What renewable energy will you be looking into?

The recent government incentive to promote ecological mind sets in the home is good news for the environment. Householders will be offered loans to deck out their homes with energy-saving appliances and equipment, including extra insulation and new boilers.

So what exactly do you need for your home?

Loft Insulation

If you’ve no loft insulation in your house, you could be losing up to a quarter of your home’s heat through the roof.

Most newer buildings are built to a standard taking into account this loss, but if you have a home that’s a little older, chances are you’re wasting all that lovely warmth and putting yourself out of pocket.

The Green Deal will provide owners of uninsulated homes the chance to reduce the energy used in heating by proving loft insulation.

Wall Insulation

You could be looking at losing up to a third of your home’s heat through uninsulated walls. Cavity walls are much more energy efficient than the solid walls of older houses, and if your home was built before around 1940, it’s more likely to have the latter.

With good wall insulation, you’re looking at making a real saving in energy bills so it’s a good idea to find out if you’re equipped to keep all the heat in your home.

Boilers

According to energy efficiency ratings, a band A boiler is 20% more energy and cost effective and a band G one. It’s usually the older boilers branded with the G rating.

If your boiler is outdated, you could be losing a lot of money from it. Modern, band A boilers have an energy efficiency rating of 90% and allow you to keep much better tabs on your energy use. It’s worth investing in thermostatic radiator valves so rooms that aren’t being used aren’t heated too.

Katy Jones at Dulas had this to say of the feed-in tariff scheme:

“The feed in tariff incentive from the UK government is encouraging many people to consider installing renewable energy technologies; it will naturally mean that some renewables companies also look to offer energy efficiency measures as part of their product portfolios.”

One single wind turbineProducts which will include solar panels. Fitted onto the roof, solar panels are capable of generating renewable energy for the home. And if they are producing more energy than your household needs, you can sell that energy back to the National Grid.

From our perspective,” Ms. Jones continues, “Solar PV is a viable, cost effective way to generate free electricity and is especially good for high energy users looking to reduce their energy costs or with Carbon Reduction Commitments to meet.

Other renewable energy sources will include micro wind turbines, which will be accepted on the Green Deal. Though they are a little small to provide all of your energy, it’s the little things that make a big difference to an energy bill.

With the government backing you, it’s never been a better time to look into renewable energy.

8 thoughts on “What renewable energy will you be looking into?

  1. The energy bill in my home is quite expensive, even when I am trying my best to use the heater/AC as little as possible, and making sure the lights are off when they aren’t needed. It’s still kinda high, so I’ve been thinking of ways on how to lower it, and solar panels always seemed like a good idea to invest in. Eventually, they’d pay for themselves right? And you can even sell the excess energy back to the National Grid? That’s cool, but knowing my house, I don’t think I’d have any leftover.

    Anyways, nice post!

    • @ Mike,

      If you’ve done everything you can to increase your home’s energy efficiency, then the next best thing is to add solar or wind energy. I’m not sure how energy pricing is in the UK, but here in the states, we have our regular rates, and we have what’s called a peak energy rate. The peak energy rate can be nearly double what the regular rate costs, and is utilized during the heaviest energy consumption days. Mostly, the hottest days of summer, from late morning until early evening. These are high consumption times and the peak energy rate kicks in to encourage users to minimize electrical usage. This is where solar really shines (pun intended). Your solar panels start producing energy about mid-morning and continue until early evening. So while most people are getting charged higher rates, solar owners are producing the majority of their own energy. For an example, a solar array that produces 1KW of electricity in the spring may save you $0.08/hour. But in the summer, it can save you as much as $0.16/hour. The numbers are only an example, but it’s a figure nobody factors in when considering solar. The solar panels are at peak performance during the times that grid electricity doubles in cost. Then in the overnight hours when the solar panels aren’t producing electricity, the electricity you are buying from the grid is back to its’ regular price. Something to consider.

      • Hi Green, I have a friend with a 4kW system (16 panels) and at the time they installed it, the FIT was guaranteed for 25 years – it is now 20 years.

        The National Grid buy back the equivalent of half what they generate (no matter what they use) and they also benefit from reduced energy bills – which are always on the rise.

        Having had their system for nearly 3 years, they said the whole system is looking like it will pay for itself (so reduced bills+FIT) within the first 6 years. Their system generates around 500kWh a month in the summer and 150kWh per month in the winter.

        That means that their initial investment will receive a total return of more than 4 times their initial investment over the 25 years!

        Even though the FIT has now reduced in the UK, if I were to take out a similar sized system today, it would only take about 12 years to pay for itself – meaning another 8 years of profit from FIT and a lifetime of energy bill reduction.

        Solar is a sound long-term investment.

  2. I wish we could have more than enough energy for our homes in Nigeria not to talk of selling excess back. I just realize how much we have been missing out on renewable energy sources. I hope we get to this level someday through government support.

    • Christopher Roberts

      It is often easy to forget that there are millions of people living without access to clean water and billions without access to electricity. There are various reasons for inequalities, but all I can do is say I hope you get plentiful electricity too in the near future.

      Thanks for the comment.
      Christopher – Admin Team

  3. Increasing your home’s energy efficiency is a far better choice than switching to renewable energy such as wind and solar. I think renewable energy is a wonderful choice, but making your home use less energy has a greater impact and is often far less expensive on the budget.

    • Christopher Roberts

      Making your home more energy efficient is indeed usually much cheaper and is a good way to reduce energy usage, however in the long-run investing in (the right) renewables pays off more than reducing consumption and improving energy efficiency. Ideally you use both.

      In the UK, wind, solar and tidal power are very viable forms of energy generation. With breakthroughs in energy storage, non-renewable are more viable than ever before – everywhere.

      Thanks for adding your view, welcome to the blog :-)
      Christopher – Admin Team

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