5 Ways to Power Your Eco-Friendly Home with Renewable Energy
For the past few decades, environmentalists have been warning about rapid depletion of natural fuel resources, and it seems homeowners around the world are finally waking up to the need for a mass switch to renewable energy. Back in 2016, renewable energy accounted for nearly 40% of the growth in global power generation, and it’s likely that the popularity of alternative fuel will only continue to increase in the years to come as green energy is good for both the planet and homeowners’ budget.
Still, how do you pick the right eco-friendly energy source for your home, and what options do you have at your disposal when it comes to green power?
1. Wind turbines
If your home is on the spacious side and requires a lot of energy for everyday maintenance and activities, a small-scale wind turbine might be your best bet when it comes to green power. Still, you should do the math before installing the turbine on your property to make sure the move is justified from the point of profitability.
As a rule, a home wind turbine can take years to pay off depending on wind intensity in the area, so you should double-check the figures if you want to avoid losing a small fortune to the green energy upgrade. On top of that, even a modestly-sized wind turbine takes up quite a bit of space and it can be noisy when running, which makes it an unpopular eco-energy choice for residential areas. On the plus side, installing a wind turbine will allow you to easily generate enough energy to cover most of your household’s needs, so it can be a smarter renewable investment than going solar.
2. Solar panels
In case your home’s energy needs don’t exceed the norm, switching to solar power is by far the best option. By installing a few solar panels in the yard or dressing your roof with solar shingles, you can harness all the green power your household needs for everyday use, and perhaps even generate extra energy which you’ll then be able to store in solar batteries and save for later use or sell into the national grid.
The downside of using solar energy as the primary power source for your household is that your energy might go absent without official leave in seasons with little sunshine. For this reason, you should brace your household for less than sunny days by introducing a secondary energy source such as a wind turbine or a small hydropower plant. That way, your home will stay on the clean, green, and well-supplied side of the energy agenda come rain or shine.
Another alternative energy source available to crafty homeowners, hydro power is the next big hit which promises to revolutionize the way riverside households handle power supply. If your property sits on the bank of a river or stream, you can divert some or all of the water to flow through a turbine and generate energy to power your home. Unlike solar or wind power, hydropower is stable and continuous, so your home’s energy needs will be covered 24/7 regardless of weather changes.
On top of that, energy experts say that hydropower generators can produce up to 10-100 times more power than standard solar panels or wind turbines for the same capital investment, which makes them a go-to for homeowners who live within two kilometers from a watercourse such as river or stream. Still, know that you should hire professionals to install the generator as the process requires solid technical knowledge.
4. The Powerwall
Although not designed to serve as a standalone power supply system, the Powerwall holds huge potential to dial up your home’s green energy game by allowing you to store power generated by other eco-friendly means and use it whenever necessary. Combined with a solar panel, Tesla Powerwall can double as a renewable generator and can save you a lot of money down the road even if you don’t back it up using a secondary energy system.
A large rechargeable battery that can take in as many as several kilowatt-hours of electricity, the Powerwall can be programmed to charge itself directly from the grid at intervals of low electricity charges and discharge when the power price is high. If you want to hack peak savings and environmental benefits, however, you should consider pairing the Powerwall with an eco-friendly generator such as solar panels.
One of the more recent additions to the eco-friendly fuel lineup, biomass is made from organic waste such as scrap lumber, certain crop types, agricultural waste residue, sawdust, municipal solid waste, manure, and forest debris.
In addition to allowing you to reduce heating costs, use of biomass also entails lower greenhouse emission compared to conventional fossil fuel, and it’s also beneficial for the Earth as it helps manage forests and crops and do away with renewable organic waste which would otherwise end up in landfills or would have to be burnt in open fires.
In addition to environmental safety and cost efficiency, use of biomass also entails a lower need for use of foreign oil normally required for shipping fossil fuel from other parts of the world. Because of all these neat benefits, switching to biomass as primary fuel type will make a smart investment in the long run.
Going green with your home’s power supply is one of the smartest moves you can make today for your family’s well being, long-term savings, and brighter and safer future for the generations to come. There are many renewable energy sources out there which you can choose from, but in case you want to cut out hassle and planning from the equation, you can simply pick one of the fuel types listed above and call it a green-powered day. Ready to switch to renewable fuel? Ready, steady, go and make your lovely house feel like a true, warm home. Good luck and may the green light guide your way!
Will Sandford is a Sydney based wood architect, blogger and contributor on interior design and ecology blogs. Besides that, he is also interested in home improvement combined with green technology. In his spare time, Will enjoys surfing and rock climbing. He is currently working on his new website and is a regular contributor to smoothdecorator.com website.