So, you’ve made the commitment to live a greener life. You’re an eco hero in our eyes! While there are many ways to reduce your carbon footprint, getting a solar panel system installed on your roof is one of the most effective.
To start, using solar energy is an eco-friendly move for several reasons:
- By using solar energy, you’ll reduce your reliance on traditional forms of energy generation like fossil fuels, which produce damaging carbon emissions.
- Solar panels don’t require any fuel combustion to do their job, so putting them to work generates little to no greenhouse gases.
- Using renewable forms of energy, like solar, slows the depletion of nonrenewable sources.
And when you add a solar battery to your array, you expand your system’s capability to power your home. This means that you could even power your home at night!
Reducing the amount of traditional electricity you use by going solar is one simple way to actively make the planet greener. And that’s a brilliant move, if we do say so ourselves.
Here are six ways you can reduce your carbon footprint at home with a solar panel system.
1. Keep your perishables chilled
Would you like a little mold with your food? We didn’t think so. Fortunately, we have the refrigerator, a must-have appliance that keeps your perishable food from going bad. So, you’ll be pleased to know that solar energy can power your refrigerator.
Specifically, a refrigerator with a capacity of 150 to 200 W could run on 201 kWh of solar energy continuously for 365 days. This depends, of course, on the size of your system and whether you have a solar battery.
2. Do the laundry
Ah, laundry. The most renewable of household chores. In other words, there are always more dirty clothes to wash. If you find yourself doing laundry often, you might worry about how the electricity could affect the environment. Well, solar energy can give the washing machine and/or dryer enough juice to get your clothes clean and/or dry.
You would need 259 kWh of solar energy to run a 2500 to 3000 W washing machine for 48 weeks at four hours per week. And a clothes dryer with the same capacity as the washing machine above could operate for 32 weeks at two hours per week on 192 kWh of solar power.
Running your dryer less often, for shorter periods of time and at a lower heat setting also go a long way towards reducing your carbon footprint. And as a bonus, it might free up some of your time for activities you actually enjoy!
3. Whip up a meal
The stove is another appliance that gets a lot of use on a daily basis. Fortunately, if you have an electric stove, solar energy could provide the power your stove needs to operate. A 2000 to 2500 W conventional electric oven could cook food for 48 weeks at 1.5 hours per week on 162 kWh of solar energy.
You can still prepare tasty meals with solar power even if your stove isn’t electric. Get handy, and earn bragging rights, by building an outdoor solar oven. All it takes is a leftover pizza box and a few common household items. Heat from the sun takes care of the rest. It’s like the grownup version of an Easy-Bake oven!
4. Charge your devices
Can you picture a world without devices like cell phones, tablets and laptops? Few of us can…and why would we? They’re so convenient. All of this device appreciation has resulted in a significant amount of electricity used to charge them.
But there’s good news! You can charge your devices in electrical outlets using solar energy instead. A 5 W tablet charger would require 1.09 kWh of solar power to deliver a charge to the device for 365 days at three hours per day.
Speaking of charging, did you know you can charge your electric vehicle (EV) with solar power, as well? You could say that solar energy and EVs are the perfect pairing. And you can find out exactly how many kWh of solar energy you’d need to power your EV of choice here. Doing this will also help you decide, with assistance from a Social Energy Specialist, how many solar panels you need.
5. Keep the lights on
Chances are, the lights in your home rarely cross your mind, unless one goes out. But lights are in fact one of the main contributors to electricity consumption. Whether you’re talking about lights mounted on the ceiling, table lamps or floor lamps, lights can consume a decent amount of electricity.
But you don’t have to live in the dark to reduce your environmental impact! Lights are yet another thing in your home that can operate on solar energy instead. 2 kWh would be enough to illuminate a 7 W LED light bulb for 48 weeks at six hours per week.
Switching from traditional (in other words, outdated!) light bulbs to LED light bulbs is another great way to maintain a small carbon footprint. The drool worthy icing on the cake is, making the change can also save you money on electric bills. You see, LED bulbs use up to 90% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than their energy greedy counterparts.
6. Catch up on your favorite TV shows
Do you live for your favorite TV shows? Then you’ll be pleased to know that solar energy can help you watch TV, too. In fact, by combining the solar systems of all ADT customers together, along with the number of panels we’ve installed and the amount of potential power they could provide in one year, you could power over 30 million hours of watching Netflix!
And if you have a solar battery, you can enjoy TV marathons with little to no impact on the environment. It would take 241 kWh of solar energy to power a 90 to 250 W LCD TV for 335 days at four hours per day.
Good for the environment ― and you.
Solar power really does help minimize the carbon footprint of your home life. And while you’re doing good for the planet, you’ll also be prepared if there’s a power outage in your area. Now, that’s what we call a win-win!
Learn more about how a solar energy system can reduce your carbon footprint by speaking with a Solar Energy Specialist.