Harness the Wind
Sep 24th, 2012 | By Andrew | Category: Energy, Wind | Print This Article
If you are like most people, you take it for granted that when you flip the light switch in your bedroom, you will have lights. However, there could very well come a day when electricity is not available. The power grids across the country are becoming overloaded. Blackouts are common in many cities, and people have to learn to cope without power for many hours, sometimes even days.
You can take steps to be prepared in the event that the power grid goes offline. In addition to being prepared for having no electricity, you can also save money with an alternate source of power that is not on the grid. Wind power has been in use for hundreds of years— long before wind turbines even became an option. Man has harnessed the wind to power sailboats and to help them become airborne. Today, the fear of depleting energy resources has made wind an important option for powering homes and even entire towns.
Wind can create a large amount of power. Turbines can be built to harness the wind’s power and generate enough electricity to power a house, or it can be captured and stored in batteries as a backup power source. You can stay on the power grid and supplement your electricity usage with wind power, or you can go off the grid completely. All you need to create energy is high winds and a wind turbine.
The turning blades cause the shaft to turn, which in turn creates electricity that is sent to a battery source for storage. This electricity or energy must be converted using an inverter that makes it usable for households. The wind turbines capacity for creating electricity is directly related to the how tall the wind turbine is and how big the blades are on the turbine.
Most homeowners who add a wind turbine for power stay on the grid, at least to some degree. This is simply due to not being able to completely forecast how much wind the area you live in will have in any given time. When the wind isn’t blowing, you aren’t storing power. Most homes use electricity as a backup in case the wind does become still. On the other hand, if there is an excess amount of power created, the homeowner can opt to sell it to the local power company.
Another option is for the homeowner to go completely off the local power grid. The only way a homeowner can go off the power grid completely is to store power in batteries. This backup source is necessary should the wind should become still and not produce enough power for the home. A home completely off the grid could experience severe outages if the wind is slowed for any length of time.
Installing a wind power system in your home can bring substantial savings to your power bill. Savings between 10 and 90 percent are not uncommon (based on how much wind power you are going to use versus how much electricity you are going to rely on).
The percentage amount is dependent upon the size of the wind energy turbine you install, how much wind you receive, and how fast that wind is.
A small wind turbine (for example, a one-kilowatt turbine) will produce enough energy to reduce the power bill by approximately 10 to 20 percent. As you increase the kilowatts that your produce, which also means increasing the size of the wind turbine, you can greatly increase the savings. A three-kilowatt turbine will save you 30 to 60 percent. Additionally, the higher the electricity bill is, the more savings will be seen with a wind turbine.
Although there are costs involved in setting up large turbines for residential home use, there are also government incentives available. Homeowners should check with local and state governments before investing in a wind turbine to determine what offers they have.
Even a small wind-powered generator can save household money. A wind-powered generator could be used as a backup power source or to power outdoor work equipment. Any power taken while off the grid is a savings.
Another benefit for residential wind turbines is that they do not contribute to global warming, noise pollution, acid rain, or air pollution. This has been a concern for many years for nearly all of the other energy options available to homeowners.
Homeowners should be aware of the components of the wind power system and ensure they have a suitable location. The wind power system consists of the rotary (blades), the enclosure box, the tower, and the electrical components.
The tower should be situated so that it is above the tree line for optimal wind access. Other than the height of the tower, the wind power system will not be in the way of anything—you can even plant foliage right up to the base of the system.
One wind-powered turbine is not enough to power and entire city; however, wind-powered farms can create enough power to light up a city. These farms are being considered by many municipalities to provide a cheaper from of energy.
A wind farm is usually set up where there is a constant source of wind. Most of these farms have average wind speeds of 14 mph. One of the nice things about wind is that it is an inflation-free form of energy. Once the farms are built, there are no further costs involved.
These utility-sized wind turbines send their energy to nearby generator stations, where the power will be distributed throughout the area. This power created by these wind farms is a constantly renewable source of energy, particularly in windy areas.
Wind energy benefits everyone, from the person who installs it to the people who live with it and the people who do not. In addition to the benefits the household receives from using wind energy, the planet as a whole benefits from using a renewable energy source.
Renewable energy is not for the future; it is for now. Wind turbines are already producing power for entire towns and many homes. Wind power, along with solar power, is one of the most abundant free options for producing energy.
If you haven’t considered an alternate power source for your home, you should take the time to research wind and solar power. You can get a do-it-yourself kit and start saving money on power today. You will be off the grid and not dependent on the electric companies.
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