Solar Power – Innovative Way of Promoting the Future of Solar Power For Homes by Chris Hartley

San Francisco is the city where going green is developing into a lifestyle and is fast becoming a world leader in the use of solar power and is involved in a number of political and policy moves to promote the development of green technology. Together the Bay Area and San Francisco has come up with an innovative way of promoting the future of solar power for homes

Throughout the area solar panels are visible on thousands of rooftops, supplying power to some major landmarks and soon the famous Alcatraz Island will join the exclusive group.

As of this month homeowners can get loans from the city to cover the cost of installing solar power systems in their homes, repayments are made easy because the city facilitates the repayments through increased property taxes. This removes the single biggest deterrent for most homeowners that of the up-front costs of retail installation of solar power systems, which can be considerable at current rates of around $20,000 for the average home.

These loans range from a minimum of $5,000 to a maximum of $50,000 or 10% of the homes value whichever is less. The payback period is up to 20 years and the loan is tied to the property and not to the individual so when the house is sold the balance of the loan is passed on to the new owner.

Pressure should now be put on other cities and States to follow this Green trend as San Francisco demonstrates the future for solar power for homes.

Until the rest of the country catches up with the enlightened policies of the San Francisco and the Bay Area, then the practical way to get solar power for the rest of us is to look into the wide range of solar power kits available. This will allow you to build your own solar panels at a fraction of retail, with these kits you will be able to make a start on your own solar system by constructing your first solar panel for around $100. The kits will show you how to design, construct, install and hook up you solar panels, to give you a viable source of energy with all the advantages that it offers by way of cheap power.

Although it may be a while before such grants are available to the rest of us, we can all claim Alternative Energy rebates on any property owner that installs alternative energy systems in their property, which will offset some of the cost of installation.

These kits also offer the small entrepreneur an opportunity to grow their own Green Business by using the knowledge they get through the instruction manuals and videos in the kits, and the practical experience gained through the construction of their own solar energy system. The increased public awareness and interest in using solar power in their homes, will surely lead to an increase in the demand for Green businesses to install solar systems, and follow the lead set by San Francisco with its innovative way of promoting the future of solar power for homes

About The Author

Chris R Hartley is an advocate for Green Energy Solutions and and affiliate for green products More Green information.If you look at my site you will find advice on many green DIY energy products.

Aeration System Considerations

If you are considering purchasing a Lake Diffuser or Pond Diffuser aeration system to alleviate weeds, bacteria, and other pollutants from your body of water, you may be curious about the solar and windmill generated aeration systems on the market. They seem so environmentally friendly, and require only the initial installation cost, but are they right for your pond or lake, and will they do the job?

Electrical Aeration System – Recommended

Hands down, the electrical aeration system will achieve consistent quality results every time; cost effectively, with easy installation, a hidden compressor which will not impede the view, and very easy maintenance. Let’s explore the reasons for this statement.

Windmill Aeration System

How effective is a windmill aeration system in circulating the critical oxygen needed to restore a pond full of muck or thick algae? The typical windmill aeration system runs only 7 hours a day, with battery backup handling the remaining 17 hours necessary for proper aeration. However, the wind does not blow every day, so the windmill must be capable of storing and dispensing the necessary power for several days. Obviously batteries to supply all this power will be costly. A windmill large enough to supply the necessary power over a two-day period, using battery storage is extremely large, and extremely expensive.

Even when the wind is blowing and the mill is working to send vital oxygen up from the bottom of the pond, it is still not as efficient as an electrical pump. Some windmills create a blast of air on every full-turn of the fan and others send air on every half turn. Calculating the actual output is not easy because the wind is constantly changing, but regardless, the mill will not provide a constant flow of bubbles.

The windmill aeration system tower must be strong enough to withstand severe winds and be anchored securely into the ground so that it does not blow away. This usually requires a 20’ – 25’ tall windmill and at least a 10’ by 10’ slab of concrete to anchor it on. Most windmills have a fan diameter from 65 to 72 inches. Almost all windmills have 12 fan blades. Many windmill aeration system manufacturers say that the mill will operate with as little as 5 mph winds, but this is rarely the case. The resulting structure next to the pond can look similar to the eyesore of a cell phone tower.

Installing the windmill aeration system can be very complex and require several days. The final cost in time alone can make it a better deal to hire the experts to build and install the system. In addition, the diaphragm on the windmill aeration system will require maintenance after a few years of service requiring that the windmill tower be lowered to be able to open and adjust the windmill head to replace the diaphragm.

Windmill aeration systems do supply more power than solar systems, but since a typical solar power aeration system generates less than 5 PSI they really are not an alternative to either a windmill or an electric aeration system.

Sometimes the cost of the windmill aeration system may make it seem like the best deal. Remember that the best deal isn’t always the cheapest. You can probably save a lot of money by buying a windmill aerator system on eBay, but you won’t get any customer support when things go wrong.

Solar Aeration System

Typical costs of solar cells (not counting cost of batteries & converters) needed to provide 30 kW-hrs per day or 1.68 hp (typical use by an American family) is about 14 cents per kW-hr over a 20 year useful life of the cells. We get no more than 5 hrs of effective sunlight a day here in Pennsylvania. In areas like Arizona, you can do a little better. An aeration system must be operated twenty-four hours a day to be effective, so a large bank of storage batteries is necessary, along with converters necessary to change low voltage DC to 120 volt ac power.

You may consider solar power a good enough trade for clean, “free” energy. To do that, you’d have to come up with about $30, 000 (plus installation costs) up front, instead of paying the electric bill monthly over 20 years. And a large, often unsightly surface area for the solar cells is required.

About The Author

Bob Laing is an engineer with more than 30 years of experience in aeration system design, improvements & Pond weeds control with aeration systems. He is currently a consultant for CLEAN-FLO, a leader in pond and lake aeration systems.

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