My dad has two solar panels that he plans to install at his house. He’s a licensed electrician so it’ll be a relatively easy thing for him to do. I’d love to put a solar panel on the roof of my house to help save energy and money. However, solar panels are rather expensive and take time to install.
As with most technology, solar panels have transformed into small devices that you can use all over your home. To reap the benefits of solar energy on a more micro level, try a couple of these suggestions. Some are practical and others are just for decorative fun – but they won’t add extra watts to your energy bill.
I picked up a few of these at the local megastore around this time last year for a dollar apiece. These lights add a bit of decoration to the front of my house and they prevent me from tripping over my uneven sidewalk when I get home late. My parents have traditional sidewalk lights. I remember they had to dig a small trench to sink the electrical wire and then connect that to the correct circuit. For an electrician, this is pretty easy. But for the rest of us, it’s quite a task. I just stuck mine in the ground and walked away.
Many people have some kind of flood light attached to their house or garage for either practical of security reasons. You can place most solar security lights wherever you like around your home and use sunlight to charge the batteries for use at night, providing you with extra flexibility.
Solar chargers for your electronic devices are great to have around, particularly when you don’t have access to electricity. I think I might buy one to keep in my backpack so I’ll always have a way to charge my phone in case of emergencies while I’m camping or if the power goes out.
A few months ago when my boyfriend and I went to visit his mom, I noticed a single tree in the middle of the yard lit up at night. In the morning, I discovered she’d wrapped the tree in what looked like white Christmas lights that had a tiny solar panel at the end. After that, I noticed most stores with garden departments carry a variety of decorative solar lights. From hummingbirds for your garden to mosaic jars for your deck, you can probably find a decorative set of solar lights that fit your style without adding to your electricity bill.
I love fountains and always wanted one for my garden. However, just like the security and sidewalk light, I didn’t want to run electricity to it. Plus, a fountain is just a decorative piece that tacks on extra energy usage to my electric bill. It doesn’t really serve a purpose like sidewalk or security lights. It’s decorative and just kind of nice to have.
The wonderful thing about these small solar devices is that you don’t have to mess with electrical lines. You just put them in a sunny place and you’re done. No need to call an electrician, which doesn’t matter much to my dad, but works out for the rest of us. Adding small solar devices can add security and subtle decorative features to your home without adding to your monthly electric bill.