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Energy Efficient Appliances

Which appliances are most energy efficient and is the extra expense worth it?

Which appliances are most energy efficient and is the extra expense worth it?

A large number of household appliances available to be purchased in the United States are Energy STAR affirmed, which implies they utilize less energy than their ordinary, non-Energy STAR partners. Notwithstanding, Energy STAR machines frequently include a significant price premium, making numerous property holders to ponder: are the more productive appliances justified, and worth paying a premium?

The Energy STAR program was launched and maintained by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in 1992.

By and large, most of the resulting test comparisons were primarily positive. The amount of money you’ll save relies upon your power rates (from your power company) as well as the machines you’re hoping to change out, and also the incentives accessible for these new energy efficient items in your home or business.

Energy STAR appliances should lessen your electricity bills in the long term.

By and large, home machines – including clothes washers, humidifiers, dryers, dishwashing machines, refrigerators, freezers, and air purifiers –represent 20% of your home’s complete electricity bill. An Energy STAR apparatus will utilize somewhere in the range of ten to fifty percent less energy every year compared to its non-Energy STAR proficient counterpart.

By replacing the appliances you have in your home with Energy STAR certified machines, you are embarking on a long term investment decision that will lessen your utility bill which is particularly imperative when you perceive that power rates are ever-increasing. It is also to be noted that a few machines utilize more energy compared to others. The sum you spare is likewise reliant on how long you have been using your appliance and the power rates which you are paying.

Clothes Dryers

Dryers are one of the most energy-hungry appliances you’ll find in the normal American home. As per the NRDC, a run of the mill dryer can expend as much energy every year as a clothes washer and dishwasher combined and peradventure you have a more seasoned model, the number can turn out to be significantly higher. Energy STAR dryers utilize 20% less power than a customary model and will spare you approximately $210 in electricity bills through the lifetime of your dryer.

Washers

Peradventure you combine your energy efficient dryer with a energy proficient clothes washer; you’ll see extra reserve funds on your electricity bill as well as your water bills. An Energy STAR guaranteed garments washer utilizes forty to fifty percent less energy and around 55% less water when compared to standard washers.

If you replace your regular clothes washer with a energy effective model, it is possible for you to set aside to $50 every year on your water and utility bills. Energy proficient front-loading garments washers likewise require less clothing cleanser compared to top-loading garment washers, thereby enabling you to spare more cash weekly on detergents.

Refrigerators

There had been huge advances in cooler innovation in the course of recent years, which implies that old fridges are one of the greatest energy hoards in numerous U.S. homes. The Energy STAR affirmed freezers that are available in the market today are almost 10% more energy effective compared to other models which meet the government least energy standard. Peradventure you have a more seasoned fridge, you can spare considerably more on your energy bills with a energy proficient freezer, Energy STAR qualified freezers utilizes about 40% less energy than the traditional models that were sold in 2001.

Dishwashing machines

Dishwashing machines may not utilize the same amount of power as a continually running fridge or even a high-heat garment dryer, yet the power and water which is expected to operate a dishwasher add up. Energy STAR ensured dishwashing machines are 12% more proficient than non-guaranteed models as of now available to be purchased, and using an energy-efficient dishwasher will spare you approximately $25 per year.

Energy proficient machine discounts can build your investment funds

While energy proficient machines can include some significant price premium, they’ll spare you cash on the long run by lessening your power bills. By and large, there are additional states, nearby, or utility discounts that will lessen your daily costs. Also, in case you’re disposing of a more seasoned apparatus, you might be given a discount for reusing it.

When would it be advisable for you to put resources into top energy efficient machines?

When you change out the apparatuses in your apartment with energy proficient upgrades, then you can spare many dollars annually on your energy bill. The reserve funds you accomplish from a solitary energy effective apparatus may appear to be little without anyone else, yet your home machines will keep going for somewhere in the range of 10 to even 20 years, those little months to month investment funds will become very significant with time, and mostly, the value premium you will pay will be quite more than counterbalanced by your energy investment funds.

That being stated, the measure of cash you’ll spare with energy effectiveness measures is subject to the amount you’re willing to contribute. For instance, you can spare a couple of dollars from your bills by using LEDs in the place of glowing lights, but just in case you want to significantly reduce your bills, you’ll need to change out the machines and systems that utilize the most energy.

Considerably more noteworthy returns: introducing sunlight based board system

While energy proficiency measures will help protect your house against increasing power costs, you can make it a stride further by introducing sun powered panels on your properties to produce your own perfect power. When you decide to “go sunlight based,” you guarantee that your power rates will stay stable throughout a period of 20 or more years. The expense of introducing solarhas decreased by in excess of 50 percent in the course of recent years, which implies your sun powered investment funds are more than any time in recent memory.The national governments as of now set gauge proficiency principles for appliances available to be purchased in the U.S., which implies that no products available in the market are “wasteful.” Energy STAR ensured machines, notwithstanding, are more effective than the regular models accessible available to be purchased. Your general profit now depends on the efficiency of your present appliances which is to a great extent the function of how long you have been using it. You’ll see progressively extreme investment funds when you change out your more established ordinary machines with energy effective choices, as opposed to change outing a more current apparatus.

