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Saturday, September 18, 2010

The MYTH of Expensive GREEN living

After my last post I received a lot of comments about how it was to expensive for panels or how it was to costly to set up solar cells, so I've come here today to debunk these MYTHS for some people.  While I understand this elaborate rouse of corporate brainwashing has been building for years at the hands of power companies, but it simply isn't true.  Some of you may ask why they DON'T want you to go green and the answer is simple.  If 20% of the United States switches to a self sustained solar living, then these companies will lose 20% of a $100 BILLION dollar plus industry. thats right, 20 BILLION dollars minimum that companies like DTE and ConnectivPower have a stake in, and don't want to lose.  Add to that the knowledge that federal mandates REQUIRE power companies to BUY BACK any non used power from you, and PAY you for it.  This means not only are you not paying them for your power, but they have to pay YOU.  This means their 20% loss, is closer to a 25-30% or a MINIMUM of 25-30 BILLION dollars they lose on a yearly basis.
Now Imagine what happens when 80% of the people in the US switch and become self sustaining.  not only would they lose 80%, but the average buy-back rate is about half, meaning a payout of  an additional 20 - 40 %.  Well if you can do simple math, that means that if just 80% of the US becomes self sustainable using GREEN Energy, then The Power industry stands to lose 100-120% of that $100 BILLION dollar industry, and that means no more power company.
So here are the myths perpetuated:
1) Solar panels are to expensive.
Solar panels are NOT expensive.  As proof, I've provided the following
50 WATT SOLAR PANEL ON EBAY
This unit right here is currently one of over 1,000 just like it being sold brand new on eBay.  It it currently marked at $0.99 with the reserve not met, however I know from experience that the reserve on these is usually between  60 to 80 dollars.
Now, some of you may be saying, thats a little pricey, but bare in mind this one panel is 50 watts.  This one panel, if hooked to a single deep cell battery, could power your refrigerator permanently. Now I know some of you are saying, "why my refrigerator?" and the answer is simple, its always running, and we need it that way.  If the power goes out, your food will stay fresh and not spoil, and if you have a gas stove, your in business still.
That's not the only thing though. If you contact one of these sellers on eBay, they generally are willing to do a  bulk order, cheaper!  I ordered mine at $40 a panel including shipping, because I ordered 10.  So yes, I spent 400 dollars, which did take some bite out of my wallet, but the fact I'm not producing enough electricity to power my refrigerator, my lights, my heater, and my computer, and my entertainment system. means I've cut more then 70% out of my electric bill!  I don't know about where you live, but here in Detroit, they tend to run about $300 a month for electricity.  Saving myself $210+ a month sure takes the sting out of it, especially since in 2 months minimum, I'm up a minimum of $20 and compared to last month, I'm smooth sailing.  If i spend the next two months putting the difference between my new electric bill and my old electric bill in a jar, I can double my panel array, and then the electric company pays me every month instead of me paying them.  How is it expensive to have a power company paying you, while eliminating your own bill?  Consider that the less energy you use, the more they have to buy (because your still creating the same amount monthly) so if you shut your house down, and go on vacation for a month, they practically pay for it!)
2) The Tech costs more in some places then others.
All hail the power of the internet, where if you don't like the prices locally, you can order it cheaper from elsewhere.  Right now, the bulk of solar panels come from China, Japan, and the United States.  When ordering in bulk packages, I have YET to meet a company that wont at least throw in shipping.  The biggest thing you pay for with Solar power is having it installed.  And this is why Myth  number 2 works for them.  They tell you its so hard to do, you need a specialized installer for everything. BULL$&!% You can install the panels yourself, its easy, and generally they come with mounting instructions and brackets!  Because its a niche market currently and not so mainstream, they have the ability to piggyback on the power companies "its expensive" claims by inflating their labor costs.
As an example, I use myself.  When I moved to Detroit in February, I called a few companies to get quotes on installing 10 panels, telling them i already had all the equipment.  They first hemmed and hauled because they prefer to use their own equipment (so they can pad the price there too), but in the end gave me a quote of almost $4000! I'm sure that would make ANYONE feel it was expensive!  Bare in mind, thats 4000 dollars for 6 hours of work that I did myself.  thats would take a crew of 2 people 2 hours to do if they did it on a regular basis (remember this is a solar energy company i called) meaning a price markup of 1,000 per hour per technician! no wonder they have everyone scared!

The point is people, it doesn't cost an arm and a leg, and its not hard to do.  If you own a drill, and a ladder you can put them up yourself, and if you shop around, its not expensive to buy, the tech is out there, you just have to look for it, and if spending an hour looking for solar panels at the best deal is to taxing on you, then have a buddy do it, or just follow the link under the picture of the panel above. There, cost effective.

42 comments:

razortek said...

cool!supportin bro :)

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J Mo said...

Extremely true, thank you very much for that! Was a great read

Jackson said...

It's not a myth though. Think about it, if you don't have enough money to invest in those things now, then it's not even worth risking your security to buy them.

tl;dr, Story of my life.

