As the demand for coal and oil increase, the availability of these sources of energy is decreasing rapidly. It is an unavoidable phenomenon actually, because coal and oil are both non-renewable sources of energy and thus they will keep on being depleted until none of it is left anymore. Solar energy has been man’s chief hope as an alternative source of energy for a long time now. Residential use of solar energy was earlier limited to residences that were too far from the nearest power supply unit, but it is no more the situation today. Rates are much cheaper these days if you want to install a residential solar energy setup than it was earlier because of new innovations in technology as well as government subsidies and incentives. It is not only the government that encourages installation of photovoltaic cells for household purposes, but even utility companies and local agencies provide residents with lucrative incentives. The government in certain states is also supporting the residents to sell the excess power that their residential solar power system is producing, to the local power companies for making some extra profit. This in turn has encouraged the populace to invest more money into solar projects as they can now also earn profits from their investment. If you live in a particularly sunny area, then you can not only save a lot of money in the long run by avoiding expensive power bills but also profit from selling the excess solar energy. Using solar energy at a residence not only saves or earns money, but it also helps to reduce the pressure on our depleting sources of non-renewable energy. Harvesting solar energy with the help of modern photovoltaic cells plays a big role in saving our planet as it does not create the amount of pollution burning fossil fuels for energy does. Solar roof shingles and opaque glass photovoltaic veneers are efficient ways to incorporate design into your home, as well as save money and energy. It will cost you a significant amount of money to install a full off-grid residential solar system ($15000 – $20000/kW) for your home, but as the years pass by without a single electricity bill, maintenance charge or a power cut, it might seem like a good investment. However, it might not be the best idea to depend on solar energy if you happen to be in a place where the sky is mostly cloudy, therefore check the climatic condition of your area and consult an expert before undertaking such an expensive project.
Apart from an array of photovoltaic cells that can supply a whole house with all its electricity needs, solar energy has smaller residential uses through solar powered household appliances like a solar water heater or a solar pool heater as well. In fact, solar pool heaters are the most popular solar powered item in the country. The popularity of solar pool heaters is largely due to the fact that conventional pool heaters use a lot of electricity to work and thus the electricity bills shoots up, while the solar heater manufactures the power it needs to work by converting sunlight on its own.
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