Everyone is talking about solar energy and solar power these days. With power prices increasing, more people are interested in saving the planet and putting a cap on climate change. So what can YOU do to help?
If you are looking for ways to create a more sustainable living environment, solar panels are undoubtedly one of the best methods.
They can save on your overall utility costs and you can get the best efficiency possible, but when it comes to solar panels you’ve got to look after them properly. So what does it really take to ensure that you get the most out of solar energy for your home?
Purchase a Battery
If you do not have one already, purchasing a battery for an existing solar system is a great way to store any excess energy so you can maximise the energy for as long as possible. When you have a dedicated battery system, you will have a reserve of solar energy, even if you are not getting much sunshine at the moment. While many people are reaping the benefits of solar panels, of course, if the sun doesn’t shine, you’re not getting the best bang for your buck. Batteries are a great way to store that additional energy so you can power your home at night, saving even more money.
Clean the Panels
It’s something we don’t necessarily consider, but you will need to clean your solar panels once in a while so they are operating more efficiently. Over time, dust, dirt, and debris will land on the panels and this over time can slowly reduce its performance by up to 7%. If you are cleaning your solar panels, make sure you use a good-quality soft brush with bristles that can get rid of any dirt and grime without damaging the panels. You should also get a squeegee with a plastic blade and a cloth-covered sponge attached.
Keep Track Of Your Energy Usage
There are so many different ways that you can monitor your energy consumption around the home, and when you are doing this, you can identify any periods of time where your energy use is particularly high so you can adjust your habits. You can also use apps to link to your solar panels so you can take advantage of any excess energy, especially if you are running several appliances at once.
One of the best ways to maximise your panel solar energy is to run one appliance at a time, but if you can keep an eye on those periods of time where you’re getting that little bit more excess energy, this is when you can truly use it to your advantage.
Keep An Eye On Shaded Areas
If your solar panel is not absorbing as much energy as it usually does and the weather has been blisteringly bright, you need to check if there have been any shaded areas forming on your solar panels recently. For example, if your property has trees, they could have easily grown to shade part of your solar panels, and you can hire a company to trim those tree branches so you can get the full benefit. But if something is blocking the light that you can’t remove, like a building, you can use a microinverter to optimise the energy output from these areas.
Make Changes To Your Appliances
Having energy-efficient appliances will make the biggest difference when it comes to your solar energy. Modern appliances are far more energy-efficient and can be up to 20% more effective than older appliances. As modern appliances come with eco settings, you can really dial in your energy consumption.
When you upgrade the appliances, you are putting less strain on your solar panels, and you can benefit in so many ways. You’ve got to think that older appliances are more costly in every single way, despite those old items potentially being better than newer models because they’ve lasted the test of time.
If you cannot bear to part with your age-old washing machine or refrigerator, you’ve got to make other upgrades to your home to offset the balance, for example, using smart light bulbs.
Continually Monitor Your Energy Consumption
The one true way to get the most out of your solar panels is to ensure that it is working for you. Monitoring allows you to see if there’s any excess electricity being exported to the grid so you can switch appliances to make more use of the free generated energy, and this means that if you are giving energy back to your supplier, you can reduce this in a number of ways and help you understand how much power you really use.
Solar energy is certainly an amazing tool, but you’ve got to use it wisely.