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Solar Power: An Alternative Energy Whose Time Has Come
By Kelly Gillis
So you're finally tired of those exorbitant electricity bills, or, you're catching onto a "greener" way of life. Either way, solar power may have many advantages for you and your home.

There are many obvious positives to using solar power. One is that solar power produces no waste. We all benefit when there are fewer pollutants in the air. The rays of the sun, which are the source of solar power are free, and, without doubt, the sun will rise each morning. In other words, solar power is an absolutely free and renewable energy source. Even local governments are jumping on the solar bandwagon. Perhaps you may have noticed in your local area your state highways using solar powered signs warning of roadwork.

There are initial high costs involved in outfitting your home for solar power but the savings realized over the years will quickly make up for the start-up costs.

The most popular way of harnessing solar power for most homeowners is through the use of solar panels. These solar panels are made up of what are called photovoltaic cells which are able to covert sunlight directly into electricity. These solar panels are placed on the roof of a building. The size of the solar panel is determined


by the amount of energy needed. The panels can easily be added onto if needs increase. Some new homes are now being built using these photovoltaic cells as roof tiles.

These solar panels are generally easy to install for most DIY'ers. They require virtually no maintenance, and will last for decades.

There are other ways to take advantage of the sun's energy. If you are building a new home and have solar power in mind talk with your architect. You can have your new home built facing the sun where it can take full advantage of the energy and warmth. Have large windows installed to take in as much light as possible, especially in winter months when the sun is lower in the sky. Plant trees that will shade your home in the hot summertime.

Some states offer their residents solar energy grants that will repay a portion of the costs associated with installation. These grants give homeowners incentives for solar water and photovoltaic systems, with some refunding up to $5,000.00. Check with your local energy administration bureau.
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This page was updated on Nov 2009 and is Copyright © 2003 by Global Com Consulting Inc.

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