You can dip your toes in the solar energy waters by simply installing a solar powered whole house fan. A solar powered attic fan turns on automatically when it becomes too warm. You'll reduce the cost of cooling your home by having this solar-powered attic fan remove hot air from your home. Additionally, as it is solar powered, your power bill will go down, not up.
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When it comes to solar energy, the sky is truly the limit, so learn about your options before you buy. How much space are you allowed, by local law, to fill with solar equipment? Can you sell excess energy back to the grid? What sort of regulations are in place?
Panels have to face the sun to draw power. You get the energy from the sun, so it's important for the panels to be located in an area where they can get all the solar energy possible.