Recycling News

Solar Panels or Wind Energy? Which Is Best For You?

imagesSolar power and wind (power) turbine generators have both become front-runners in energy-saving technology.  They are the two main focal points in renewable energy systems today. Residential capabilities and accessibility in Bay Area neighborhoods lean more toward solar, however, wind generators have their advantages in rural or open areas.

Solar panels attract the sun’s rays, where wind turbines do not rely on the sun. They are most effective where there is a breeze or chances of high winds, such as on the shoreline, to generate power.

Solar and wind turbines are both advantageous to our environment, where they produce clean energy. They both can produce energy to heat a home, swimming pool, and even be a “driving” force for your electric car.

Solar panels are attached to a roof, are easy to install, and they provide no noise. A wind turbine’s effectiveness on a roof would not be as productive citing noise coming through walls, for example. (Check with your city about installation, as some cities might frown on wind generators within normal city or town limits.)

Both solar and wind turbines can be tied to or not tied to the energy grid; however, both will need a battery bank if you decide to use an “off-the-grid” system. They both can save us money, although, solar panels are more costly.

Wind generators will produce energy from the wind 24/7. They do not require the sun to be effective in saving energy and money. Solar panels require the power of the sun and can only be harnessed during sunlight hours. Where solar panels are pretty much maintenance free after installation, they will need to be cleaned. They will collect dust and dirt which prevents sunlight from coming in. Solar panels do have a 25-year guarantee, and are more reliable. There is a chance, though, for damage from something like a baseball, rock, or hail. They, however, have no moving parts and produce no noise. Where pretty much the only maintenance of a solar panel would be cleaning, wind turbines have moving parts.

Wind generators may require repair and replacement of its moving parts on occasion. Their propellers are detrimental to birds, and they also provide noise coming from the propellers. Where wind turbines are less expensive to obtain, maintenance can be more costly.

By doing research on solar power vs. wind power, you will determine which system for your energy savings, is best for you.