Which alternative energy source is more efficient and cheaper to maintain: solar

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  1. Aya Katz profile image80
    Aya Katzposted 15 years ago

    Which alternative energy source is more efficient and cheaper to maintain: solar panels or windmills?

  2. h_blunck profile image44
    h_blunckposted 15 years ago

    Solar panels and windmills are essential attempts at becoming fossile fuel independent. We will examine some of the benefits of each of them. read more

  3. profile image56
    cubit07posted 15 years ago
  4. Bucks here profile image61
    Bucks hereposted 15 years ago

    Solar panels with batteries and inverters

  5. profile image0
    LeM22posted 15 years ago

    I looked into this myself last year as I'm planning to move. WIndmills are expensive! And, they are harder to work into building codes and local laws. You could make one yourself and I'm sure that would reduce costs. Solar panels...it depends on size and use and how many, but the technology seems to be more advanced, useful, and user-friendly.

  6. JonSterling profile image60
    JonSterlingposted 14 years ago

    In Texas Solar is more efficient - the only time wind power would be a better investment is if the windmills were set up out in the Gulf Coast where the wind is more constant -

    Personally I like the idea of micro-hydro generation - by living next to a river or stream that can turn the current into electricity - it's cheaper and easier to maintain.

  7. Renewable_Energy profile image61
    Renewable_Energyposted 14 years ago

    I think that depends on several factors.

    The location is key. If you are in an area of high average wind speed but there is low sun volume then i would think a windmill generator would be more efficient and vice versa.

    The space you have to install either solar panels or windmill(s) and the direction they can face will also determine there efficiency. I mean you may have a lot of space that doesn't face the sun so solar panels would not work to there full capacity. Or the available space could be sheltered from the prevailing winds by buildings etc, again making a windmill generator almost useless.

    As far as costs to maintain, i personaly would think a windmill would be cheaper as they are less complicated.

    I found a guide that can help with working out suitability and costs. It also gives step by step video instruction on how to make a windmill generator and solar panels. If you chose to make them yourself then the cost to install them will be significantly lower than buying them pre made.

    Anyway I hope this is of some use and you can find more info here
    http://www.squidoo.com/DIY-WINDMILL-ELE … -GENERATOR

  8. steve1717 profile image57
    steve1717posted 14 years ago

    solar panels by a mile ..and prices are falling fast ,so go for panels.Pv panels will even make electricity from moonlight ,ok not much but still they getter and better.

  9. spartanking1978 profile image61
    spartanking1978posted 14 years ago

    Wind energy is definitely a cheaper alternative source. However, here in California it is far from the most efficient solution. Despite the benefits of installing a photovoltaic energy system, they require a serious investment. For information regarding a do-it-yourself (DIY) solar system visit my hub:


    Do your research either way, knowledge is power!

  10. aidgib profile image59
    aidgibposted 14 years ago

    A solar panel needs little maintenance as there are no moving parts.

    But where I live wind power is the way to go.

  11. 12V-Solar profile image56
    12V-Solarposted 14 years ago

    It is simple: it depends on the location. If you are in a location with gusty and steady wind wind energy will outperform solar (photovoltaic) by far no matter of the sun irradiance. The outperformance of wind energy would also cover easily the higher maintenance costs of wind energy. I am myself in the solar business and from my experience the conditions are usually favourable for solar energy and this is what makes it so popular amongst consumers and as a financial asset.

    What do you need your system for?
    I dont know about the prices in the US but in Germany as in most other European countries solar energy is backed up by the government. People are all crazy about it nowadays as it pays out to have a solarsystem installed on your roof.

