Solar Energy Blog

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Residential Solar Power

Posted on March 22, 2012 | 1 Comment

Many homeowners are looking towards the use of residential solar power for a number of reasons. It is fast becoming a very effective way for homeowners to reduce electricity costs and gives anyone a chance to reduce their carbon footprint and do their part to help the environment. With the cost of solar power in Ontario decreasing year after year, adding a solar energy system to your home is becoming more and more feasible and something that more homeowners are starting to look into. The overall competition in the residential solar energy industry is increasing, which means it is becoming cheaper for people to solarize their homes.

Residential Solar PowerBecause solar power is cost free (once set up) and is obviously an abundant, renewable source of energy a large number of homeowners have already taken advantage of this clean power source and are seeing the benefits. Residential solar energy can definitely be seen as an easy way to make a huge difference in both your life (financially) and the lives of your children and your children’s children (ecologically). 10 years ago it may have taken quite some time to see the financial gains from installing a residential solar power system, but now you can see a positive return on your investment in as little as several months.

In a nutshell, residential solar power works by converting sunlight into direct current electricity with the PV or photovoltaic effect. These days, solar energy systems are very easy to maintain so if maintenance is one of your larger worries about installing one, rest assured that maintenance will be very easy and inexpensive. Most solar energy systems used for residential homes will last you a lifetime with very little maintenance required.

Another added benefit about residential solar that we talked a little about in our article about Solar Energy Pros and Cons is that many solutions will give you the ability to turn your electricity meter backwards. This means that you can sell excess energy back to your local power company!

The Most Common Uses for Residential Solar Power
Residential solar power can be used for as little or as much as you want. In fact, there are probably a large percentage of homes on your block that already use it for smaller things in and around their gardens such as lights or ponds. A smaller installation could be used to power a couple of appliances, whereas larger installations can power your entire home getting you off the power grid completely.

Is Residential Solar Power Right For Me?

Residential Solar EnergyWhile it is fairly safe to say that almost any home can benefit from the use of solar energy, it is highly recommended to first have a feasibility study done on your home to determine for sure. The feasibility study will determine approximately how much solar energy your panels are going to absorb, based on the solar radiation that your home or area receives on average each day.

The study will take into account the structure of your home (including the direction of your roof line if you are installing on your roof) and the overall amount of sunlight/shade that your home receives each day. You’ll need to ensure that any solar panels you install have access to sufficient amount of sunlight in order to support the amount of electricity that you’re going to need.

Generally speaking, solar panels will work at anywhere from 8%-18% efficiency. While this may not sound like much, in many cases with the right set up you’ll be able to power your entire home while at the same time rolling your energy meter backwards. Just imagine how cool it would feel to be out swimming and relaxing in your solar heated swimming pool while your residential solar power system is powering your entire home as well as pumping energy back into your city electrical grid, saving you money each and every day.



Comment

  • Doug

    March 22, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Great post! My wife and I did a residential solar system install back in 2005 and it has already paid for itself 10x over. It is totally a worthwhile investment and I would highly recommend going solar to anyone out there on the fence about it.

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