermal curtains in the summer to prevent overheating, can reduce your electric bill and is a sound way to take advantage of passive solar energy.

Inexpensive standalone solar technologies also allow you to make good use of the energy of the sun and save money. For example, you could choose a standalone outdoor solar lighting system to make your yard safer at night while saving you money on your electric bill.

There are lots of solar choices in yard and garden that you can take advantage of. For example, solar pool heaters and lights are very affordable and efficient. You can choose a whole pool system, or you can choose to power all of your pool equipment via a solar panel. You could also purchase a floating solar heater for your pool that would simply give your existing system an assist. This sort of heater can also be used for garden ponds if the type of fish you keep cannot tolerate the winter temperatures in your area.

If you are planning a new home, you can make tremendous use of passive solar power. Try to find an architect who knows how to make the most use of energy efficient materials and window placement to help you heat and cool your home with the very least possible use of fossil fuels. Even though this type of construction is a bit more expensive at the outset, the amount of money you save in the long run will make your investment well worth it. Be certain to research any grant, rebate or other assistance programs that may be available from your city, county, state or federal government.

Solar energy for an off the grid home, cabin or retreat is a truly wise choice. By not having to run electrical wiring to your out of the way place, you will save a great deal of money and you will be truly energy independent. When choosing the site for your new home or getaway, look for property that has lots of good southern exposure to make the best use of your solar energy system.

When you choose to go solar, you are making a smart choice indeed. You’ll save money from the moment the sun hits your panels, and you’ll keep saving for the foreseeable future. A solar energy system usually continues to work effectively and efficiently for 25-30 years with little or no maintenance. Follow the ideas presented here to make an easy and affordable transition to solar energy.…

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Time to Revisit Solar Power and Discover the New Innovative Designs

Time to Revisit Solar Power and Discover the New Innovative Designs

Solar power has just come of age and everyone needs to take another look. The history of solar power is much longer than many people would expect. The solar cell, or photovoltaic cell, was created in the 1880s by Charles Fritts. However, we had to wait another fifty years for the next step taken by a German, Dr Buno Lange. Development progressed further in the 1940s by Russel Ohl and then in 1954 this work all culminated in a development that lead to where we are today. In 1954 Gerald Pearson, Calvin Fuller and Daryl Chapin created the first silicon solar cell. This cell created up to 6 times the electricity of Dr Langes cell back in 1931.

So why should we look to solar power now? Solar power was originally inefficient, and then it was expensive, now we live in a time when, in certain fields, it is priced competitively.

Living in a house with a solar array may still be out of the price range of many people, but if you have outside space then you probably use out side lights. This is a perfect place to start when considering solar power. You don’t have to take anything down or change current wiring, there are amazing, free-standing, portable solar lantern available at very reasonable prices. These lanterns are not only a great way to light your meals, but they can also be taken camping or hung around your porch for holiday and parties. They are much more versatile than the traditional electric lanterns as there are no cables and you don’t have to worry about the batteries needing changing.

This is why solar energy has come of age, it grown to a point that it is the better designed, cheaper and more efficient option.

The design ideas and developments are not limited to lanterns, there are very few people in the developed world who don’t have a cell phone. The whole point of these phones is to be contactable at all times, but as the phones have got more complicated and demanded more of their batteries, the batteries have to be charged more often With a solar charging cell cover you can charge your phone while you are out and about, try doing that with a cable and traditional electricity source!

For the first time in the history of solar power it can offer us something which is useful, environmentally friendly and financially viable. Now solar power just needs to over come its reputation of being over priced and impractical.…

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Applying For Solar Panel Incentives

Applying For Solar Panel Incentives

Once you decide to install solar energy system, either you or your solar installer will need to contact the California Solar Incentive program administrator. You will have to apply for a solar incentive and you’ll have to arrange for your system to be connected to your local utility company.

You will be given an application to fill out. Once the application is completed funds will be reserved based on the size of your system. You can also apply online using Powerclerk.

After your application is approved, you will receive a written notice that will confirm the dollar amount of your reservation. You will also receive an expiration date for installing your system. This is usually 12 months after you’ve been approved.

The incentive payments are usually disbursed in one of two ways;

EPBB- Expected Performance Based Buydown. The applicant will receive the entire amount at the time of installment.

PBI- Performance Based Incentive- The applicant will receive a portion of the amount every month for five years.

As of January 1, 2010, only systems that are smaller than 30 kW will be eligible for the EPBB payment. Any systems that are eligible for the EPBB can opt to take the PBI instead.

Both payment plans are intended to be equal financially. This means that the payment disbursed to an EPBB applicant will be the same after accounting for the time-value as the monthly payments given to a PBI applicant.

In order to create a self sustaining market for solar energy systems, without government subsidies, the incentive payments will decline as the market grows. This means the incentive levels decline as more and more people apply for the program.

If you have a system that is smaller then 50kW, you can calculate how much your up front incentive will be by using the California Solar Initiative EPBB Calculator.…

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Solar Energy Cost

Solar Energy Cost

Owning your electricity is a great way to cut off the monthly expenses for your household. By using natural energy source, like solar energy perhaps, you do not need to worry about the high rates you see printed on your electric bills. What if we run out of oil? We all know that oil is our primary source of electricity?

By using an alternative, natural source of power, we are not only helping the environment through the reduction of pollution, but we will also be able to help ourselves from having to pay dreadful rates. Today, the solar energy costs a little high. However, you will be able to realize soon that the high cost is only spent during the start up process. Although the prices of solar panels are no joke, the benefits that you will get after installing one in your homes are truly worth laughing for.

