How to Choose the Best Solar Energy System

With the recent advances in technology in recent years, being able to produce viable and clean energy to be used to power your home is now a reality. Alternative sources of power and energy will not only help you avoid burning fossil fuel to help provide electricity for your home, but will also help you save a considerable amount of money on the cost of your utility. One of those alternative energy sources is solar energy.

There are actually a number of different solar energy systems that are available in the market today. Since solar energy has become more common and more viable in the recent years, developers have begun to develop different solar energy systems that you can choose from, depending on your needs and limitations. Choosing a solar energy system that would fit best for your home is not necessarily an easy thing to do, which is why it is important that you learn how to choose the best one in order to get the right type of solar energy system for your home. Here are a couple of hints.

Know Your Solar Energy System

Before anything else, the very first thing that you must do is you must make sure that you know what different solar energy systems there are that you can choose from. Basically, there are two different types of solar energy systems, and those are the photovoltaic (PV) panels and solar thermal systems.

Photovoltaic Panels
Photovoltaic panels are solar energy panels that convert solar energy and turn them into electricity that you can use to power up most of your appliances and household lighting, and should only be used for those particular uses. Unfortunatley, among the solar energy systems that are in the market, photovoltaic panels are considered to be one of the more expensive ones, if not the most expensive in the solar energy market today.

Solar Thermal Systems

Solar thermal systems, on the other hand, simply generate heat, and are well-suited for boilers, furnaces and water heaters, as this type of system allows you to make heat using direct solar energy at a much lower cost as compared to using conventional energy and electricity. However, if you want to retrofit your home with one of these solar thermal systems, you need to sacrifice a little bit of space in your home. The good thing about using this type of solar energy system though is that you will save up to 80% of your total energy cost per year.

Calculate Your Energy Cost

Once you have a much better understanding and grasp of what solar energy systems are out there, and how they work, you simply need to learn how to calculate the cost of your energy consumption. This will actually help you determine which type of solar energy system you should choose from the two. When calculating the cost of your energy consumption, you need to create a list of all the things that might need energy and electricity. Include appliances, lighting, water heating, space heating, space cooling and air conditioning. If you can, try and figure out first if there are ways that you can reduce your electricity and energy consumption without having to resort to retrofitting your home with solar energy system.

Solar Panel For Shed

Step 1: Check the Location and Equipment

Use a Solar Pathfinder to determine if enough sunlight is available on the shed roof throughout the day. In this case, sufficient direct light reaches the solar panel between 11 a.m. and nightfall to provide the energy needed to operate typical workshop shed tools. Before wiring the solar panel, check the wiring diagram that comes with it for instructions specific to the unit.

use solar pathfinder to determine solar light

Step 2: Wire the Panel

Begin by connecting the wiring from the solar panel to the junction box. Add a watertight connector to the incoming end of the junction box and protect it from moisture. Strip the wires and insert the cable into the junction box. Connect the red wire to the positive connection and the black wire to the negative connection at the terminal posts. Use a screwdriver to tighten.

red wire goes to positive and black to negative

Step 3: Attach the Mounting Hardware to the Panel

Attach the roof mounts supplied with the solar kit to the back of the solar panel. Bolt the support rails horizontally across the bottom of the unit (Image 1). Then bolt the support legs to the rails (Image 2).

Step 4: Position and Install the Panel on the Roof

With the mounting hardware in place, position the solar panel on the roof (Image 1). Temporarily attach the supplied support “feet” to the bottom of the legs and mark their mounting hole locations on the roof. After marking the holes, remove the feet. Drill holes (Image 2) for 2″ screws. If the roof is plywood, add wood blocking inside to provide solid attachment for the screws. Apply butyl adhesive to the bottom of the detached mounting feet and use 2” screws to attach the feet to the roof. Position the panel and legs atop the feet and attach using the supplied hardware.

