Have you thought about using solar power in your home? If not, you could be missing out. Want to know why? Well, you can save some good money from your electricity bills.
Solar power reduces dependence on the national supply. No more blackouts or shutdowns when the electricity company is doing maintenance.
When shopping, go for the best-looking solar panels. And no, it is not about vanity. Do you know solar panels can increase the value of your home if you ever decide to sell? And, you will be doing your part in saving the environment. Solar energy is renewable and sustainable.
Maybe you are not quite ready to rig up your whole home to solar power just yet. But, since you have embraced remote working, your energy bills have gone up quite a bit.
If you are looking for a solution, please read on. We will share some tips for creating a solar-powered home office.
- WORK WITH PROFESSIONALS
Powering your house using solar energy requires some expert advice. Yes, there are tons of resources, both online and offline, you can use to educate yourself. YouTube is full of DIY solar panel installation tips. So, can you rig your home office yourself? Absolutely.
But, look at it this way. A good solar installation kit is not exactly cheap. You will also void any warranty if you mess up the job. And remember, there are factors you may not know when shopping for solar panels.
Yes, we did say above that you should buy the best-looking solar panels. But there is a lot more that goes into the process. It helps to know quality brands that will give you long-term usage. The experts will also advise on things like battery storage and positioning.
And that’s not all. Try shopping for solar kits and the process can be overwhelming. There are so many brands coming in at different price points. It is a good idea to let someone with the knowledge guide you.
Take your time to do your due diligence when looking for solar installers. Ensure the company has relevant certification, licensing, and proof of professionalism.
Read customer reviews and talk to some happy customers. A reputable company should not have an issue availing references. Also, ask questions about maintenance and warranty for the solar equipment.
- LEARN THE BASICS OF SOLAR POWER INSTALLATION
Take the time to learn the basics of solar power installation. It will make more sense for you when the experts talk about specific components or processes. Do you, for instance, know that wrong wiring can lead to fires or electric shocks?
Familiarize yourself with the different components. These include solar panels, mounting brackets, charge controllers, batteries, and inverters. Do not be shy about asking the consulting company questions. A little knowledge never hurt anybody.
- DETERMINE YOUR ENERGY NEEDS
It helps to know how much energy you will need to run your home office. Start by listing down any appliances that need power. You may have laptops, printers, a scanner, a fridge, and a coffee maker. Also consider other factors like lighting, heating, and air conditioning.
The requirements will depend on the type of work you do. Take the example of running a printing press. It will need more power than the basic office equipment we have listed above. The more energy you will need, the more panels you will buy.
The experts will calculate your power needs by taking into consideration all the appliances you will use in your home office.
- SOLAR PANEL PLACEMENT
Some factors will determine the solar panel placement. Let’s say your home office is in a building separate from the main house. You must consider the following.
- The direction of the roof – the more the orientation of the roof to the sun, the better.
- Shade from trees around the home office. Consider the different seasons, in winter the sun stays pretty low in the sky. The result is longer shadows which will block the sun from hitting the panels. The type of trees also matter. Take the Example of Evergreens that keep their leaves all year round.
- Surrounding infrastructure that could cast shadows on the roof.
- Roof angles and protrusions could interfere with the placement of panels.
The type of solar panels you buy matters. Some reduce output in low sunlight conditions. Others will go off. But the basic principle is the more direct sunlight, the higher efficiency you achieve in energy production.
Also, if you are planning any roof renovations, do them before installing the solar panels.
- COMPONENT PLACEMENT
Components placement is also critical. The experts may recommend putting the AC/DC inverter right next to the electric meter. The electricity in the panels is direct current (DC). It will need to convert to alternating current (AC) so that you can use it to power your office and appliances. The consulting company will ask for a site visit to determine the best placement.
A good solar kit should also come with a backup battery. It allows you to store energy during peak sunshine hours for use when you need it. You can save a lot by switching to the stored power in the evening or at night.
The solar installation professionals must adhere to building codes when placing the batteries. Some places do not allow for the mounting or installation of batteries in interior spaces. You may need to upgrade the structure first to accommodate them.
Do not ignore the permit requirements. It would be unfortunate to rig up your home office, only to have to bring it down due to noncompliance.
Solar power will save you money and is very dependable. You can run your home office without having to worry about blackouts or other power disruptions. The best piece of advice we can give is to let professionals handle the installation.
They have the expertise and in-depth knowledge to do the work. You also get advice on the best quality from the tons of options available.
But, this is not to say that you should not take an active part in the process. Do your due diligence before hiring professional solar installers. Check licensing, customer reviews and talk to a few references.
Also, educate yourself on the basics of solar power. There are tons of resources available online. The professionals should also be comfortable answering any questions you have.
Guest Contributor: Daniel Martin