Reasons Why Time-Of-Use Pricing Method Will Increase Your Electricity Dues

Decades ago, electricity bills were easier to interpret. This was done by obtaining the magnitude of current used, multiplied by the prevailing cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh), in addition to other non-specific charges stress-free.

Recently, power companies like PG&E have made moves on changing the method of payment for electricity.  The costs of electricity production are higher when demand is high compared to times when demand is low. Take for instance, when most people leave their houses for work, there is low usage and electricity is cheaper than when they come back from work and switch on electrical gadgets. At these times, there is pressure on PG&E to produce more electricity thereby leading to increased energy costs.

This pattern has been seen repeatedly in California. Last year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration wrote an article stating how California’s energy costs have been on the rise yearly during times of increased demand per day.

An Hourly Breakdown of California’s Energy Price

The cost of electricity from 8 PM in 2016 per megawatt-hour was $35which increased to $60 in the subsequent year partly due to the high reliance of its energy companies on redeemable sources of energy like solar power. Of course, there was an obvious decrease in its production cost during times of low demand.

The major concern now is the mode of transformation of the energy market since putting more energy to use as at the time needed is costlier, thereby resulting in rapid increase in prices at both the early and late hours of the day; except for institutions who remit a constant price for electricity since there’s no way electricity providers can recover the costs incurred in rendering electrical services in times of very high demand excluding the general cost of electricity.

Hence, the reason core California power companies are currently introducing a new pricing method for electricity named “Time-of-Use”.

Energy Prices – Time-of-Use Pricing

Time-of-Use Pricing simply means you are charged according to when you utilize power either at home or for business.

Time-Of-Use (TOU) pricing segments hours of the day, with each time frame differing according to dead periods. As of April 2018, PG&E mapped out its plan (applying E-TOU-A) thus:

This may look easy but for the fact that there is a slight change of plan from June to September, with a reduced rate of $0.32 and a high rate of $0.40, while between October and May, the reduced rate is $0.27 when the inflated rate is $0.28. So, seasonal variations also determine prices PG&E customers pay.

The majority of energy users are often faced with the sudden inflated bills of the time-of-use pricing method.

High costs of TOU pricing compared to the traditional or basic method is the main concern. Looking at the basic plan, for instance, the normal prevailing price is $0.21 per kWh, which is lesser than the lowest pricing TOU rate by 6 cents and summertime high rates by 11 cents.

Energy users should be ready for a costlier and flexible pricing system as the time-of-use method is now the standard being set (by PG&E as from 2020).

PG&E is now using TOU instead of the traditional rate. Just like every other working class individual, the house owner is absent from home during early bright hours of the day and comes home every evening except for weekends. This means 70% or 700kWh of energy consumed in May during zenith costs periods (3am-8pm on workdays) and 30% or 300kWh during idle days.

Considering this, their bill would amount to $377 this May which reflects an increase of 78% more than the amount usually paid using the previous pricing system. This should show you a glimpse of what residents in California will experience when TOU is standardized.

The news is that these high costs are just going to increase. House owners have overlooked the fact that the difference between the zenith and off-zenith costs has been on the increase in the last ten years. As PG&E is implementing the TOU pricing in recent years, analyses of PG&E pricing rates have shown that there is an increasing gap between zenith and off-zenith costs. Between June and July 2013 during summer, commercial zenith and off-zenith costs recorded a difference of 3 cents; during the same time in 2014, it became 3.5 cents. Recently, the difference is over 5 cents.

The pattern is very obvious. With the passage of time, the probability of an increase in the difference between zenith and off-zenith costs is high. Energy will become more unaffordable as at the times itis most needed.

California residents and the entire United States will now have to adjust their ways of life to a larger extent so as to put up with this experience. The way you use your electrical equipment at home will be greatly reduced so as to conserve energy. Otherwise, you would have no choice than to pay up the charges.

Increasing Energy Prices – Is There Another Way Out?

A rising proportion of California house owners have started installing solar power systems on their rooftops so as to relinquish dependence on local power utilities. Following the uncontrollable increase in energy prices, the period at which the calculated cost of obtaining a system will be at par with current electrical charges is rapidly approaching.

It is currently calculated that a typical house owner can save enough money (meant for electrical bills) to buy a solar power system between 5 to 7 years, determined by usage and normal charges. Energy prices are on the high side and increasing daily. Therefore, the above stipulated time frame is expected to decrease. This is why we advise house owners to consider installing solar power. This way, you are exempted from financial pains.

Lastly, we suggest storage batteries for a more dynamic and efficient system for both new and old methods which in turn increases your savings.

What is The Difference Between Micro-Inverters and String Inverters?

