Energy saving technologies have come a long way and are, nowadays, by no means inferior to the traditional energy producing methods. To find out how solar panels and wind turbines work in practice watch this video from The Energy Saving Trust.
Everyone’s talking about soaring energy costs, but here are some projects that will help you save money on your bills and cut your carbon footprint.
Solar panels might not be on every homeowners’ roof yet, but with increasing electricity bills and the general public’s will to ‘go green’ mentality, they are becoming more and more frequent.
During daylight you can use the generated electricity for free, however, at night you’ll still need to buy electricity as usual, as the solar panels don’t function in darkness.
The typical panel installation cost comes to between £4,500-£6,000 per kWp (kilowatt-peak is a measure of power output) and most homeowners need a system of 2-3 kWp to efficiently use their solar PV panels. You can expect to save as much as £300 per year on your bills by producing up to 40% of your household’s electricity.
Read more about the benefits of solar panels.
Underfloor heating doesn’t just work with stoned or tiled floors; wood, vinyl or even carpeted surfaces are also a possibility. Bear in mind that the carpeted surfaces, however, can be too thick, which means that the heat won’t rise as easily.
The temperature of a room can be kept at the same temperature level with underfloor heating, as it can with a traditional wall mounted radiators, but at 1-2 degrees lower, making underfloor heating more efficient and cheaper to run. Unlike radiators, which push heat up to the ceiling, underfloor heating produces a controllable climate and makes sure the heat is evenly distributed. As long as the rest of the house is well insulated, it’s a great energy saving solution.
Underfloor heating is costly to install and even though it can save you money in the long run, these savings, according to the EST (Energy Saving Trust), might only save £20 per year. But, every little helps when it comes to reducing your carbon footprint; when teamed with other energy saving initiatives the energy saving results can be signification.
Large blades are used to harness the wind; when the wind blows the blades are forced round, as the blades turn they drive a turbine which generates electricity. Wind turbines work best in a windy location; the more wind the more electricity will be produced.
If your small wind system is connected to the National Grid then you can make money by selling any generated electricity to an electricity supply company. Read more about selling your own energy. If your turbine isn’t connected to the national grid the unused electricity can be stored in a battery for times when there is no wind.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, in the UK we have 40% of Europe’s total wind energy!
A roof mounted microwind system costs about £2,000 to install and a larger mast mounted wind turbine between £15,000 and £24,000, plus VAT and installation. A 6kW turbine could generate around 10,000kWh per year which is equivalent to around 5.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. It can also generate income and savings of around £3,200 a year if attached to the national grid. A well-maintained turbine should last over 20 years.
Rain Water Recycling
This system captures rain water, filters it and then directs it to an area in the house where it is required: dishwater, toilet etc. This can help reduce your water bill and ease flooding.
An easy way to save water is to install a water butt, rain water can be stored and used for water requirements around the garden. By storing up water early in the year if there is a drought you will not be tempted to rely on your hose pipe.
If you want to go eco to help save on your energy bills and reduce your carbon footprint, first work out what projects suit you and your home best, then post your job on RatedPeople.com. We will put you in contact with up to 3 quality, local tradesmen who will quote for your work. Review their ratings online and select the right one for you. Now is the time to go green.