A�If you have already heard of solar energy like ten years ago, you might also have found out that the cost of the energy generators before cost almost ten times their costs now. The rapid breakthrough of technology has produced inventions and machines that have made the cost of solar energy generating materials go down the price ladder with a fast whoosh. Today, we are enjoying the benefits of the inventions being made. With the high – end machines that we have now, the creation of solar panels have become so easy; and with the process turning into something that is already so easy, more and more industries are trying to adapt it. The increasing number of producers has made the cost to decrease. A�With more and more people adapting the method of getting their power needs from solar energy, we can expect that the prices of solar panel materials will continue to decrease extensively.

The bigger the solar panels and solar arrays that you will build, the more electricity you will be able to produce. If the power that your panels produce exceeds the energy needs of your household, you will also be able to earn from that. Utility companies will be more than happy to purchase your extra electricity. So, how does that sound now? With solar energy, you will not only be able to save up and cut off a great part of your monthly bills, you will also be able to earn from the extra power that you produce.

The government will also pay you for installing solar panels to generate solar power. Yes, indeed. All you have to do is inform the government that you will be using solar power for your homes, and they will process a rebate for you. They will give you as much as 30% of the cost of the installation depending on your usual electricity usage. The government is really serious with its campaign for generating renewable, clean and cheap energy source because they are giving the people rebate when they install on in their homes. So, not only have you saved money by using solar energy, you also earn from it. The start – up cost will, indeed, pay off in the end.…

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Home Renewable Energy: What You Should Know

Home Renewable Energy: What You Should Know

The world today is heavily dependent on oil and fossil fuel. This is a very disturbing situation because the growing demand for oil is slowly overtaking the world supply. It won’t be long before the supply of non-renewable fossil fuel dries up. With this in mind plus the ever-increasing cost of oil, it’s not surprising that many people are now thinking of building a home renewable energy system.

Types of Renewable Energy

Renewable energy sources can be found around us in abundant supply. And because these sources are renewable, we can use them without worrying that the supply will run out.

• Solar energy. We can get energy from the sun everyday. Solar energy can be used for heating and can be converted to electricity to power homes, schools and businesses.

• Wind energy. A windmill or wind turbine can harness energy from the wind and convert it to electricity.

• Hydropower. Energy from flowing water can turn a turbine. The energy that turns the turbine is converted into electricity.

• Biomass. Biomass or bio-fuel comes from plants. It can be used as transportation fuel or converted to electricity.

• Geothermal. Heat energy from under the earth can be used for electricity, heating and cooling.

Not all of these energy sources are suitable for home renewable energy systems. The most viable options are solar energy, wind energy and biomass.

Benefits of Home Renewable Energy

• Clean and eco-friendly

• Small carbon footprint

• Renewable and can be replenished

• You may qualify for tax breaks and incentive plans

• Can translate to savings in home energy costs

Things to Think About

Installing a renewable energy system at home can entail a big investment. Find out what type of alternative energy source is appropriate for your home. Your choice will depend on certain conditions.

If you live in an area with strong winds averaging 10 miles per hour, a windmill is a good option for your energy source. On the other hand, solar energy may be a good choice if you live in an area where you get plenty of sunlight. And if you live on a farm, biomass or bio-fuel may be a viable option.

The primary drawback of home renewable energy generation is the prohibitive cost of alternative energy technology. For instance, it can cost up to $20,000 to install a solar cell system or a wind turbine. If making renewable power can be made more affordable, people will readily install alternative energy technology and help save the environment even as they reduce their utility bills.…

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Basics of Solar Panels For Home Use

Basics of Solar Panels For Home Use

Going green with solar panel is the best thing you can do to cut off your electricity bills. You can use the latest technology to install solar panels for home use. With the increasing rates of electricity the first thing that hits the mind is to reduce the usage of electricity and for this there in no efficient way than using solar energy. Many people think that fixing of solar panels will cost them huge amount and they simply hesitate to take initiative. But the rates of ready made panels are quite affordable and they are simply ready to install. The kit also includes the instruction manual that guides you throughout the installation process.

Solar panels are the array of photovoltaic cells that utilize the energy that is emitted by the sun and converts it into electrical energy. You can use this energy to operate your domestic electrical appliances. Many people rush towards homemade panels due to expensive rates of ready made panels as they find it easy to afford.

Before installing the solar panels for your home use it is necessary that you must know the basics for the installation. You need to research for the best DIY kit that will guide you in perfect manner. Some panels are designed in such a way that they can be fixed on any type of roof tops. These panels draw the energy from the sun and enable the energy to be used for certain uses at domestic level such as heating the rooms, boiling water etc.

They do not contain any moving or mobile parts so the solar panels for home use can be considered with complete reliability as they are safe and free from any type of accident. The size of solar array that is mounted on the roof depends on the number of panels fixed and the amount of electricity required by your home. The company provides a complete assistance and guides throughout the electricity production that will give you the best deal.

Solar energy is the best way to help your economical and environmental status. It can be defined as the greenest energy source that can help for reduction of global warming. This planet can be saved when there is more usage of solar energy rather than fossil fuels with the solar panels for home use. They give a very low maintenance cost and produce the clean and hygienic energy for the betterment of the family as well as society. The incentives paid for the installation the panel for your home give you the additional income. More earning can be done with extra energy production for selling purpose.

When various tasks are performed with the help of solar energy that were previously done by electrical energy then there is surely an addition to the monthly savings. This installation can be done with some cheaper and less complicated material such as copper, plastic, aluminum and even stainless steel. There is less wastage of energy in getting transferred as it is consumed at the place where it is produced. There is the most appropriate reason for going green, that there is no by-product and it is very healthy way to produce energy with the solar panels.…