‘Solar Hot Water’ Category
» posted on Saturday, May 21st, 2011 at 10:25 am by Woody Wilson viewed 160 times
This subject is not new. Man has made energy for thousands of years since the first camp fire. Some renewable eco-friendly energy technology is new and becoming very popular around the word.
- DIY Energy Projects
- Solar Photo Voltaic
- Wind Turbine Generator
- Solar Hot Water
- Solar Air Heater
- Geothermal Heat Pump
- Magnetic Generator
- Home Energy Audit
- Solar Installation Course
Cost is a factor and startup costs are lower than ever. Residential Energy Kit is dedicated to presenting Do-it-Yourself (DIY) plans, guides and products to help you go green and save our environment. DIY projects are 1/3rd to 1/10th the investment cost of commercial solutions. For example, a completely solar home commercial cost is $20,000 to $80,000 with a 25 year pay back. DIY can do the same project for $3,000 to $5,000 with a 3 year pay back.
As populations grow and wealth increases, the stress on our planets resources grows too. Now we have to be more conservative and use alternative energy sources. Methods for reducing energy consumptions should be our first effort. Insulate, seal, use energy star products, and many other methods need to be employed. These are detailed in our Articles
Another consideration to saving our environment is to stop using power company energy. Over half of the US electricity comes from coal. Coal and oil usage is extensive around the world. We can make our own energy at home. The energy is free in nature. We just have to harvest this energy with techniques that are more feasible today than ever before. Wind, Solar, Solar Hot Water, Wave, Geo-Thermal and Fuel Cell technologies are readily available and encouraged by governments around the word. Energy Tax Credit Incentives of up to 30% can save you a ton of money. This is Important ~ If you seriously want free energy at home and you are willing to build a device yourself to save investment cost, you need a guide. They are relatively inexpensive. You will find my critical reviews under the Index on our Home page. These new guides have all the development worked out and offer step by step instruction. This will save you both time and money. Usually you can be operational in less than a week. All of these guides are written for the layman without high technical requirements. Material and tools required are common around the house items. The first model that you make is like training. Once you make your first, you can make another bigger and more powerful.
With all these projects you can scale up the size to eliminate most if not all your dependence on the power company (the grid). These guides even show you how to tie into the grid (grid tie) and sell the power company your excess electricity. That’s right. The power company will pay you for power!!. Make power at home with solar or wind to eliminate your power bill. Get our complete guide at Residential Energy Kit
» posted on Thursday, December 30th, 2010 at 11:57 am by Woody Wilson viewed 14 times
By CHRISTY SWIFT
Published: December 27, 2010
SEBRING – Walking into the Million’s pleasant Sebring home all decorated for Christmas, you would never know that it’s almost entirely powered by the sun.
Jerry Million, 87, and his wife Elli, 83, showed off their most recent electric bill: $13.
“Just a little bit of a change,” joked Jerry, who admitted a typical bill in the past ranged from $150-$200 a month.
The Millions have two hot water heating panels and 22 photovoltaic solar panels on the backside of their roof with plans to install 12 more. It’s hard to get a look at them without climbing up on the roof or backing far enough away from the house to see the sloping shingles with discreet, black rectangles attached.
How do solar panels work?
The water heating panels are designed to do just that – heat water for the home. They do not produce electricity. The Millions installed their two hot water panels 15 years ago. “They won the contest 15 years ago for being the most efficient,” said Jerry. “I paid an outrageous price for them – $650,” he said, keeping the jokes going. “It was such a good deal, I think. They pay for themselves every three years.”
The Millions were very impressed with the results from the hot water panels, saying that they never ran out of hot water once and that the temperature of the water was “boiling hot.”
Jerry decided he wanted to go ahead and start installing photovoltaic panels, which are able to convert the sun’s rays into electricity that can be used to power the rest of the home. They had 22 panels installed in June 2009 by a local company known as One Solar.
