Homeowners are always looking for ways to cut energy costs, which explains why solar energy is gaining so much in popularity. If you’re planning a solar retrofit for your Greater Kansas City area home, you’ll first want to tackle a few key elements.
Analysis of your electricity load
First, you need to know your home’s electricity needs. Basically, you’re going to create a record of how much wattage is being used by everything that’s being powered in your home. This will provide you with the following information:
- Your solar system’s required size
- Daily and annual energy fluctuations
- Ways to lower your energy usage
The calculation involves multiplying the wattage of each powered appliance or use in your home by how many hours it’s being used on a daily basis. If you’re having trouble with this, consult a trusted HVAC technician.
Familiarize yourself with the local regulations related to solar energy systems. These regulations will cover such things as building codes, technology requirements, ordinances and easements. Once you know the basic codes and work with an HVAC technician to make sure everything meets these requirements, a city inspector will evaluate both your home and the system you want to install. The inspector is not there to shut you down, only to make sure that your solar retrofit is safe.
Connecting to the grid
When planning a solar retrofit, you’ll need to decide if you want to connect your system to your area’s power grid or utilize a stand-alone system. Most people will connect to the power grid, which should allow you to sell any surplus power back to the supplier, while benefiting from grid power when your solar system isn’t providing enough energy to power your home. If you live in a rural area or simply don’t want to be connected to the grid, a stand-alone unit is a great alternative. Be aware that each choice requires its own additional equipment.
For more expert advice when planning a solar retrofit, or for any questions related to home comfort, contact the professionals at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. We’ve been serving the Greater Kansas City area since 1983.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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