Step 5: Complete the Wiring from the Panel

Route the wire from the solar panel across the roof, and position it under the overhang. Drill a 1/2” hole through the wall into the building interior just below this point. Pass the wire through the hole into the interior. Secure the wire with staples and seal the entry hole with silicone caulk.

wire from solar panel threads through hole in roof

Step 6: Install the Electrical Panel

Use 2″ lag screws to secure the electrical utility box to the interior wall. The utility box houses the charge controller that manages the power between the solar panel, battery and load. It also houses the battery. Position the battery inside the utility box and insert the cable from the solar panel into the utility box. Use a watertight electric connector to seal the box from moisture.

Step 7: Attach the Panel Wiring

Attach the wires to the terminal strip of the charge controller inside the utility box. Connect the red wire to the terminal marked positive and the black wire to the negative terminal. When the connection is completed and the power is on, a light on the controller will indicate when power is being generated by the solar panel (Image 1). Next, install the heavy-duty fuse (Image 2) inside the utility box. The fuse will act as an interrupt between the battery and the solar inverter.

Step 8: Connect the Battery

Connect the battery to the fuse using heavy-duty No. 1 welding cable. Connect one end of the cable to the positive lug on the battery. Run another piece of welding cable from the fuse to the inverter and a third cable from the negative lug of the battery to the inverter. Run the wires from the terminal strip of the charge controller to the battery. Be sure to match the red wire to the positive terminal and the black wire to the negative terminal.

Step 9: Wire the Inverter

With the inverter turned off, connect two heavy-duty cables from the utility box to the back of the unit, which includes two receptacle outlets. Add a protective boot to prevent an electrical bridge from forming (which could cause a shock). Connect the positive and negative wires to the respective terminals, then turn on the inverter to check that power is flowing.

Step 10: Wire the Interior Fixtures

Attach the lighting fixture to the shed ceiling. Mount the electrical junction box that will house the timer switch near the door. Route 14-gauge wires from the fixture to the junction box. Clamp the wires to the box, strip about 3/4” from the black and white wires, and attach them to the timer switch as indicated on the label. Attach the bare ground wire to the green ground screw on the switch. Route 14-gauge wires from the charge controller to the overhead light fixture. At the controller, connect the red wire to the positive terminal, and the black wire to the negative terminal. At the fixture, connect the wires (black to black and white to white) to the wires from the timer switch. Secure these wire connections with wire nuts. Twist the bare ground wires together and attach them to the metal fixture. Before testing the lights and outlet power, double-check all connections.


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Environmental Science: Renewable Energy Sources

The first episode of 10 or Less, an educational podcast series where I take a boring long chapter from a textbook and turn it into a video thats 10 minute…

Tips On How You Can Get The Most Out Of Green Energy

It’s important to take care of our planet, so we need to utilize green energy as much as possible. There are many forms of methods you can use to be environmentally friendly. How do you use green energy? Reading this article will help your learn more.

When creating an outdoor light set up for a garden path or patio, consider using solar-powered lamps. These lamps are inexpensive and do not require any kind of power sources other than exposure to the sun. This will save a lot of energy! It also means that you avoid having to go outside to hook up lights.

TIP! Keep your windows shaded when trying to conserve energy. You can do this by putting up blinds or curtains.

Solar water heaters use the sun’s heat water rather than using natural gas or electricity for heat. You may get tax deductions for using energy efficient upgrades.

Mp3 Players

TIP! There are grants that can help you invest in green energy. Ask your local authorities what kinds of programs are available in your area.

Be a better consumer of energy, and unplug electric chargers for all devices that don’t need immediate charging.Chargers for devices like phones, mp3 players, mp3 players and other electronic devices use power when they’re plugged in, even if they aren’t charging your device.

Warm-air registers can also have filters installed on them.This will help keep debris from getting into heating ducts.

TIP! Use cold water for laundry, whenever you can. The majority of energy use from washing clothes is in the heating of the water.

Use window treatments to shade the inside of your home when you’re not at home. This cools the house cool and lowers energy use. Try to cover the windows using coverings like roman shades, such as shades or darker, and dark curtains.

When you plan a solar system for your home, calculate the potential energy generation of the system using hours of sunshine in the winter. This prevents any unanticipated effects from a winter months, while leaving you safely ahead of your needs during the summer.

TIP! Use electric heating sparingly in the winter. Wrap up your family in warmer clothes and make use of your fireplace for added warmth.

