Energy Tech Tips Community

Solar power does more than just save us money on energy bills. Whether you need to heat up a frozen pizza, charge you phone, or warm up a drafty room in your house, there are a lot of cool ways solar can help you throughout the day and lessen your impact. Check out these four ways to incorporate solar power into your daily routine:

1. Cook with a solar oven

Whether you’re planning a hike or patio lunch, solar ovens are an easy way to fix hunger without gas. These devices open up to capture sun rays, concentrating them directly towards a central oven. Here, sun rays are harnessed as thermal energy to superheat whatever is on the menu. You’re actually using a greenhouse effect to cook your food.

Choose to buy one sturdy enough for the trail, or make one at home—there are a many solar oven options out there.

2. Stay charged with a solar backpack

Put the sun on your back to good use. A solar backpack uses panels on it’s surface to charge an auxiliary battery inside. By the time your phone or laptop are out of battery, the pack is charged and ready to give each an extra boost. Wherever you’re going, there will always be a way to keep the devices you’re carrying up and running—freeing you from the next frantic search for a wall socket.

Backpacks are just the start. With panel efficiency going up, and costs down, solar tech is starting to show up in a variety of small products with touchpoints in your daily life. Curious where to start your next shopping spree? Check out some of the coolest options out there today.

3. Get free heat from a solar chimney

A solar chimney (or thermal chimney) can help improve natural ventilation in a building—saving on the energy you’d normally need to heat and cool indoors.

It starts with a tall, black-painted shaft attached and outside the structure. Black is used to absorb more of the sun’s energy over lighter shades. Throughout the day, the sun heats the chimney, creating an updraft, drawing air from the attached building.

The central benefits of a solar chimney include: increased air movement on still, hot days, greater air quality, and a reduction in traditional energy consumption—helping lower CO2 emissions and overall pollution.

4. Cut your energy bill down and support job growth

Where rooftop solar isn’t an option, a community solar project can take its place. Developers pool the panels needed to power a number of homes into one central location in the community. Local communities and households tap into a project, receiving the benefits and savings from its power being distributed directly into a local grid. Best of all, these projects are available for everyone, including renters, apartments, and tiny homes.

With Arcadia, you can tap into these projects for free—collecting the savings generated from your panels on each of your monthly electric bills. Support clean energy and check your eligibility in 2 minutes here.