Solar Power In Your Home Is Cheaper Than You Think

Implementing solar power doesn’t have to be difficult! If the thought of converting to renewable energy conjures up images of your house looking like a construction site and money flying out of your wallet, prepare for your reality check.

Discarded Lightbulb from Crestock Stock Photo

Implementing solar power doesn’t have to be difficult! If the thought of converting to renewable energy conjures up images of your house looking like a construction site and money flying out of your wallet, prepare for your reality check.

The truth is that a variety of factors are driving the price of solar technology ever further down. The glass on solar panels is the same glass used on flat-screen TVs. Ten years ago, this same glass would’ve been a novel piece of technology that would’ve had to have been specifically manufactured for solar use. Being so commonplace as they are now, it has become cheaper to produce, and as a result, solar panels are cheaper for the consumer. Ingenious science has even allowed solar panels to be made out of silicon on thin sheets of plastic. With this new advent, there’s no telling where or on what solar panels will appear next (cell phones, perhaps?).

As tempting the idea is to flip your entire house over to solar energy, try by starting with the small stuff. As with any project, it becomes a lot less overwhelming if you focus on little parts one at a time. Start by making one particular room, your computer, or even your MP3 charger solar-sufficient. While you’ll be saving a little bit on your electrical bill by doing this, more importantly, you’ll be more aware of your energy consumption. Being energy-conscious is an important step that is easy to overlook. Many leave the lights on all night without even thinking about it, but when you’re the one providing the energy for those lights, the responsibility will help remind you to keep your power use in check.

For the truly ambitious, or just the avid handyman, the process of taking your house off the electrical grid completely is actually quite a doable job.  Days and a few hundred dollars are all that you’ll need to part with. Michael Boxwell, author of Solar Electricity Handbook, can attest to this: “It’s not a big job,” he guarantees.  “I spent about $150-$200, and I’ve got a basic system” (Boxwell has enough panels just to take care of the lighting in his home).

To make the most of it, just make sure you have a home with a good view of the sun year-round and a surface where you can put your solar panels. Just a simple change can reduce your carbon footprint, and free yourself from the shackles of conventional electricity in the event of a power failure, blackout, or just the annoying blown fuse.

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11 Responses to “Solar Power In Your Home Is Cheaper Than You Think”

  1. Jewel Philips
    June 7, 2010 at 1:13 am #

    This is amazing. A few hundred bucks for a solar panel to light your home. My concern though would be how big a house would that require. Our place would really benefit from this if its really cost-effective.

  2. Ariel Liluz
    June 9, 2010 at 3:11 am #

    It’s great that solar is more affordable then ever. Like other consumer products, it’s always best to shop around and compare quotes for solar panels too. Plus there are differences in solar panel manufacturers, mounting and other equipment. It might not require as much research and planning as redoing a kitchen, but you should at least know what is going to be on your roof for the next 25 years.

  3. Cheryl Chong
    June 10, 2010 at 6:57 am #

    Doesn’t it sound neat (and super tempting?) I don’t think there’s a minimum or maximum to the size of your house for one to do this. The time and cost would I guess be proportional to your home (small house = fewer number of panels needed to power it = less cost to implement).

  4. Brian
    June 15, 2010 at 2:13 pm #

    If your start generating enough power from your home the power companies will buy it back from you and you can actually make a return on your investment much sooner.

  5. Matthew
    June 16, 2010 at 1:18 am #

    This sounds great! It’s such an important issue and great that you’re sharing this info. I always thought it would cost a lot more than that to come off the National Grid. Will definitely be looking into it and seeing how I can make my home more eco friendly.

  6. ATV Parts
    June 17, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

    Once the price of solar power comes down a little more I think you will see more and more people moving towards alternative energy sources. I think it’s a good thing and am happy to see more and more people embrace solar power.

  7. Residential Structured Wiring
    June 24, 2010 at 5:29 am #

    The cost for alternative forms of energy has really come down in the past few years. I think the government and the energy companies are doing their part to make sure this is affordable to anyone who is interested in it. The technology has also improved in the past few years as well.

  8. Cheryl Chong
    June 30, 2010 at 10:23 am #

    Glad I could help 🙂 With info this good, I had to spread the word! I think most people still think that solar prices are still stuck in 1990 prices, which is why many are so shocked when it is in fact so cheap!

  9. Craig@Free Freebies
    July 20, 2010 at 8:58 pm #

    Yep it’s dropped in price over the years and very much affordable now.

  10. Cheryl Chong
    July 23, 2010 at 8:02 pm #

    Such great news 😀

  11. vansci123
    August 19, 2010 at 11:38 pm #

    I always thought it would cost a lot more than that to come off the National Grid. Will definitely be looking into it and seeing how I can make my home more eco friendly.

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