When looking at the usefulness of solar power, you have to consider how much power the appliances that you use will tax the system.
For example if you wish to use a solar powered generator to run your hot water, you really don’t have to put that much effort into figuring out that a couple of panels will do the trick. But if you want to run a window-type air conditioner or a 24-hour freezer, you would have to consider the possibility of adding more power.
Power-hungry appliances are not conducive to solar power. It can be accomplished, but it is best to rely on the power grid for your larger appliances. Then you can selectively pick the appliances that you want to use with solar power. This can be for only one room. For example in your bedroom you may have a couple of lamps, a television, and a fan. By looking at the amount of energy it takes for running those appliances and the amount of energy that can be produced by a certain number of solar panels, you can make a logical decision to purchase those panels for that use. The rest of the house could run off the grid. As you invest in solar panels, you can slowly convert more rooms to full solar energy.
One good thing about solar panels is that if your house does have an electrical failure due to a storm or high winds, you can go into your solar powered room. You would still be able to watch your television and have lights, without depending on the power grid since it does not supply the power needed for those comforts. Even if your power outage happens at night, the power collected and the solar batteries can run your appliances in the bedroom for several hours or more.
If you want to start converting your house over to solar energy, it is wise to start small unless you have a very big budget. The cost you initially put into a solar powered project will take a long time to turn around and become profitable. Since the Earth’s climate is changing, eventually the cost of power could override the cost of the initial set up of solar panels. The long term possibility has to be entered into the equation.
For the first project in converting your home over to solar power, you may want to look at just specific appliances instead of an entire room. Of course, when the power goes out your entertainment is virtually gone. You may want to just use your solar powered energy for your television, cable box, VCR or DVD, or other entertainment equipment. If nothing else, it would be useful in killing the time until the power grid comes back on.
If you are unsure about solar energy and solar power, start small. You can buy a solar panel for your portable devices. Even though this is not saving a great deal of money, it helps the planet when you’re not using the power grid to recharge batteries. You can even buy solar powered panels to power your Game Boy or handheld computer. A computer’s battery only lasts two to three hours on the average. If you’re away from a power supply, you could be sitting there with a dead box while you could be doing your work, surfing the internet, or dealing with your daily computer tasks.