by Lauren Busser The House Designers’ Editorial Director
Every minute one American home switches to solar power. It's no wonder when you consider that using daylight for lighting and other electrical needs can cut down significantly on your energy bills, and in some cases can actually turn you a profit. Solar power is catching on so fast that in the last year the White House and even the iconic 'Welcome to Las Vegas' sign have gone solar. If you think that solar is out of your reach, think again. Not only are there many incentives but different companies are now offering a variety of options to help make the transition easy for you.
These shingles from DOW POWERHOUSE™ have solar panels built right in and are changing the way that the world looks at roofs, simply by making it work harder. These shingles generate electricity from the sun’s ray to power your life while still keeping your home protected from the elements. Roofs with DOW POWERHOUSE™ shingles generate electricity, increase your home’s value, and are one of the smartest investments you can make for your home. Not to mention the integrated design means that they will blend seamlessly into your home’s exterior.
Decrease Your Footprint
If you are looking for a green energy alternative, consider the benefits of solar. Unlike oil and gas, daylight is a free resource everyone has access to and daylight and a few solar panels are all you need to get started.
The average American household generates 7.4 tons of carbon dioxide per year through electrical use and carbon dioxide is a proven cause of global warming. By installing a solar system you can conserve more than 16,000 gallons of water per year, which conventional energy sources consume and reduce our reliance on foreign and nonrenewable energy sources.
SolarWorld is America’s leading industry manufacturer for solar panels since 1975.
Increase Your Home’s Value
Not only will you be helping to conserve water and reduce dependency on foreign and nonrenewable energy sources, you will also increase your home’s resale value. Studies performed by Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory show that adding a solar system can increase your home’s value by an average of $5.50 to $6.40 a watt depending on your home’s location.
Not to mention, studies have also shown that homes with solar systems sell fifteen percent faster than homes without.
Solar is not just for your electrical systems—it can also be used to provide hot water.
Heliodyne solar hot water is a system designed to do just that. It is a quality system that can be used to heat water for everyday use or even heat a pool as shown here. Not only is solar hot water one of the best ways to heat your pool but it can extend the swim season by several weeks, paying for itself in as little as two years.
Different states have different energy saving initiatives. A solar installer can tell you more about what is available on both the state and federal level.
Not only are there upfront savings but the average savings for a solar home is 50 percent of your electric with the possibility of being able to completely zero out your electricity costs.
SolarCity® is a full service provider. Their goal is to make solar power accessible by removing the upfront cost.
Made in the U.S.A.
One of the best things about solar panels is that they are made in the United States. Several companies like DOW POWERHOUSE™ and SolarWorld are based in the united states, and dedicated to producing high-quality products.
Whatever your reasons for going solar, you can be sure that it's a smart investment. It will save you money, is much better for the environment and with many payment options you are sure to find something within your budget.
Looking for an energy-efficient house plan for your solar panels? Take a look at the Lamare house plan. Part of our energy-efficient house plan collection this home utilizes ENERGY STAR® materials and green building practices.