Homeowners in Hawaii Need to Maximize Use of Solar Energy

As many people in Hawaii know, there is an abundance of sunlight in the state. This paper is going to explain to you why homeowners in Hawaii should maximize use of solar energy. First, this article will cover some of the reasons why many homeowners currently do not utilize our largest natural energy source, followed by the benefits of using solar energy, ending with a conclusion of how everybody will benefit if more people take more advantage of solar energy.’, ‘There are probably a million reasons more people do not use solar energy, but the biggest reason of all is the cost involved with it. Many people either do not have or do not want to spend the initial average cost of 4,500 dollars to install the solar water heating system. There are many reasons why people don”t want to make this initial investment, but most of the reasons are personal or people are just ignorant to the fact of how much money they will save in the long run.

Although there are many skilled people living in Hawaii, many people who purchase the solar water heating system do not know how to install it nor do they want to spend the additional money to have it professionally installed.

Another major factor that discourages homeowners from purchasing the solar water heating system is the homeowner associations in Hawaii. Many associations can be rather troublesome to get approval to install such a system. In many cases there may be an additional association fee involved just to get approval. This process tends to discourage many homeowners from taking the time to get approval. In some cases, associations actually do not allow the installation of these systems.

Now that some of the reasons homeowners do not utilize a solar water heating system in their home are clear, some benefits of solar power will be discussed. To promote the use of solar energy Hawaii”s largest electric company Hawaiian Electric or HECO offers a rebate program to reduce the total cost of the initial purchase of the solar water heating system. As you may or may not know, the average cost of a solar water heating system is about $4,500. The Hawaii Electric Company offers a $750 rebate to drop the price to $3,750. HECO also offers a $30 – $70 rebate for the high efficiency water heaters. Not only can you save on solar water heating systems and water heaters, but HECO will also give you $175 dollars back with a rebate for a heat pump water heater. As you can see, Hawaii”s largest electric company is doing their best to reduce the cost for every customer they have and to ultimately save our environment and promote the use of our largest natural resource the sun.

With the temperatures in Hawaii being relatively warm year round, many families throughout Hawaii run their air conditioners to keep the humidity down, this puts a major drain on the electricity throughout Hawaii. When more homeowners take advantage of using solar energy, the consumption of electricity will be lowered. That means local electric companies will not have to burn much of natural gas to generate electricity, thus leaving more natural resources for future generations. By electric companies not having to burn natural gas, this will lower carbon dioxide being put into the air and keep our air cleaner. Ultimately not only will you be saving the electric companies money, but you will be putting money back in your own pocket. In case you are wondering how much money you can save with a solar water heating system installed in your home, you can save up to 90% on your water heating costs or the equivalent of $5 – $10 per person per month. That may not look like a lot for the short term, but by saving that much money the solar heating system will pay for itself and lower your total bill. Let”s do a small scenario to demonstrate how much you will save. For this scenario lets say you are a new homeowner with 3 people living in your household and you have 30 years left on your mortgage. We will show you the total savings on electricity for the duration of your home loan. We are also going to say your average cost per month on electricity is $100.
$100 per month
– $7.50 average savings per person or $22.50 per month
$77.50 Total cost of electricity per month
X 12 months per year
$930 per year.
X30 years.
$27,900 total cost of electricity for the duration of your home loan.

Now let”s see what the total cost would be without the solar heating system”s savings for this same scenario.

$100 per month
– $0.00 savings
$100 Total cost of electricity per month
X 12 months per year
$1,200 per year.
X 30 years.
$36,000 total cost of electricity for the duration of your home loan.

As you can see you will save a total of $8,100 by using the solar water heating system as opposed to not utilizing solar energy.

In case this doesn”t look like enough savings for you to consider using a solar water heating system, the government also promotes the use of solar energy by giving you a tax credit. The state of Hawaii will give you a 35% tax credit on the purchase of the solar water heating system. As you remember, when you read about HECO providing a rebate to reduce the cost of the water heating system, the cost came to $3,750, but if you factor the savings with the 35% you get back from the state of Hawaii also, you will see the total cost of the unit will only be $2,437.50. Now if saving $2,062.50 on the initial cost of the system doesn”t interest you, then what will?

Now you will learn about the basic process of the solar water heating system. By learning the process of how it works you will see that it is environmentally safe. In solar water heaters, water flows through tubes, which are attached to a black metal absorber plate. The plate is enclosed in an insulated box with a transparent window to let sunlight in. The heated water is transferred to a tank where it is available for your use. Please keep in mind that this process generates no electricity, it just makes hot water. Although it only produces hot water, it does not let off any harmful emissions and if something was to fail or a pipe was to break, nothing harmful would be spilled.

In conclusion, you have seen the benefits and savings of purchasing a solar water heating system far outweighs that of not using one. This also proves that a little time and effort can help to keep our air clean by maximizing use of solar energy. It will literally put money back into your pocket; thus proving homeowners in Hawaii need to maximize use of solar energy to keep our planet a great place to live for centuries to come.

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