Take time to properly inspect your refrigerator. Since the fridge consumes lots of energy, it is crucial you keep it in perfect working order. Make dusting the coils periodically. Make sure the door seal is clean and tight.

Use a tankless water heater instead of one that uses a tank style heater. Tankless versions still need electricity or gas to heat water, but they only heat the water you actually need. Tankless heaters can supply the entire house or a single faucet with hot water.

TIP! An easy way to cut energy costs and go green is to dress warm. You will feel 2 degrees warmer with a light sweater, and 4 degrees warmer with a heavy one.

Learn about the difference between passive and active solar power.Passive systems simply use the simple sun to generate thermal energy to heat your house or water.

Use a laptop instead of a desktop computer to save electricity and enhance your mobility. Laptops use about 75% less electricity than desktops, and is ideal for those that use their computer for surfing the Internet or word processing. The laptop has the added benefit of being portable, so it can be taken anywhere!

TIP! Choose a laptop instead of a desktop PC to save energy. Making this switch can reduce your power consumption by up to 75%.

This generation must make the change to green energy. Several power sources affect the environment less harshly and minimize detrimental effects. Becoming a green person has become easier than ever, and if you put this information to use, you will be green in no time.

Tips And Hints On Converting Your Business To Green Energy

There is a wealth of green energy information out there, so it can be hard to find what you need easily.

Solar water heaters use the sun’s heat water rather than using natural gas or electricity for heat. You may be eligible for tax deductions to offset the expense of installing some of this technology.

TIP! Use a solar water heater to keep your pools, tubs and plumbing full of piping hot, but cheap, water. Using natural gas and electricity is certainly the norm, but it’s not very energy efficient.

Wear natural fabrics in the summertime instead of running your air conditioner. Wear lighter colors since warmer ones can make you warm and you will be likelier to turn on the air conditioner.

Be socially responsible, and cut your home energy usage by unplugging your electronic chargers when they are not in use. Chargers for devices like phones, laptops, mp3 players and other electronic devices use power when they’re plugged in, regardless of whether you are actually charging the device.

TIP! If you are trying to conserve energy in the summer, be sure to keep your shades drawn to block out the sun. Installing blinds and curtains will also help.

Find out more about the various energy solutions in your local community. Check to see how much it would cost to run your home with these other utilities, taking into consideration any recent legislation regarding energy costs. You might be able to save money by switching to well water or another may provide a reduction in energy use and cost.

A good way to conserve energy is to not use your dishwasher when you have a full load ready to go.Don’t run it when there are only a few things. You may be shocked to learn the number of items that you can be loaded into a dishwasher.

TIP! Make your home more energy efficient by unplugging your unused electronic devices. They may not be currently in use, but items such as cell phone chargers, laptops and mp3 players draw energy when left plugged in.

Turn off appliances if you aren’t using them. When an area of the home is not being used, like the lights, computer or T.V. A power strip is an easy way to turn off multiple appliances at once, and it prevents passive electrical use due to standby modes.

Don’t run the dishwasher if it is less than totally full. It will use the same amounts of electricity and water even if one dish is in it.When you do operate your dishwasher, be sure to make use of the energy-saving feature, which allows the air-drying of your dishes.

TIP! As you plan for a solar energy array, use winter time sunshine hours to calculate from. This will guarantee that you will have energy no matter what the weather brings, and it will result in a surplus during the summer.

Tips Listed

While wading through the sea of ideas online isn’t fun, getting started with the tips listed here will be. The tips listed above are easy to understand, accurate, and best of all, they can help save the planet and while saving you some serious money. Both your family and the planet will benefit.

TIP! If you dress warmer, you will help cut energy costs, which helps you to go green. You can wear a heavy sweater instead of a light one to give yourself more warmth when you’re at home.

Useful Tips For Using Solar Energy In Your Home And Business

People are moving away from fossil fuels for energy. Solar energy is popular as a huge role in the foreseeable future. The following article will give you with useful information and helpful tips.

The amount of energy production is dependent on two things – the number of solar panels you have and their efficiency.You may have to spend some simple calculations to determine the right number of panels. It might be more interesting to invest in the highest performance panels.

