How Does Solar Power Help the Environment?
Using solar power instead of electricity is new, improved and definitely encouraged. Newer buildings are often equipped with solar power, but how many people know exactly what solar power does, and how it helps our world?
Solar power is commonly used to reduce carbon emissions and greenhouse gas buildup caused by electricity created using oil and coal. While we constantly depend on electricity to make it through life’s daily functions, these actions require a ton of fossil fuels which are slowly diminishing. Solar power uses the sun’s energy to create power instead. This is helpful for the environment since we know the sun isn’t doing a disappearing act anytime in the near future.
To collect solar power and use it to generate the electricity we rely on from day to day, changes have to be made. One common option is to install photovoltaic panels. These panels absorb the sunlight and then create useable energy. The other option is called Concentrated Solar Power, which uses lenses and mirrors to focus large areas of sun into a small beam, this is commonly utilized for businesses.
Facts about solar power:
- A majority of the solar panels in the world have been installed within the past 2 ½ years. The growth of solar us is tremendous!
- The cost of solar panels is falling, making it more affordable for installation in homes and businesses.
- Although there are some initial start-up costs for home solar usage, over time the savings outweighs the original spend.
- In 2013, California was the most solar powered state.
Eco Electric can provide information on solar power options and take care of the installation as well. Contact Eco Electric to start using solar power!
Eco Friendly Summer Tips:
It’s not hard to see or feel that summer is here. The temperature is rising, with no sign of it falling anytime soon. A rising temperature also means a rising electricity bill. You may not know it, but there are many simple ways to become more eco-friendly and save some money this summer.
When the heat starts rising, people immediately turn to the air conditioner to cool off. There are many ways to reduce the use of the air conditioner, save some money in your wallet, and still beat the heat.
- With summer comes sunshine! Take advantage of the sunshine and if you have solar panels installed, used them! Summer means an abundance of sunshine, resulting in free power for those with solar panels.
- Keep your house closed up in the day time, blocking out the sunlight can reduce the amount of heat being let inside.
- Open up the windows when it’s cool! Natural wind is not only a great cool down, but it’s free!
- Ceiling fans are great for summer! The fans will also help increase a thermostat setting.
- Make sure your air conditioner is working properly, maintained and also properly sized for your house.
Dangers of Fluorescent lights:
Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) are popping up everywhere. They are replacing the old school common light bulb, but there are concerns that come with this replacement. The largest concern being, are CFLs really safe for our homes?
The largest health concern that CFL’s bring is the mercury content in each light bulb. The level of mercury in each bulb is dangerous to anyone. If one of these bulbs does happen to break then anyone around would be in contact with mercury. These light bulbs do require one to handle them carefully and use proper disposal. If broken only a small amount of the mercury is actually released. A study published in the Environmental Engineering Science Journal found that mercury vapors from a break would take weeks to reach levels that are hazardous to children. If a bulb does break you should seek immediate help from professionals and follow safe clean up tips.
Another concern that has been rumored is that CFL bulbs can cause ultra violet radiation. This was once a concern, but research has found that for this to happen there has to be a defect occurring during manufacturing or shipping. To experience ultra violet radiation you would have to stand extremely close to the bulb. To avoid any possible radiation avoid standing less than two feet away from the bulb, and avoid staring directly into the bulb.
Simple precautions can be used to avoid any health hazards from CFLs. If you do use CFLs in your home please make sure you are disposing of them properly. Eco Electric specializes in CFL disposal. They collect the bulbs and personally make sure they are disposed of properly to avoid any mercury being accidently released into the earth.
Benefits of Professionally Cooling Bonus Rooms:
Do you have a room in your house that is only used occasionally? Maybe this is a guest bedroom, an office, or a bonus room. These rooms are still used frequently enough that you must keep them cool, but it’s too expensive to cool them as you do the rest of your house. Don’t be afraid. There are other methods to keep your house cool rather than using the AC, and Eco Electric can help you this summer.
One of the best ways to keep a room cool without using the AC is by installing a ceiling fan. The air movement within the room will help the room feel cooler. These fans can be easily installed and are fairly inexpensive. Newer fans come with a remote, which will make it possible to control the rate of the fan, and how dim the lighting is.
A programmable thermostat is another option. This will help keep the unused rooms or your whole house cooled at specific times. There is no reason to heat or cool a house during the day time while no one is home. With a programmable thermostat, you set the furnace to run at certain times of the day. The furnace can start up right before you get home, and turn off before you leave in the morning.
Finally, one other option is to install a powered attic ventilation system. The heat that collects in the attic effects the heat in the upper levels of your house. Especially if you have a bonus room upstairs, you can guarantee it is going to be warm in there. The heat in the attic will just rest there effecting the whole house because usually there isn’t a large ventilation system in attics. The ventilator will help keep the attic cooler, resulting in a cooler house.
These are just a few of the many different options available to cool unused rooms. To learn more about adding one of these systems in your own home, contact the certified electricians at Eco Electric.