Feathers ruffled by the soaring fuel prices? Looking for an environmentally friendly way to approach building a new home or revamp your current home? Start with your home’s water heating, which can consist of 20% of a home’s gas usage. By harnessing the sun’s energy right at your home, you can use less fuel and incur fewer transport costs to get the energy to your home, ultimately decreasing our communal reliance on non-renewable resources.
Simple and sleek solar panels can be installed on a south-facing roof or open area where sunshine is readily available. They can be used in any climate, though warmer climates tend to see bigger savings. Depending on your location and the type of solar panels installed, you can generate 100% of your home water heating emission-free. A solar water heating system can also provide all the hot water for your pool, saving you an average of $700 each year. In addition, many states and local governments offer alluring tax incentives to encourage the use of solar panels. Sounds like a pretty hot idea!
So what’s the downside? Solar panels require a larger upfront cost than traditional home water heating systems, such as oil and electrical based ones. Solar may only be the way to go if you know you will be stationary for long enough to reap the cost benefits down the road. A solar heating system will typically pay for itself, through savings, within 4 to 8 years. Considering that the sun is a renewable, reliable and free resource that isn’t going anywhere, you will see a permanent drop in your energy bill of one-fifth after the technology pays back.
Take Action / Next Steps
Learn more about the basics of solar water heating at Solar Basics.
Find out what type of solar water heaters is most appropriate for your climate and situation from the Department of Energy
Check out the DSIRE website for information on your state’s policies and available tax incentives.
Did you know that we have the ability to produce 100% of our own energy through renewable resources?
We currently have the technology, whether through wind, hydroelectricity or the sun, to sustain ourselves
entirely in the energy field. However, 80% of the energy consumed by Americans is derived from fossil fuels, most of which
strengthens our dependency on foreign oil. Self-sufficiency is the most conflict and carbon-free way to be!
Did you know that solar water heaters can pay for themselves in savings in just a few years?
According to the EESI, residential solar water heater systems cost between $1,500 and $3,500, while electric and
gas heaters range between $150 and $450. However, the solar water heaters pay for themselves in four to eight years, through
savings in electricity and natural gas. After the initial payback period, you will basically be getting heat and energy at
no cost whatsoever! As fossil fuel prices increase and technology is streamlined, solar technology will become a cheaper and
more efficient alternative.
Did you know that the U.S. offers tax credits of up to 30% of the installation cost of solar hot water?