TIP! In order to maximize the potential from your solar panels, try and find a system that doesn’t directly rely on the schedule of the sun. Many modern solar panels will allow you to store some energy so that you can use it at any time.

The density of your solar panels you purchase will determine how efficient they are. Panels that have higher densities tend to cost more, but they also cost more.Compare density of different panels before you decide which to buy.

To maximize the effectiveness of your solar panels, check out the systems that do not rely fully on the sun’s schedule. This is very useful if you use most of your power in the evenings.

Solar Power

TIP! Do not think that taking advantage of solar energy requires you to completely tear off the roof. At a minimum, you can replace all exterior sources of illumination with solar powered lamps and light sources.

If you do not want to go all out when using solar power, check out smaller-scale solar power applications. There are two ways you can achieve this. You could attach solar panels that can be mounted on or in a window for recharging portable electronic items. Another option is to look for solar-powered camping accessories that are powered by solar energy. Every tiny thing you do will make your utility bill.

You should consider investing in solar energy if you are interested in long-term investments. Solar panels require an initial investment and a while before they pay for themselves. You need to make sure your financial situation is stable before you invest in solar energy only if you’re settling down.

Don’t give in to a salesman sell you are seeking the best in solar energy systems. You must spend sufficient time gathering information if you are to make the best decision for your needs. Buying on the spot from a high pressure salesperson may result in making the wrong choice and wasting your decision.

TIP! Even if your area is cloudy and cold, you can still use solar energy. You can still harness the power of the sun, even in cooler climates, as long as you can get adequate sunlight.

Investing in a solar energy system will help you save money on your energy bills as electricity prices keep increasing. There’s no need to wait for the rest of the world to catch on! Find out what is available now, and find out how cost-efficient it can be and how good for the environment it is.

All You Have Ever Wanted To Learn About Solar Energy

Solar energy is becoming a popular for both homeowners and businesses. Why aren’t you started using solar energy? If you simply don’t possess enough knowledge to correctly utilize solar energy, this piece is for you. Continue reading this article to gain a better understanding of solar energy.

Your solar power system will keep functioning as long as you maintain it regularly. If you need help cleaning and inspecting, hire help to get the job done right.

If you decide to lease your solar energy unit instead of buying it, be sure the contract you sign allows you to transfer the lease.

Solar Panels

You should consider investing in solar panels if you don’t mind the investment. Solar panels are expensive and will take some time for them to be paid off and saving you money. You need to make sure your financial situation is stable before you invest in solar energy only if you’re settling down.

TIP! To get the most from solar panels in your home or business, go for installations that use technology not directly reliant on the sun’s schedule. Newer systems can store energy from the sun while it is up, and then let you use that energy later.

You have to think about whether or not solar energy is a good decision for your house. You need to consider a decision. Solar energy is a must-have for those that live in remote areas where there is no available electrical grid to hook into. It is also a great option if you’re able to pay upfront in order to realize savings later.

There may be grant or rebate options open to you that can help offset the initial costs involved with solar installation costs. It can be expensive to install and run your solar energy system, but there are ways to make it a bit cheaper. Look for state and federal grants that will reward your renewable energy sources. This can make things cost quite a lot more affordable. You might have the ability to take an expense deduction at tax deduction.

Do some serious calculations before you invest in any sort of solar panel system. Depending on your location, solar panels may be too costly when you consider the overhead costs mixed with the potential output.

Solar Energy

As you can see, solar energy has all kinds of advantages over other types of energy. You should now be more informed on how you can make use of solar energy. Use everything you’ve learned, and see how solar energy can help you!

Use The Sun: The Real Superpower Available

People are moving away from fossil fuels to power their homes and lives. Solar energy is popular as a huge role in the foreseeable future. This article can help you learn more about solar power and helpful information.

The efficiency of your solar panels you purchase will determine how efficient they are. Panels that have higher densities tend to cost more, but they also cost more.Be sure and compare densities of several different panels before choosing a solar panel.

TIP! There are two types of photo-voltaic panels. Poly-crystalline panels tend to be cheaper but they are not as efficient than mono-crystalline solar panels.

