Using Solar Power in Your Home

Residential solar power is becoming an attractive option for many people. They can harness the sun's energy to run different appliances and to heat their home. It is also earth-friendly and an economical way to bring power into your home. Using solar energy can help to cut your external power consumption by fifty to seventy percent. There are several different ways that you can use solar power in your home, which can include using solar panels and solar heat systems to generate electricity.

Once you have solar power implemented in your home you can use solar water heating to generate hot water and heat your home. There will be a collector mounted on an elevated area, such as the roof, and is used to absorb the thermal energy from the sun. Often times it magnifies the heat and stores the resulting hot water. This heat can be piped through radiators to warm the home or supply hot water. In addition to lowering your utility bills it can add value to your home if you decide to sell your home.

The main reason that many people use residential solar power is it helps to cut the costs of their utility bills. Depending on the type of solar system used, in approximately twelve years the solar panels can pay for themselves. The US Department of Energy hopes that by the year 2020 solar energy will become commonplace in homes. They also hope to see the normal consumption of energy cut by seventy percent at that time.

The solar electric panel is the technology used in solar power, which uses photons to generate the electricity. The solar electric panels, referred to as photovoltaic panels (PV), can be installed in a variety of ways such as:

  • Free standing rigid sheets 
  • Set into your roof 
  • Peel and stick laminates


How they are installed depends on your roof type. The energy that is captured is converted to electricity using a modified grid system. It has a meter installed that will read how much solar energy your home has used compared to the normal electricity used. The meter will then subtract the solar energy electricity used and what is left is then applied to your utility bill.

Most of the solar power systems that are used are also capable of storing some of the energy that they generate so if there is a surplus of energy it can be used at a later time. In addition to using the stored energy to generate hot water and heat rooms it can also supply electric to your other electronic devices and light your residence. The main expense of using solar energy is the cost of installation of the solar energy system and panels.