Off the Grid Living  Resources

Go Green with Solar and Wind Energy
by Chris Ulrich

Depending upon where you live, solar energy and/or wind energy may be something that you can utilize to assist lower your bills and help the environment.

Solar energy has been mentioned for decades, and has increased strength in current years. Many solar energy systems are far more effective than their predecessors, and over the last coupld years the cost has come down notably. More competent systems have been designed, are becoming cheaper to make and allow you to save more electric at a lower cost.

Wind is also picking up speed (pardon the pun) in the green energy market. Meanwhile, countries in Europe have used wind energy for more than 100 years, practical use to generate electricity here in the states has actually gained great attention over the last coupldl years. The new devices designed particularly for home users that can harness the power of wind and generate electricity right into your house.

To take advantage of green energy, you do need to be a homeowner. If you are renting an apartment or renting a house, it would'nt make sense for you to bring in a solar energy system. If you are even allowed to bring one home, you will not come close recouping expenses associated with that system.

For homeowners, the results can be great. First, when you install green energy (whether wind or solar) it may increase the value of your home significantly. In this tough real estate market, it may make the difference between selling your home and not selling your house. Because many homes are not yet equipped with green energy, those that are equipped are in high demand.

Solar power systems (also called solar energy systems) work with solar panels to obtain the rays of the sun. Technically, they rebound the rays of the sun, and in doing so release electrons. Those electrons are then obtained and used as electricity. More electrons to capture, the greater power you generate.

Many people will still be connected to the utility company for electricity. Solar energy will not generate at night and wind energy does not generate when there is no wind. Therefore, you do keep your account to the power grid for additional electricity. This actually works to your advantage: utilities will actually buy electricity back from you when you produce more than you can use. For example, if you are out of your home for the day and turn off all of your electronics, lights and other equipment, your electricity demand in the house will be extremely low (you should of course leave your fridge connected). When you are out, you're solar and/or wind systems continue producing electricity. If you are not there to use it, it may be pumped back into the power grid and can be used by your neighbors!

As you do this, the utility company reimburses you for the electric that you sent into the power grid-generally at the same price as they would charge you! It's an amazing phenomenon to watch when you step outside your house, look at your power meter, and watch it spin backwards!

Getting started with solar and wind is a simple process. However, you do need to do your research and speak with an expert. Be sure you get all the facts before you begin and, as with any other major spending, make sure you are working with someone reputable.

More Information: offers great information about solar energy and ways to save with solar power. Get the facts, including information on the solar power incentives available in your county!


Further Resources

For more projects