Your solar power system will function correctly if you maintain them. You can hire a professional that can do these things for you, but you save more if you do it on your own.

You will have to find a way to keep the energy you produce with your system produces. A good battery is something that you should look into to facilitate proper storage.

If you are thinking about leasing solar panels, choose a lease that can be transferred in case you decide to move.

Solar Energy

You need to think about whether or not solar energy is a good choice for your home. There are a couple factors to consider. Solar energy can be a good option for those that live in remote locations that are not connected to utility grids.It may also a good choice if you don’t mind paying more upfront money to reduce the environmental impact of your energy.

Don’t let a high pressure sales pitch when you anything. You need time gathering information if you are to make a good choice. Buying immediately from any high pressure is not good concerning the wrong decision and importance of your hard earned money.

TIP! Some solar panels are not adjustable but you will get better results if you invest in a mount that allows you to change the angle and orientation of your panels. The ideal angle of your panels will change throughout the day and from one season to the next.

Be certain the solar panels so that they are installed in the most advantageous way for sun exposure year long. If you don’t know where to place them, you may want to look at the sun’s path sun in your area and think about the changes that happen every season.

In the future, energy is likely to become both cheaper and cleaner. Why should you wait until this power becomes standard? Explore your options. Find out how much you can save as you reduce your environmental impact.

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Green Energy Tips And Techniques For Your Home

What will green energy help you incorporate it into your life? What are some things that you can help?Keep reading to learn valuable advice about how you can help the environment and lower your part.

When creating an outdoor light set up for a garden path or patio, think about getting lamps that are solar powered. These lamps are inexpensive and don’t require any kind of power source other than exposure to the sun. This saves a lot of energy. It will also save you avoid having to go outside and wire the outdoor lights to your home.

TIP! Shade your windows from the sun to prevent energy usage. Another suggestion for window treatments is installing curtains or blinds.

Solar water heaters use the sun’s heat water resulting in energy savings. You may get tax deductions for using energy efficient upgrades.

Wash clothes in cold water whenever possible. Almost 90% of energy consumed by washing machines is used for doing laundry is due to heating the water. If your laundry detergent is a high quality brand, cold water is effective.

TIP! Make your home more energy efficient by unplugging your unused electronic devices. Chargers for laptops, mp3 players, cell phones and other devices use power when they’re plugged in.

Many heating systems can use without needing modifications or extra parts.

Consider switching to solar-powered water heaters to make your home. If your location does not get too cold, you can use a system that circulates water through the solar heater before it gets pumped into your home. However, consider that you may still need a traditional heater if you will be using a great deal of hot water, or if the sun does not come out.

TIP! Do you have a farm? If you have a lot of land, energy companies will pay you for the right to set up a wind turbine on it. The energy generated can benefit your entire area without taking up much room.

Turn things off when not using them. When you leave an area take the time to turn off lights, televisions, televisions, and most importantly, and other electrical items you are not going to be using. A power strip should be used for electronics and can be easily turned off when not needed, and it prevents passive electrical use due to standby modes.

Don’t run the dishwasher if it is less than totally full. It will use the same amounts of electricity and water even if one dish is in it. When you do operate your dishwasher, be sure to make use of the energy-saving feature, which allows the air-drying of your dishes.

TIP! Clothes should always be washed in cold water, if possible. Almost all of the energy used to wash clothes is used to heat the water.

Instead, make sure each member of your family has sweaters, slippers and socks, or even consider investing in a stove or fireplace.

Make use of energy-efficient with products that conserve power. Double or triple glazed windows and well-insulated doors reduces energy while keeping the inside temperature more comfortable.Using these products is a great way to save money on heating and cooling energy costs.

TIP! If your home is heated with fuel oil, ask a technician if you can switch to biodiesel. There are many systems that can switch to biodiesel with needing significant modification.

There is a lot of things you can do if you want to save energy. Setting your water heater’s temperature to a maximum 120 F will also save money. Every little thing you do will help.

