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Is Solar Energy in Your Future?

Updated on March 29, 2019
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Writing is a hobby which I have picked up again after being away from it for four decades actually, while I was busy with a career.

Everyone is talking about solar power, and in fact, the world over more and more countries are trying to tap into this virtually free resource that provides both heat and light in abundant quantity, every day of the year. Fuel prices are constantly climbing, and the efficiency of solar cells is constantly improving, while prices are going down, thus making it an ideal long term solution to saving on your energy bills.

Are Costs Inhibitive

Solar cells are not cheap. In fact, the high cost is mainly due to the fact that a lot of energy is used to refine the materials that have the photovoltaic properties that convert solar light into electrical energy. Low efficiencies, which were earlier turnoffs, are steadily improving, and the increasing popularity and demand for cells have led to large volumes that encourage production and reduce costs for manufacturers.

Get On to the Grid

While earlier, it would have taken a decade for recovering costs, this is steadily reducing and is being helped by the fact that governments all over give some form of subsidies for people wanting to use solar energy to power their homes. An added factor that is encouraging the switch to tap solar energy comes from the fact that power utility companies are willing to buy extra power from solar cell installations, while also agreeing to provide for any power shortage.

Other Ways to Use Solar Energy

You can also use the heat from the sun and install devices that can collect the heat from the sun and use it to heat water. Though the temperatures achieved may not be very high, this water can be used as feed for boilers and reduce the costs of heating water substantially. The actual collectors do not cost much, and just require careful positioning on roofs or open spaces, so that they can get the maximum advantage of the sun shining on them. Solar heat has also been used by focusing the heat through mirrors, again to heat water or for cooking.

Moving Forward

Check your power consumption to help you decide the size of the photovoltaic system that you need to set up for your energy needs. You also need to have a roof or open area that can allow installation of panels that can collect the energy from the sun. The orientation is important and needs careful selection. Check on rebates and grants available, and whether your energy supplier will take the excess power you may have. This can help you to reduce capital costs, as then you need not to install batteries to store the power, which can add substantially to costs. Examine other areas where you can use the energy from the sun to help you in your daily living.


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