Photovoltaic solar panels make use of clean, renewable energy from the sun and are connected into the home’s electricity meter. When the panels make electricity, it causes the meter to run backwards and when the household uses electricity, the meter runs forward. At the end of the month, the electric company (in the Million’s case Progress Energy) sends them a bill for the difference. If the home produces more energy than the household uses, the electric company actually purchases that electricity from the homeowner.
The Millions haven’t made any money off their panels yet, but they are expecting to once they get the next 12 panels installed. “General Electric is coming out with new panels with a substantial operating efficiency. Much better than what we have now,” said Jerry, excited to take advantage of the newest technology.
He figures that if he can get a $13 electric bill with 22 older model panels, the 12 new upgraded panels should make a big difference. “Right now we’ve got a big irrigation system because of the two vineyards on the property,” he added, speaking of his 1.5 acres of muscadine grape vines. “You can’t even tell that we’re using big electrical pumps.”
But is the new installation isn’t really about making money from the electric company. Jerry and Elli have their eyes on the future. “My thinking was, quite honestly, we’re getting to run out of oil and it won’t be too many years and then what the heck is mankind going to do?” said Jerry.
A big Warren Buffett fan and stock trader himself, Jerry quoted the legendary investor. “Warren Buffett said one thing: in 20 years the cars coming off the line will be predominantly electric.” Jerry plans to buy an electric car and fuel it from his roof.
Which car is he planning to buy? “He’s studying that,” said Elli.
“I probably at this particular moment, and excuse me for saying it, but the Chinese are out in front,” Jerry admitted. “The Chinese are going to have one according to Buffett that goes 250 miles with no recharge. That gets me over to the V.A. hospital in Bay Pines and gets me back.”
How much did it cost?
The hot water panels cost the Millions $650 fifteen years ago, but the photovoltaics were another story. They had to come up with $37,000 for installation of the 22 panels up front, but have since received a federal rebate for $11,000. The state of Florida owes them another $20,000 rebate, which the Millions have yet to see. If the state comes through, that would put the Millions’ total cost of ownership at $6,000, which means the panels would pay for themselves in two and a half to three years.
The Millions are not pleased about the delay in the rebate payment, but Jerry feels worse for those who had to borrow money in order to go solar. “A lot of people took out a loan with the bank. They haven’t gotten their money yet, but they’ve gotten (to pay) interest on it!”
Retired and relaxing
A retired photographer with the Aviation Section of the U.S. Signal Corps, the direct ancestor of the U.S. Air Force which was in place from 1914 to 1918, Jerry pursued a career in photography and journalism for most of his life. The Miami native met his wife Elli at age 78 through an online computer dating ad.
“He’s the luckiest man in the world!” Elli chimed in.
Elli is currently the second vice president of the Highlands County Democratic Women’s Club and has a background in politics and government. In fact, she was responsible for pioneering volunteerism in the Dade County school system back when volunteers were not allowed in public schools. Her program, which was originally started to help migrant children who were falling through the cracks, was later picked up by the Dade County School Board.
“I’m in the first history book of ‘Women Who Make a Difference’ in Dade County,” Elli admitted.
For now, the couple enjoys making wine and using the electricity that they generate without so much as lifting a finger.
“It makes sense. If that sun is up there and I can go ahead and operate this whole property, everything about it, with the energy that falls on those panels, why not take full advantage of it?” said Jerry.
He predicted that the rest of the world will eventually catch up to them, especially here in Florida where there is plenty of sun 360 days of the year to run a home with rooftop panels.
“We’ve got so much solar,” admitted Elli. “Why not use it?”
» posted on Sunday, November 14th, 2010 at 3:47 pm by Woody Wilson viewed 246 times
GetSolar Staff. Sunday, November 14th 2010 09:00
Some businesses and homeowners are motivated to go solar because they want to reduce their environmental impact – but for others, it’s all about the potential savings. By reducing the consumption of grid-sourced energy, solar power can slash a household or business’ energy bills significantly. But can a solar installation do more than break even and have a positive return on investment?
The answer is yes – with some caveats.
In most cases, solar arrays will have a payback period – the length of time they take to pay for themselves through energy savings – of no more than 15 years. (Solar water heating systems, which are much cheaper than home solar installations, have a shorter payback: Because they only cost a few thousand dollars, they will pay for themselves in far fewer than 10 years.)
