Thinking about upgrading your home? These days, what can you do to make sure you will get a great return in your investment? One very interesting option that most people don’t consider is installing a renewable energy system in their home. In past years, this really was not an option because of the expense versus rate of return, but things have definitely changed in recent years.
Consider this: previously a homeowner’s only option was to hire a professional (commercial) company to install a solar panel system or wind power system. However huge advancements have been made renewable technologies themselves and now it has become not only affordable, but easy to upgrade your home’s energy supply to using renewable sources.
Building solar panels used to be a daunting task, but not anymore. For approximately $100-200, you can easily build an entire solar panel and connect it to a series of batteries so your home can use that energy when it needs it. The average home will only require about 10 panels to supply most of its power, so what used to cost $20,000 for a professional installation now only costs about $2,000 for anyone who can follow a plan and some videos.
For some people, a diy energy project may be a frightening proposition, but it doesn’t have to be. In the past, you would need to refer to Popular Mechanics and figure out schematics, voltage, etc. and, I don’t know about you, but that ‘technical’ stuff never really appealed to me. These days you can get a step-by-step plan complete with how-to videos to follow along so that even a novice do-it-yourself enthusiast can build a solar panel and/or wind generator depending on your home’s location and energy needs.
Most diy plan guides that include how-to step-by-step videos can easily be found online. But beware, not all renewable energy diy project guides are created equal. Like anything else, there are good and bad guides out there. Here is a short list of things to look for when you decide to start your own project using a plan guide for either solar or wind projects, or both:
1. Make sure the guide gives you a list of tools, parts, accessories and any special equipment required for your project (nothing worse than getting half-way through to find out you don’t have a required item)
2. Get a guide that has easy to follow, clear instructions with pictures and videos. How to videos can save you hours of frustration if you get stuck.
3. A really good guide will have unlimited support so you can send an email or make a phone call to get help along the way.
4. Look for project guides that give you background information along with how-to information. This can come in handy because a little knowledge can go a long way when planning your project specific to your home’s needs.
5. Before you purchase any guide, be certain that you will be able to return the guide if you are not satisfied with the contents. A good guide will have a money back guarantee with at least 30 days (60 days is preferable) so that you have time to evaluate it before deciding to use it.
Once you are armed with the right plans and videos, you can start gathering the parts and tools that you will need. Most often the tools are already in your garage or tool closet, and only a couple of specialty items are usually needed, like a soldering iron to join solar cells, etc.
A diy solar panel project can take a weekend to install or a few weeks, depending on how many panels you want to put up and how much time you have to spend during the weekend. In general, making a homemade wind generator will take less time and often one weekend after assembling the parts is all it takes.
Think about this: Would you rather move into a home that has a renewable energy source or one that relies solely on the local power company? Which do you think will give you more freedom and more money in the future? A small investment in a guide, a few supplies, and a little effort on your part can go a long way and before you know it, you will have the freedom of a renewable energy source, reduced power bills right away, and a home improvement that adds real value to your property.