We all know that our home's most significant expenses are the energy cost that we faces on a monthly basis. Thankfully, there are numerous ways to reduce both your carbon footprint and your recurring energy costs. Many of them are simple and common sense techniques that do not require major changes, construction, installation, or upfront expenses.
Here's the 8 Green Technology For Your Homes:
1. Solar Array
Solar panels, or photovoltaic cells, are one of the best ways to reduce pollution and lower your electricity expenses. The average cost of installation for the typical solar array comes in at around $30,000, before green energy tax credits, rebates, and incentives, which help you recoup much of the initial expense.
2. Solar Water Heater
It’s not always necessary to install a complete solar array to achieve some of the benefits of solar technology. Installing a solar water heater can be a great way to cut down on energy costs at a much lower initial expense. The costs associated with the installation of a solar water heater are actually recouped much faster than the costs associated with photovoltaic technology for power generation. This is due to the increased efficiency of solar water heating systems, as well as their reduced expense when compared to the large solar array required for powering a home.
3. Wind Generator
When you think of wind generators, the first thing that comes to mind is likely the huge windmill farms found offshore and in the windswept plains of the western United States. But did you know that you can actually purchase smaller versions of these massive power generators?
The costs of a home wind generator vary greatly. Some have built their own wind generators with off-the-shelf parts from their local hardware stores. Others have purchased kits or paid for professional installation to supplement the power purchased from their local electrical grid.
4, Rainwater Harvesting System
Rain collector systems are extremely simple mechanical systems that connect to a gutter system or other rooftop water collection network and store rain water in a barrel or cistern for later non-potable use (like watering plants, flushing toilets, and irrigation). These systems are extremely inexpensive, provided you purchase and assemble the rain collection equipment yourself. If you pay a contractor to install the rain collection system, it could cost you anywhere from several hundred dollars and up.
5. Energy Monitor
One of the easiest things you can do to decrease energy consumption around the house is to install an energy monitor. Household energy monitors are easy to use and inexpensive, and allow you to see a minute by minute presentation of your energy use. These devices work by clipping onto the power cable coming in to your home and transmitting a wireless signal to a display that shows precisely the amount of power being consumed. In studies conducted in the British Isles, households with energy monitors saved between 10 to 15% annually by instituting the simple and inexpensive device.
6. Smart Power Strips
Smart power strips are a simple and elegant solution to a major energy problem. Energy vampires are generally blamed for around 20% of all energy wasted in America annually. Smart power strips sense energy demand and cut off power supply to fully charged or not in use devices, and can almost eliminate vampire power draw down.
7. Double Pane Windows
Like poor insulation, energy escape due to single pane or inadequately sealed windows contributes a great deal to energy loss annually. In fact, 25% of annual heating and cooling costs can be attributed to the installation of non-energy efficient or single pane windows.
Double pane windows are not cheap, and outfitting your entire house with new double pane windows will cost a great deal of money and inconvenience as it is a fairly major construction project. Estimated costs per window are around $600, but when you consider that replacing all of your home’s windows with double paned glass could save you up to $500 a year, you will certainly see how double pane windows can be a solid investment.
8. Insulate your House
Based on EPA estimates, 10% of household energy usage or around $200 a year is due to energy loss from poor insulation. As a do-it-yourself project or a project for your local contractor, you will get an excellent return on investment from sealing your home to prevent energy escape.