I want to save energy

Build Your solar Panel

I’m in college but I want to save energy, is there a small inexpensive solar panel system to invest in?  I want to be able to install a small solar panel system for my house in college (which I will have for 2 more years but want to take the panels with me) but a serious solar panel system could cost upwards of $20thousand and I obviously can’t afford that!! Any ideas or suggestions?


This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 1st, 2010 at 12:48 am and is filed under Solar panels. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


10 Responses to “I want to save energy”

  1. Mike Says:

    Sadly, even an expensive solar panel system does not produce very much electricity.

    One of my colleagues installed a $30,000 system on his house several years ago. The system only produces a little over 4,000 kilowatt hours annually. Which is not very much electricity for the amount of money that he spent.

    Just to pay the interest on the mortgage that he took out on his house to pay for the system is almost 60 cents per kilowatt hour, and that does not even include depreciation or maintenance on the system. That is a very expensive way to produce electricity.

    If you want a solar system that is more cost effective and costs less money. I recommend that you try a solar hot water system instead. It costs much less than a solar photovoltaic system and will reduce you gas bill substantially because you will not have to use much gas to heat hot water except in the winter when the sun is not shining.

  2. FredHH Says:

    go to http://www.ebay.com
    Search for “solar panel”
    To get one that is actually useful to supply any loads in your house/apratment/dorm room… you will need 250 watts minimum.

    There is no such thing as a cheap solar panel.

  3. Elite Lady Says:

    No. They are never inexpensive and right now the technology is not very good (but there is R and D being done to improve them) so the results you get are not very good.

    Also, they only work when the sun is shining and they generate little right now however in the future there may be nanotechnology used to develop a paint you can put on your roof that will work as a solar panel.

  4. Meow Mix Says:

    I’ve seen back packs with tiny solar panels to charge up laptops or small electronics.

    Or go talk to people in physics department and tell them they can use your house for experimental technology.

  5. cynder66 Says:

    Here’s a website for portable systems-even if you were to hook up a laptop or whater, every bit helps! They’ve got decent prices also, but i haven’t purchased from them yet.

  6. Grammage Says:

    I’m definitely no expert in the field but hope to learn much more in the future. I’m in the infancy stage of researching as many options as possible in the design and construction of a total “green” house.

    That being said, a particular local news story sparked my interest when they investigated the cost effectiveness of residential solar panel systems. Here in Austin, Texas, through subsidies and incentives offered, you can install a system that costs roughly 22.5k for about 7.

    Apparently these deductions come from a federal incentive (which is a very small portion) combined with those set by the city itself. Austin is a pretty progressive city so I imagine their incentives might be a little better than most but you can call your city’s general info line (311) and do a little more digging.

    Another option you might have is renting the equipment. I was told yesterday that a company here in town would allow for the installation and use for a monthly rate. I know how tight cash can be in school and 7 thousand might not be tangible.

    The whole issue of energy conservation is so prevalent these days that new info is constantly coming out. Give your current energy provider a call and see what they can tell ya. I hope you find something that works for you.


  7. Keyan Says:

    hi they make roll out solar panels that are thin and flexible and just roll out. You could probably find one of these to power your notebook….
    I had running a solio and this powered my phone, psp, ipod…
    I also invested in a freeplay radio that has a solar panel and a hand dynamo they work really well….
    All i had left really running was my laptop and occasionally my tv…… I didnt have a microwave or use much else other than gas and a fan and electricity to heat my small hot water tank and fridge and few other occasional various appliance…….my bill was about 1.50$AUD (5.6kwh) a day with 50% renewable energy wind power and service charge included.

    I recommend buying something small even as the main reason I bought my solio was so I could take my ipod camping and still power it up
    This cost about 160AUD prob about 130 US………
    So who says there is no such thing as cheap solar panels it is as big as my hand and it can be propped anywhere.

  8. Attorney Says:

    Yes.. Get a solar powered Calculator.. you will use less batteries and save pollution..

    They are very inexpensive..

  9. Freesolaronline Says:

    The six examples below are not packaged kits, but flexible suggestions to find your starting point easily. These examples fit six different levels of life-style or budget. Each example shows the cost and the watts of solar modules required in a northern US climate. Each is a well balanced system, but still gives a range of choices in quality. It’s easy to use one of the examples or make small changes for your own needs. Prices include mounts for the solar modules and cables for batteries and inverter where required, but these items may vary with each installation. for the rest check out the resource at freesolaronline.com coz the answer needs more details to it

  10. Nick Says:

    The first thing you need to think about when going for a renewable energy source is to cut down your usage. You can do things like using compact fluorescent lights, replacing your old washer, dryer, fridge, etc.. A rule of thumb I heard once was that for every $1 spent reducing your usage, you reduced the cost of a renewable energy system by $5!

    Second, a solar system may not be the way to go. It has the longest payback of all the systems out there, at up to 15 years. (Can be much less with local rebates) Other systems such as solar air heating can be as short as 3-5 years. Solar Hot water systems are also a better investment.

    If you do want to go solar, I believe there are packages that are closer to 3-4K, vs 20K. Though, they obviously won’t power your whole house. (They have one at the same place as the source below: http://store.altenergystore.com/Kits-and-Package-Deals/On-Grid-Grid-Tied-Systems/Alt-E-Designed-Grid-Tie-Packages/c1087/)

    I’d recommend the source listed below! It is a great starting point for learning what you can do!

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