A lot of people have thought about converting to green energy, but not many of them really spend time to learn what to do to incorporate it into their lifestyle. You have just read some great ideas that can help your home become green and sustainable without spending too much time or money.

TIP! If you’re not using an appliance, turn it off. When exiting rooms, turn off the computer, television or lights.

Solar Energy: How Can It Help You?

Solar energy has garnered lots of interest in recent years. As environmental damage caused by mankind becomes more apparent, people are beginning to search for ways they can help repair it by using renewable energy. Keep reading for solar energy.

If you want solar panels that are efficient, choose systems that do not totally depend on when the sun shines. This is great if you use power in your home at nighttime.

TIP! Your solar power system’s ability to produce power depends on several factors, such as the efficiency of the panels and how many you purchase. You will need to do a little math to calculate the number of panels you will need.

You should figure out how you can store your energy after you get it made by your solar energy system you’re using. A good battery that you should look into to facilitate proper storage.

If you are going to rent a solar energy system rather than purchasing it, ensure the contract you sign gives you the option of transferring the lease.

Solar power benefits do not require direct sunlight or a particular temperature. Some people even report improved power will protest that they’ve gotten the best results on the worst looking days.

You can get hefty credits from your government if you switch to solar energy. You may get as high as 30% of the installation cost back!

Solar energy is going to be the environment. Now is the best time to check out this kind of energy.

If you are thinking about using solar power, look for areas that can be easily converted. Starting with small solar-powered appliances will help you transition easier without disrupting your daily routine. A gradual conversion will help the long-term commitment.

TIP! You don’t have to remove your whole roof to use solar energy. You can make small switches like putting in solar powered outside lights.

If you still have a mortgage on your home, the initial costs involved with solar panels may prove to be too much of a financial burden, and you might end up losing both investments if you cannot make payments on your home anymore.

Check your local and state regulations before installing solar panels. You don’t want to install a system and then have to take it down due to regulations.

Solar Energy

TIP! Panels that are easily rotated have the best efficiency. But if you have to have a fixed panel, choose the best compromise between positions that you can.

Can you see the benefits you can receive from solar energy? Solar represents a truly great energy source, since it does not harm the environment and is able to provide lots of people with the power they need. Solar energy is something that everyone would be wise to choose. You’ll be glad you did and so will the rest of the Earth.

Check Out This Article For A Wonderful Source Of Information About Solar Energy

There is no question that having solar panels in your home is a great way to help the environment. You should make certain that solar energy makes budgetary sense. The advice below is what you should know about solar and if it is right for you.

Start small when you want to start using solar power. You can find these in almost any type of home improvement stores. They are very easy to install as any other garden light.

TIP! The best solar panels are attached to your roof so that they can be adjusted for optimal sunlight throughout the seasons. If you have to put in panels with fixed angles, try to position it so it will work for both winter and summer months.

You can do your energy bills and protect the environment by using solar panels to heat water. You will find solar systems in both tankless and standard water heaters. You can install one in a good location positioned on your roof.

If you’re leasing your solar energy device, ensure the contract you sign gives you the option of transferring the lease.

Solar Panels

TIP! If you install solar panels, be sure to have a backup system in place in case they malfunction. Remaining connected to the main power grid is your best option but you could invest in a generator.

You should also consider a back-up plan in case the even your solar panels don’t work as they should. You can either get a generator or stay on the power grid and use this when your solar panels are down.

Direct sunlight and a certain temperature are not always necessary.Some people will solar power will protest that they’ve gotten the best results on grey days.

Crunch your numbers if you want to invest in solar panels for your home. Depending on where you are, a solar energy installation might cost too much to be worth the possible energy savings.

You can get tax credits from your government for using solar power. You may get as much as 30% of the system’s cost.

There are many different innovations being made with solar energy systems. Whether looking for a big system for your business or a smaller one for your home, you can find one if you take the time to look.

Solar Energy

TIP! Think carefully about whether solar power is a good choice for you. Several important factors must be considered.

It should be clearer as to how solar energy will affect you financially. Solar energy is often an excellent energy option; however, if your home doesn’t get good sunlight, it may not be the best choice for you. Use the advice given above to help you decide whether or not solar panels are worth it.