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6 tips for using renewable energy

Many people are interested in using renewable energy, but they don’t know where to begin. Here are six tips from the Midwest Renewable Energy Association:
  • Be an educated consumer

    Learn as much as possible to make decisions about renewable energy technologies and what may work on your site. Attend workshops and training sessions such as the MREA’s annual Energy Fair to learn about available technologies, expected returns, and site requirements. 

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014
  • Get a site assessment

    The best way to evaluate your location is to bring in an expert to assess your energy needs, to provide energy efficiency suggestions, and to make recommendations for specific renewable systems that are right for your situation. 

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014
  • Seek an installer

    Unless you have extensive experience in renewable energy systems installation, hire a professional. Get more than one estimate to determine the cost for hardware, shipping, installation labor, connection to a utility grid, travel, and any taxes or permits.

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014
  • Check zoning, utility policies, and legalities

    A renewable energy system should comply with local building codes and zoning. Check with local authorities for any regulations on renewable energy systems. Contact your utility for details about connecting to your power grid and net-metering options. Be sure to contact your insurance provider to learn whether homeowners or liability policies cover a proposed renewable energy system.

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014
  • Secure financing

    There are many options for financing renewable energy projects, including home equity or capital improvement loans, and grants and other incentives to help offset installation costs. Visit www.dsireusa.org for information about incentive programs available in your state.

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014
  • Learn maintenance steps

    Get written, detailed instructions from your installer on how to maintain your system properly and safely. Monitor net-metering systems and utility bills to make sure you receive proper credits for the energy you produce.

    Date Published: August 29, 2013
    Date Updated: December 26, 2014

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