  12. lumen2light profile image58
    lumen2lightposted 14 years ago

    Most domestic renewable energy sources are relativly expensive, but they are slowly getting cheaper. Usually suppliers are apt to give better dicounts the more they supply, so if you can get a number of your neighbours together you may be able to get a good deal.
    The most efficient is hydro, if you are close to a suitable stream, cost for cost a hydro system will give the most power, constantly with minimum maintenance costs. 
    A good quality wind turbine will produce more power than the average solar panel, but they tend to be more expencive to install and considerably more to maintain. Check the wind first, some turbines will not produce at low wind speeds.
    Solar pannels are not very efficient, but they are practically maintenance free. So once they have been install you can enjoy the free power they provide.

  13. Has_aWayWithWords profile image62
    Has_aWayWithWordsposted 14 years ago

    Wind power is by far more efficient and cleaner, wind turbines can produce far more energy output per unit that solar panels can. The real benefit to solar is diversity, solar can produce electricity and also produce heat at the same time. From strictly an efficiency clean stand point wind is superior, from a diversit standpoint solar is better.

  14. doodlebugs profile image90
    doodlebugsposted 14 years ago

    In areas where there is ample wind, such as the Texas pandhandle, windmills are more cost efficient. They do require more upkeep than solar panels though. For places where there is not a constant breeze, solar panels are the better choice. It comes down to whether you want ease of maintenance or energy output. A solar panel in the shade is low maintenance but does you no good.

  15. greanearth83 profile image40
    greanearth83posted 14 years ago

    Ok well everyone seems to prefer one or the other. Here's the facts wind turbines have moving parts they can wear out and break down but now a days that is to a minimum. Solar = no moving parts they will degrade over time but most maintain a similar output for up to 40 years the only thing you need is a bottle of Windex or a hose to keep the surface clean. Im my opinion neither is best. The best most well rounded system is a variation of both. a Hybrid system that is able to catch wind combined with solar panels that are able to harvest the sun when its out. Realistically when the wind is blowing its at night or when a big storm is blowing through . When the sun is out all you can think is geesh i wish there were a nice breeze so i dont cook to death.. get the point? one or the other will leave you without power. Both will eliminate that. and actually if you know witch is most prominent in your aria wind or sun then you can go out and hook up something that caters to that while still being able to take advantage of the other. such as a cheap wind turbine and a nice solar array. Or maybe a nice low wind turbine and a big solar array. this way you can take advantage of both efficiently all the time. doing a hybrid system is often cheaper long term and if you would like to find out more please take the time to visit my site at http://www.greenlivings.biz

  16. sustenergy profile image57
    sustenergyposted 13 years ago

    Maintenance of solar panels will be cheaper, as there are no moving parts. To integrate a wind mill into your home will be difficult - you don't want a device capturing wind and exposed to these forces on your roof. You'd need space to put it somewhere else.

    Regarding efficiency, when comparing like with like (solar roofs and small wind turbines), the yield is about the same. At the heights that these small domestic turbines are built, one can expect around the same full-load equivalent hours as for photovoltaics (around 1000 hours). Also the cost for these small units will be about the same.

    For larger units in the MW range, the story will be very different. Cost/kW for larger wind turbines goes down much more rapidly than for photovoltaics. And at the heights these units are built, one can expect between 3,000 and 4,000 hours of full-load equivalent output for good sites. So wind would be the better option.

  17. profile image54
    ricieposted 13 years ago

    Solar panels don't make as much power as wind turbines but once the suns up on them they produce the power and they last for 10years @ 90% power and 80% at 10 years. Wind turbines can make way more power for the size depending on the permanent magnet motor you use
    or you can get pma witch is a alternator modifid for the use of a wind turbine but there very expensive. you can check out my hub page and it tells you how to make a solar panel my web site at the bottom. Where ima put how to make a wind turbine but thats not goin to be for a few weeks

  18. Wilsonsorin2011 profile image59
    Wilsonsorin2011posted 12 years ago

    Solar about kilometer and prices fall quickly, go to. PV panels will make electricity from Henriques, OK, very limited, but still best getter.


  19. profile image50
    jackdohsonposted 11 years ago

    Definitely Solar panels are more efficient than windmills. Contact the www.solawise.co.uk for installing the solar panels for your home.


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