No cost electricity bill — this is what many homeowners are aspiring for. The idea is far too alluring and almost too good to be true. Imagine not having to pay for your electricity ever? Fortunately, this is not just some elusive concept that you can only dream of. It’s certainly possible when you invest in one of the most in-demand and renewable forms of electricity source — solar energy.
This should come with a caveat, however, because you need to make a range of good choices if you really want to stop paying electric bills altogether. While a good solar panel system can already take the load off your electric payments, this is just but one aspect of it. You need to make sure that you’re doing the best energy-efficient practices that you can think of. This means lowering your consumption by strategically using electrical utilities, using appliances with an excellent energy-rating, or completely transforming your home into a self-sufficient abode.
Combined with a good solar panel system, the practices above can already get you started off on the right foot. Continue reading to learn more.
Buy Solar Panels
Depending on the brand that you use, one solar panel can generate upwards of 400 Watts or even 1000 Watts of power. Compare this to the average consumption of 10,649 kilowatt hours (kWh) that a single American home produces. The figures are definitely staggering, but they ultimately can help you understand just how many solar panels you need to install for your home.
For the average person, the math can be difficult to understand, but think about it this way. If you have more solar panels that are generating power more than the amount of electricity that your household consumes on a monthly, bi-annual, or even annual basis, then you can easily come up with the no-cost electricity bill.
With a net metering system, your solar panels help you in a way “give back” to the electrical grid. If your power consumption is ideal, this may even result in you earning credits from your electrical service provider.
But aside from that, you should also consider installing solar generators to support your solar panels. These types of equipment allow you to fully maximize the use of solar energy that is collected by your panels. More than that, they can also help you efficiently measure just how much energy your panels are able to produce, allowing you to make modifications on your current setup, or invest in more devices for optimization.
Buy Appliances with a Good Energy Rating
Another thing that you can do to actualize your zero-cost bill, is to purchase appliances that have a good energy rating. It may be high-time to replace equipment that are outdated and non-energy efficient. The trend of choosing sustainable energy over other non-renewable alternatives is slowly on the rise. This means that more electrical appliance manufacturers are offering more environmentally-friendly products on the market.
For example, you can switch your old air conditioning units to inverter A/Cs. They’re able to consume less electrical power due to the built-in feature that modifies the compressor’s speed. This means that the function of the compressors will adjust to the current temperature of the room. Less refrigerant is used up in this way, which makes it more efficient compared to non-inverter A/Cs.
Aside from your air conditioning, you may also want to look into buying equipment that also gives you the option to turn on different energy-saving features. A great example is timed switches. Even if your device might not necessarily be energy-efficient, plugging it into a timed switch can limit your use of the device for several hours compared to before.
Install More Windows
It’s no surprise that households that are located in areas that experience extreme conditions will generate a higher electricity bill. For cold areas, the use of electric heaters just to warm the entire space can already set back the electric bill for many months. In warmer, tropical and subtropical areas, on the other hand, excessive use of air conditioning may also render any efforts for energy-efficiency, moot.
As a remedy to this, instead of buying non-energy-efficient equipment, people are turning towards something even more simple — installing windows. Using just the right set of windows can already increase the quality of insulation in a household — be it through hot or cold insulation.
To better illustrate this, think about it this way. When indoor temperatures are too high for comfort, simply opening the windows can let natural ventilation flow in. Alternatively, when the weather outside is unbearably cold, tightly-secured windows can keep the warmth inside and retain it much longer.
Maximizing solar energy is the ideal way of getting your electricity bill to amount to zero. While there are far more technical aspects behind it, the general idea is that if your solar panels are producing more power than your household is consuming, there’s a better chance for you to get a zero-cost bill.
You could use all the time-tested practices of turning off electrical appliances when not in use. While this is fine, it’s better to take proactive steps such as investing in a reliable solar energy system, modifying existing practices, and improving the quality of insulation in your home.