In states with robust solar incentive programs, solar installations can take much less time to pay off. In places like California – which often have rebate programs at the municipal level – or New Jersey – which requires utilities to pay clean-energy producers for the power they generate – solar projects’ payback can be surprisingly short.
Yet even solar installations in states without strong rebate programs can pay for themselves in short order.
On November 12, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch profiled chemical distribution company Walsh & Associates, which recently put 416 solar panels in place at its warehouse. The array’s $500,000 price tag was offset by a 30 percent federal tax credit and a one-time, $50,000 payment from utility Ameren – but Walsh assumed the rest of the installation cost.
Even so, the company expects its solar project to be paid off in just six to nine years. The reason for the quick payoff is that Walsh will cut its energy spending sharply: By going solar, the firm will slash its $36,000 annual energy bill to just $1,500.
Assuming the array has a 25-year useful life, the chemical distributor anticipates that it will enjoy a return on investment of half a million dollars. Homeowners who go solar shouldn’t expect to save $500,000, but they, too, can see a positive ROI by installing a solar array.
Solar has environmental benefits, of course – but it’s hard to ignore the economic ones.
Solar hot-air collectors and geothermal heat pumps are two of the most environmentally friendly ways to warm your home.
Heating accounts for more than 30 percent of the energy used in the average home. Consider replacing or supplementing your heating system with solar or geothermal heating systems — two old technologies that are getting modern upgrades. Some up-front costs (and a bit of labor, in some cases) can help you save money on utility bills in the long run. You will also save energy and reduce your ecological footprint.
Solar hot-air collectors
Solar electric panels remain cost-prohibitive for many homeowners, and it may not be feasible to install enough solar electric panels to cover your heating needs. A cheaper and simpler solution is a solar hot-air collector, which can be mounted on a roof, wall or even in the back yard. Solar hot-air collectors are essentially a tempered glass panel, insulation panels and a metal collector plate layered inside an aluminum frame.
An electric fan circulates air from the house through the collector and back into the home. On sunny winter days in cold climates, the metal plate heats up the air and increases the indoor temperature, offsetting some of the furnace’s energy use.
A 2007 case study in Home Power magazine estimated that a homeowner can recoup an initial investment of $4,000 within eight years through lower natural gas bills. After eight years, he would be pocketing an estimated $500 in additional savings per year.
A solar hot-air collector also could cost far less than $4,000. I have found a solution to high energy costs and have learned how to replace most of my heating costs with a ‘Solar Heater’ that you can build with parts from around your home and for as little as $30. read more …
Geothermal heat pumps
Geothermal, or geoexchange, heat pumps (GHPs) are a more expensive prospect and are certainly not a DIY project. GHPs, which require professional installation, take advantage of the constant temperature six feet under your home. Because the subsurface temperature is relatively warm in winter and cool in summer, a GHP can replace both your heating and air conditioning systems.
Installing a Geothermal Heat Pump WILL Save you thousands in heating and cooling costs, and WILL Repay itself many times over. Read more about installation
Residential geothermal heat systems have been used since the 1940s, so they are certainly not a new idea. However, the systems are getting less expensive, more reliable and more technologically advanced.
The best GHPs run water, rather than air, through the system, and can even supply hot water for the house. The newest models have two-speed compressors and variable fans for additional comfort and energy savings.
There are new EnergyStar ratings for GHPs to help you choose a reliable, energy-efficient system. Efficient models also qualify for a federal tax credit for 30 percent of the purchase price, with no upper limit on the dollar value of the tax credit (unlike most tax credits for efficiency upgrades). There are also state tax credits and incentives for GHPs.
The Department of Energy estimates a GHP for the average-size home would cost about $7,500, but suggests that the initial cost can be repaid in under 10 years by reducing or eliminating heating, cooling and hot water bills.
Geothermal and solar heat systems are not new ideas, but they are becoming more advanced. Also, tax incentives and rising utility bills make these efficient options more attractive.