The importance of using the abundant Florida sunlight for powering your home to save money and save the environment
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, “Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source available, and the U.S. has some of the richest solar resources in the world.” That being said, Florida has an especially advantageous stance in the field of solar energy. Lovingly nicknamed the “Sunshine State,” Florida gives its residents the opportunity year-round to harness its unforgivingly hot sunshine to save money.
While many people believe that solar energy equipment is far too expensive to afford, a different perspective on the subject will reveal that this equipment is actually relatively cheap. Consider solar energy as an investment. It takes an initially large payment, but the paybacks more than make up for the investment as time goes on. An interesting case study done by the Energy Informative explains that it would take roughly 10 years to break even on the installation of house-wide solar panels, and then you can sit back and enjoy 15 years of returns after that.
It takes an initially large payment, but the paybacks more than make up for the investment as time goes on.
Maybe you’re not planning on living in your house for another 25 years, so installing solar panels doesn’t exactly seem like the right move. However, you should know that installing solar panels in your house can dramatically add to your property value. According to Clean Technica, “each 1-kilowatt (kW) increase in rooftop solar system size adds $5,911 to a home’s resale value.” That’s a fiscally responsible reason to convert to solar energy, but it still requires a huge commitment.
So, in the meantime, here are some examples of energy-saving options that could provide a little more green for a little less green:
Solar Water Heaters
Who doesn’t love a hot shower in the morning? Knowing that the warm water is being provided by the 27 million degree sun makes that shower even better. Also, solar water heaters are a great way to help the environment without breaking the bank or making a huge investment. Solar water heaters are only a little more expensive than gas heaters, but they provide quite the payback in electricity bills, especially in Florida. How do they work? Well, like most solar energy systems, they use solar panels to generate energy for heating purposes by warming up the water as it moves through the system, but they also have a backup system just in case the sun decides not to shine for a while.
Solar Attic Fans
We know that having a nice, cool attic in Florida is a difficult task. Therefore, one great way to solve this problem is through a solar attic fan. Something most people never even consider is that a great way to cool down their house is to start from the top, so to speak. As one of the cheapest forms of solar energy, solar attic fans only require a solar panel on the roof attached to a fan that hangs below into the attic. These fans help keep the temperature below sweltering so your air conditioning does not have to fight the intense heat of the attic, especially during those blazing Floridian summer.
While they sound like something out of a sci-fi movie, they’re actually much more residential than you might think. Solar tubes are simply tubes that extend from your roof to your living room, bathroom, or bedroom ceiling. They’re lined with reflective panels on the inside so they can harness the power of the sun and serve as electricity-free lights. Generally smaller, cheaper, and safer than sunroofs, they’re a great way to provide fresh, free sunlight to any room in your house.
Solar Pool Heaters
Granted, you need a pool before you can have a solar pool heater. However, a large population of Florida does have a pool. So, if you’re one of the lucky ones that can swim in your own backyard, brace yourself, because you’re about to get even luckier. Good news: you can heat up your pool with a solar heater. The technology for this convenience is fairly simple. After the pool water has been filtered, it’s strained through solar connectors that are attached to a solar panel, which is usually located on the roof of your house. These solar connectors heat up the water and return it to the pool. Again, solar pool heaters are relatively inexpensive and a great way to save on energy costs each month while keeping your pool a cool, comfortable temperature.
These are just a few suggestions for great ways to be environmentally friendly while simultaneously saving money with the solar energy system. Our website has even more information on many of these economical solar energy options. To learn more about how Gator Air and Energy can help you get in on solar energy, contact us.