Money is a crucial factor in many household decisions; it’s a common fact of life. And that will definitely include how you pay for your power every single month.
We’ve spoken a lot about how solar energy is an effective way to lower your monthly utility costs. But how do you, as a homeowner, ensure you’ll get the most out of every penny you’ve spent to install solar?
The answer is to try some energy-saving tips, tricks, and lifestyle habits. This will lead to you using less of the power produced by your rooftop solar panels, causing your monthly bills to shrink just as they should. In this blog, we’ll talk about some important ways to be more efficient with solar.
Make energy-conscious purchases
By simply paying closer attention to the items you buy for your home, you can end up saving a lot of power and in the end, a lot of money. Energy-saving appliances help you avoid tapping into the grid, which lowers your bills.
One of the most common, easiest-to-make purchases for reducing power usage is LED lighting. By replacing your conventional light bulbs with LEDs, you can have the same amount of light with 10% of the energy. LED light bulbs are even quickly becoming more cost-effective than compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) for long-term use.
Run your energy-sapping appliances during the daytime
The largest appliances you have, such as your dishwasher, washing machine, and clothes dryer, are some of the biggest culprits when it comes to guzzling energy. Fortunately, there’s a way to use them more smartly with free solar power.
Consider purchasing and using digital timers for those devices. With these, you can set your large appliances to run during peak sunlight hours, when your solar system is generating the most power. This has the effect of lowering your grid power consumption at night or other low-sunlight times, and can drastically reduce your monthly utility costs.
Most solar systems will come with online monitoring apps so you can track the amount of power you’re generating and using. Adding a smart power management system, like the PowerGenius, will increase your self-consumption, saving you even more money on bills. These systems are designed to automatically divert power around your home where and when it’s needed the most.
Purchase solar batteries for energy storage
Again, if you’re like most homeowners, you’re not home every day, all day and certainly not during peak sunlight hours. That means missing out on self-consumption of your free solar power. One obvious solution: a bank of solar batteries.
Solar batteries can be a bit on the pricey side, but as the technology improves, they’re becoming more cost-effective for home solar system owners. Batteries can be a reliable way to store the solar energy generated by your panels for later use, rather than drawing from the grid.
Solar batteries with EPS (Emergency Power Supply) capabilities are also good insurance against grid power outs. If you own an off-grid solar system, solar batteries become even more crucial, in case of emergency power needs.
Replace outdated devices with ‘greener’ versions
Your old refrigerator, clothes dryer, and dishwashers may be using far more energy than necessary. An option is to replace them with modern, more energy-saving versions. Simply upgrading to newer models of the devices you use every day can lead to hundreds in utility savings. This even applies to entertainment devices, such as home theatre audio systems and televisions.
The savings don’t end there. Combine newer, energy-saving dishwashers and clothes dryers with timers for daytime usage, and you’re getting much more bang for your solar buck.
Solar pump water heaters are yet another cost-and energy-saving measure, as they can spare up to 90% of the cost of conventional heating systems.
Design your home with ‘passive solar energy’ in mind
If you’re early in the process of building your own home, you have an amazing advantage: you can design your house around passive solar design principles. This means that your home will be set up for more comfortable temperatures, no matter the season. As a result, you won’t pay as much for heating and cooling.
For one, northward-facing orientation is ideal, this helps rooftop solar panels receive more direct sunlight and allows more of the sun’s warmth to enter your home from the front. By building with double-glazed windows and high thermal mass materials like brick and concrete, you can retain even more warmth.
A solar energy system is a big investment, but it’s one that can improve your financial picture in the long run. The main thing is to be solar-smart and save as much energy as possible. By implementing some of these power efficiency tips we’ve shared, your solar system can change the game for your family’s financial outlook.