  • What is a Micro-Inverter – a micro-inverter can also be referred to as a solar micro inverter. It is a piece of electronic equipment used in PV cells for changing the waveform of current i.e. changing Direct current (DC) to Alternating current (AC).
  • What is a String Inverter? – String inverters can also be referred to as centralized inverters. It also converts Direct current (DC) to Alternating current (AC) but here the inverter is connected to a string of solar panels.

When a micro-inverter is better than string inverters

  • Easy to install and use
  1. You don’t need an expert to install it for you. Micro-inverters can be easily set-up by you thereby saving you the cost of paying experts to do it for you.
  2. It does not require any additional hardware or manual configuration. It is Plug-and-play for the most part.
  3. Micro-inverters are connected to an AC source carrying normal household voltages. Whereas, central inverters demands connecting multiple strings of thick DC wires from the solar panels to the central inverter through a tunnel.
  4. The installations of central-inverters demand 4-8 categories of high voltage DC wires which need to be connected correctly to the inverter.
  5. In the installations of string-inverters, the installer has to calculate line losses to determine the size of the wire that will be required to connect it to the panels. Also, the panels, central inverters, and the racking all require different grounding system.
  6. Even for the loading of the string-inverters, it requires that the person installing it design the system to be able to load balance each strand of panels.
  7. In a central-inverter, when a panel malfunctions, it is going to be hard to determine which panel exactly in the system is malfunctioning without testing each one of them with a micrometer.
  • Effectiveness
  1. Micro-inverters make the best use of the power output of each individual panel resulting in an additional power of 15% per panel.
  2. Central inverters will not function as it should if there is any shading whereas a micro inverter system will function optimally.
  3. If a panel malfunction in a micro-inverter system, it will not affect the whole system and the exact panel that is malfunctioning can be easily determined.
  • Safety
  1. Micro-inverters are safe to use, unlike string-inverters which expose the person installing it to hundreds of volts of unsafe DC power while micro-inverters do not.
  2. Micro-inverters are safe to handle as they do not produce power when they are not connected to your solar panels. On the other hand, a string inverter needs to be handled safely because they produce power as soon the panels are exposed to light.
  3. A string inverter can be wired incorrectly in a lot of ways which could lead to severe damage or even kill the installer.
  4. There is no way a micro inverter can be wired incorrectly because it is plug-and-play.
  • Durability and Cost Effectiveness.
  1. Micro-inverters last for a very long time having an average lifespan of about 32 years and also a longer warranty of 25 years whereas central inverters have a shorter lifespan and a shorter warranty period of 10-12 years.
  2. The cost of maintenance for a string inverter can be more as it will need replacement in 10-15 years.

Is Switching to Solar Panels The Way to Go?

Most solar companies have different ways of promoting their products, such as “do you know that having a solar panel can help you save lots of money?” They make it look really light, truth be told, if solar is a relatively long time investment for you it relies on some major agents. Before jumping at the opportunity, we advise that you try making use of the simple guide and make your way through the sales pitch and know if the solar panels are really worth spending your money on.

Determining if solar is worth it

When going through the solar choices, here are some questions you can ask to ascertain if solar is the way forward for you, including:

What is the cost of your electricity bill?

The present state of your electricity bill is a major determinant of the amount you can save by installing solar. You pay the bill per unit of the electricity you make use of and the amount usually differs based on the part of the country you live in. In some sections of the country, electricity bill can be as low as 8 cents per kWh; while some you could as much as 20 cents or higher.

When going solar, you install a small power plant on the roof of your house to substitute the main source of your electricity. Therefore, it means that homeowners with large utility bill will opt for solar installation which helps them save more.

What is the cost of the solar panel system?

Installation of solar does vary depending on the solar company of your choice and the type of equipment you install. Though cheap solar panels could seem worth it for 20-years savings not to be a waste it is best you invest in quality equipment even though it might seem more expensive. It best you take your time and review all the equipment and the prices to determine which suits you and your home best.

Also, remember to make inquiries about solar rewards and abatement available wherever you stay. They can cut the price by 50% or even more. The federal government normally offers about 30% solar tax discount and most states and cities have some added financial advantage for the citizens. Some companies help customers go solar by giving them financial aids.

How do you intend to finance the solar panel system?

solar panel system

Whether you decide to buy or rent your solar system for long-term use, the best means of purchase still remains by cash. It will help save cost even though the money needed will till run in tens of thousands. While solar leases and the power-purchase agreement does not need down payment of cash and it comes along other solar benefits of free maintenance and trade-off; the amount needed could just be about 10-30%of the utility bill of electricity. How workable is this in the real world.

What is the essence of having a solar panel when one is not staying in the sunny Southwest?

Though solar panels enjoy sunlight, you will be amazed to realize that you don’t have to be based in sunny Southwest to enable you to save. Most of the states like New York, Massachusetts, and New Jersey is known for the cold which is in the Northeast of the country tend to make use of solar panels more because the rate of the electricity bill is high and there are available for them.