Luke Parker said...

Interesting read I'm thinking of getting solar panels when I get my own place.

http://lpphotographer.blogspot.com

Eferhilda said...

Finally got around to following you :P

Sparrow said...

@jackson But it doesnt cost thousands. Think about it like this, how many times a month do you eat out? if its at least once, thats an easy 30 dollars right there. if its 2 times, theres 60, and that is more then a single panel costs. So you don't go out to dinner twice this month, yeah that sucks, but in the long run, with the money you save, you'll be able to go out to dinner EVERY night.
The point is, you find ways to save. I did it by swapping the bulbs like i talk about in my first post, and then every month taking the difference in my bill and setting it aside. am i out any extra money? no i just saved what i would have saved until i had enough. for the record, it took one months savings from my bulb changes to buy a single panel. After that first panel was up, i had enough in difference from the next months bill to buy 2 more... it grows my friend, it grows.

Kitari said...

Hmmmm. Will have to do some more research but it seems decent enough.

mitternacht said...

Wow hard core props for todays blog I'm definantly looking into this now

David Davidson said...

Well, good job Sparrow. You've just convinced me even more to get these things. :P

Falloutv13 said...

If you were to buy the 300 watt 12v-120v power invert mentioned in the earlier post, could you keep that all the way through expanding to bigger panels? Like, if I wanted to get the 50watt panel?

Thanks.

shirou said...

lifehack guy supports your blog..

Trades For Veterans said...

Cool Blog, Very Informational! Now following!

lolwut said...

very informative. hopefully i will be able to save some money on my electricity bill now.
thanks for the tips :)

In Dodd I trust said...

People are just too lazy and blame make up these myths to justify for it

http://wordofdodd.blogspot.com/

Viperman said...

thnx for the tips.

do they really pay you if you manage to not even use electricity anymore?

shogunwarrior said...

inspiring post :-)

Bunny said...

Have you not mentioned to me an idea you had about making your own solar panels. I know where were not directly converting sunlight to electricity, but was there not a way to use it to heat water and make power that way?

Caprica said...

Looking to invest in solar panels someday. Very informative, thanks!

Mutefox said...

*knocks shit over to be contrary* For your information, I was being sarcastic when I was talking about Animal Farm...and I don't give a shit what Fidel Castro says, Cuba is as communist as high-class hooker giving head to a coked-up CEO.

...also, nice post <3

Jacob said...

it is expensive and full of shit duude

Much Poopies! said...

well done, man.

smoochies n' poopies :*

PS: sun in boxes is awesome!! =D

Sparrow said...

@falloutv13, yes you can use it, they link together quite nicely. However, that being said, eventully you'll want to upgrade the power inverter, since 300 watts is will eventually become very limiting.

@viperman, yes they do still pay you, even if your no longer paying them for electricity.

@Jacob, sure ok, believe what you want, I am not on a mission to change everyones mind. I speak from 8 years experience in GREEN home renovations, and I'm currently advancing my career with ANOTHER degree is Green Systems and Renewable Resources Management. I Currently hold a LEED inspection certification, and unlike you, i know what I'm talking about.

HardwareGod said...

very informational. Keep up the good posts.

Deep Thought said...

definitely wort the effort, now following.

razortek said...

i'm sry i'm following a list of link and i post part of that daily so that's as i said when i started the blog :"it will require 2-3 days to be added on the list" i'm sry 4 that :S

Slumph said...

awesome tip about the refrigerator and the solar pannel <3 =D

Can somebody explain what my adsense html snippet is and how to get to it on my blog? thanks =]

Come At Me Bro said...

I need some free energy!

The State of Human Intelligence said...

Great post! Be sure to visit my blog too

Michaelangelo said...

I think people are just too lazy to do all these things...but to be honest, so am I, lol. I dont waste much electricity in my house though to be honest, so Idk.


Much love and a lil currency support going your way bro

down2brasstax said...

id love to have panels..my damn electric bill skyrockets in the summer because of the air conditioners :(

Swift Love said...

thanks for the inspiration!

Crispy said...

I've wanted to go solar for a while, but even though they're cheap, I can't afford it. :(

Barnacle said...

I would like to experiment with solarpower, but since I live in sweden, its not the ideal circumstances ^^

Swarmster said...

great post man, just doing my rounds, keep up the good work =)

The Crimson King said...

Just saying hi to all my followers stop by
my blog some time:)
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AdPlusCommunications said...

Those solar panels are getting cheaper every year!

Venefican said...

awesome good read

Marco said...

I would need more money before i could go green fully

Out Rounding

http://marco-marcob.blogspot.com/

Viking Travels said...

Thanks, that was enlightening, maybe I should get some solar panels... Just stopping by to show daily support, have a nice day!! ;-)

netz3r0 said...

get the green, and get in between, those tittys! lol

Mayela said...

Great info, we all can be able to live green

AdPlusCommunications said...

Been thinking more and more about solar pannels but I mean, how fast do they pay themselves off? You should do a post about it!