Energy efficiency is one of the most important factors to consider in building and remodeling. And odds are, you take steps to reduce energy at home with Energy Star appliances or compact fluorescent light bulbs. But have you ever thought of taking it a step further, by outfitting your home to produce energy? When it comes to green energy options for your home in Wisconsin, you have some great choices!
There’s never been a better time to fit your home with solar panels; advancements in technology have made solar panels less expensive to produce and more affordable than ever. To sweeten the pot, there are some great tax incentives to go solar, like a 100% exemption on property tax increases from installing a solar power system. You might wonder: “it’s not always sunny in Wisconsin, would solar power even work?” Surprisingly, Wisconsin actually has more potential for harnessing solar energy than Germany – the leading solar country in the world. You can even check out how your own home can benefit from solar energy with Madison’s solar map and calculator.
When you think of wind energy, the large-scale, hundred megawatt wind farms are the first things that probably come to mind. But did you know, you have your own wind turbine – albeit much smaller – in your backyard? If you live in a rural area with at least an acre of land, you can install a small wind turbine to generate electricity and offset your energy use.
Geothermal HVAC is an incredibly efficient and reliable way to heat and cool your home, and can lead to thousands of dollars in energy savings each year. It works by using the consistent temperature of the earth to do all the heavy lifting. Whether it’s 90 degrees or 20 degrees outside, just a few feet underground it stays in the 50s year-round. A geothermal HVAC system has pipes filled with water that go down into the earth to absorb that heat and bring it up to a heat pump. From there, it just takes a little bit of electricity to get the air to a comfortable temperature. Switching to a geothermal system will zero out your heating fuel costs, and to sweeten the deal, there are many tax incentives available to help offset the installation costs!
By combining green energy sources with a reduction in energy use through efficient appliances and practices, you can make a big difference – not only for your electric bill, but for the environment as well. If you’re considering alternative energy for your home, we can run a Home Energy Assessment to decide which source (or sources) would work best for you!