Thursday, March 10, 2011

Like spilling money on the ground

One of the things I can't understand about Florida is how so much of this sunshine goes to waste. Why aren't there solar panels on almost every roof? Okay, solar electric used to be a bit pricey, but what about hot water heating? Something as simple as a primitive batch water heater could provide most hot water needs. Payback time would be measured in months. A home handy person, using some salvaged materials, could get their investment back the first month.

I make solar electric work in northern NH. Snow has to be cleared off the panels to harvest every watt. Battery banks have to be protected from freezing.

Solar water heating up north? I've got a batch water heater. It works for about 3 months of the year. The rest of the time, my water gets a thermal boost from a coil on the woodstove.

Solar works for me, but it takes planning and a bit of effort. Down here in Florida, there's so much sun and warmth that even a less than optimum installation is worth doing.

It's pretty much a truism that solar power isn't worth mounting on electric cars. The vehicles are too heavy and the space for mounting panels is too limited. Most days, I drive around here in an electric golf cart. Golf carts don't weight that much. Speed is limited, sipping electric power. There's enough roof space on them to install sufficient panels to make it worth while, at least for most distances traveled.

Don't even get me started on windows that don't open and the reliance on air conditioning.

Just hate to see a renewable resource going to waste.



  1. have noted on many trips about florida the same; have asked various people whynot and usually they couldn't either be bothered or made some excuse about such systems would devaluate the property in the real eastate games,,,

    too much sun must make them crazy,,,


  2. When we camp, a black painted water hose and gallon jug left in full sun will provide for a quick shower.

    Same should be said for Texas, a lot of sun and wind down here. Environmentalists made a big stink about wind farms killing wildlife with spinning turbines, but c'mon, birds have been around millions of years, a turning blade seems to be an obstacle they can overcome pretty handily.

  3. Why haven't I done something, just lazy I guess. Maybe I should, would help some on those 2 and 3 hundred dollar monthly electric bills.

  4. I wonder the same thing down here in south Texas. I especially wonder at all the dark colored roofs! Pure stupidity! A lot of it has to do with city ordinances, put in place by fancy pants rich boys who don't want "eyesores" to muck up their precious view. The rest comes from power companies and back room deals. They "legislate" away the competition...

  5. One would think we are quickly getting to the point where stupid zoning laws that prevent energy savings would be repealed. Soon, they'll just be ignored.

  6. Always wondered the same thing Sixbears. All those people so dazed by bikini clad bimbos and other assorted novelties distracts them from real opportunities. In some regards it would be so easy to be energy independent there and grow food year round to boot!

  7. Rush L. lives here, Don't think his kind of people would allow anything green besides money.

    How short sighted are they ? All that cash just falling from the sky every day.