Passive Solar Energy Heating and Cooling
Clean energy is most commonly associated with the use of solar, wind,
hydroelectric, and geothermal energy to generate electricity. These are all
renewable, effectively infinite sources of energy at our disposal, and they will
become much more important over the coming decades to our national infrastructure
and power supply to deliver clean, cheap energy to the masses. However, solar
energy can be used for more than simply generating electricity, and you can meet
the heating and cooling needs of your home through the use of what has become known
as passive solar energy.
Store It For Later
You can use solar energy equipment to actually store passive solar energy for
later consumption. With complete integration into your home possible with modern
technology, this form of heating and cooling will be connected to a variety of
vents throughout your home, which will be able to either cool or heat your home.
Also, passive solar energy can be used for your water heater, saving even more
electricity that way.
The trick to passive solar energy is that it doesn't have to convert solar
energy into electricity, thus losing a certain amount of energy in the process.
What you're left with is a more efficient heating and cooling system than you would
have if you converted solar energy into electricity and then used that solar energy
for your water heater, electric heat registers, and air conditioners. However, you
may want to complement the cooling aspect of this system with a dehumidifier or two
to take the humidity out of the air, which can make the cooling feel a lot more
efficient, or you may even want to have an air conditioner for back up for
particularly hot days that reach degrees in the three digits.
As a rule of thumb, you need to buy solar panels to cover about one third of the
total square feet of your home on your roof, so if your home is 1200 square feet,
then you'll need to cover a 400 square feet area on your roof with solar panels for
passive solar energy heating and cooling. This technology for your home is also
perfectly complemented by more conventional solar energy to generate electricity,
so you can empower all of your electrical devices using free and clean solar energy
as well. Passive solar energy (and normal solar energy as well) will pay itself off
within a decade, and after that time, you'll still be saving hundreds of dollars on
your electric bill each month.