Choosing My Contractor

Choosing My Contractor

Three Key Tips For Adding Solar Power To Your Home

Diego Rojas

Solar power can be an excellent source of green energy. With solar panels, you can produce your own power at home, lowering or even eliminating your energy bill. In most sunny areas, there are at least a few different companies you can hire to install solar panels on your property. Here are a few tips to follow if you do decide to use solar power.

1. Consider solar roofing instead of solar panels.

Solar panels, which are typically mounted on racks on the roof, are often seen as the go-to solar option. They do, indeed, work well for many homeowners. However, there is an alternative that is becoming more common. It's known as solar roofing. Solar roofing consists of flat, shingle or tile-like segments that have built-in solar cells. It's essentially a roof with built-in solar capabilities. Solar roofs look less cumbersome; most look like any other roof, at least from a distance. They are not as heavy as solar panels, are often easier to repair and work on, and can save you money if you already need a new roof. It's worth getting an estimate for both solar roofing and solar panels before you pick between them.

2. Don't disconnect from the grid immediately.

Your ultimate goal may be to disconnect from the grid and make all of your own power. This is entirely possible in many sunny areas, although you will need some batteries to store your extra electricity for nighttime and cloudy days. You should not, however, disconnect from the grid as soon as you have solar installed. Wait and see how much your panels are producing, and make sure your home can be fully self-supported before you disconnect. Once you disconnect, it can be a lot of work to reconnect, so you don't want to do so prematurely.

3. Make plans to reduce your energy use.

To run your home fully off solar power, you may need to make some changes and conserve electricity. Most homeowners can do this without drastically changing their lifestyles. Make a list of ways you can save. Some simple ideas include shutting the lights off when you're not in a room, turning the AC up a degree or two, and washing clothes in cold water. If you can implement these before you install solar, it won't be such a big adjustment at once.

With the tips above, you can enjoy greater flexibility and an easier lifestyle with solar power.


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Choosing My Contractor

By the time I finally finished saving money for my new home, I knew that I wanted something special. I didn't want to buy a starter home, and I really didn't want to deal with fixing up an older place. Instead of scouring the market and dealing with real estate agents, I decided to work with a general contractor to start building a place of my own. However, I didn't choose my contractor willy nilly either. I spend hours interviewing and researching various construction firms until I found the business I wanted to work with. This blog is all about working with contractors, so that you can make better construction decisions.