microFIT vs RRSP Conclusion?

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In the first of this three part article, we described a comparative investment to the microFIT renewable energy program for individuals; that being the Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) or the Spousal Retirement Savings Plan (SRSP). I suggest you refer back to the microFIT vs RRSP article for many details and assumptions, etc. I will also repeat a statement from that article: "Remember, everyone’s own personal situation is unique. Before you make any decision you should contact … [Read more...]


Euro and dollar symbol

I'll be direct. The point of this three part article is to simply make you consider alternative uses of money you might otherwise commit to a solar panel PV installation under the Ontario microFIT program. I am not for or against the microFIT program. As someone who is pro-energy conservation, I am glad there is some financial assistance for renewable energy generation. I am first and foremost for my family's own financial well being, as you should be for yours. As I haven't yet seen a … [Read more...]

Winter Is Coming – Bring Solar Lights and Batteries Inside

Solar Panel For Solar Charged Lawn Mower

Consider this your friendly neighborhood annual reminder. These days you will get a lot of people who have solar patio and garden lights on their properties to access their gardens or provide lighting along pathways and driveways. You might also have people who use a solar panel or two, like us, to charge the batteries of their electric cordless lawn mower. Well, do not let the batteries freeze. Yes, we have all noticed it is cooler in the early mornings now that the fall season … [Read more...]

Ontario microFIT Conditional Contracts Released En Masse?

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It has been about 6 weeks since I submitted my microFIT application on-line back towards the end of July. I have not received my conditional contract yet. The clock for the 40% Ontario content until 12-31-2010, rising to 60% Ontario content 01-01-2011 is ticking. And, I am not going to commit money to any installer until I have a conditional contract in hand. So, being the curious fellow that I can be at times, this past Friday (two days ago) I called up the OPA's microFIT Program … [Read more...]

Applying For A microFIT Solar Contract

To date in our continuing series on our possible participation in the Ontario Power Authority's microFIT renewable energy program we have written about receiving the OurPower on-line solar site assessment, the visit from one solar installation vendor and last time the details of his written solar site assessment for our home. Here's the thing; we do not have a contract or agreement with any solar power installation vendor. Yet, a few days ago I went ahead and submitted the microFIT … [Read more...]

microFIT On Site Roof Top Solar Assessment

South Facing Roof Around Mid-Morning

In our new series on determining if the Ontario Power Authority's (OPA) microFIT was financial viable within our personal risk tolerance for our house's roof, we detailed the OurPower online solar site assessment. This solar site assessment indicated we could anticipate, under normal amount of sun light for the Greater Toronto Area, about a 9 year financial payback (i.e, about 9 years for us to receive sufficient revenue under the microFIT program to pay for the entire estimated solar … [Read more...]

Home Solar Panel Electricity and MicroFIT

Earlier this week I wrote an article on Smart Meters and how old electromechanical electric meter was swapped out by our local utility for a new smart meter. A long time visitor to DailyHomeRenoTips.com, Vasile, left a couple of comments and then exchanged some emails with me 'off line' about my concerns on investing in solar panels to generate electricity. My personal subjective view is that yes, if every house has them we would be in much better shape environmentally. I think that's kind … [Read more...]

Solar LED Garden or Patio Border Lights from Canadian Tire

Pinnacle Solar LED Garden Light Tops

A few days ago I wrote about some solar LED lighting we received from our friends at Canadian Tire. First it was about the pair of LED lights connected to a separate solar panel to provide a large amount of light for your outdoor patio. Then it was about the pair of Emerald rocks containing a small solar panel on top and LED lighting on the side to provide accent lighting for your outdoor garden. Today I wanted to show you another type of solar powered LED lights available for the … [Read more...]

Improved Solar Charging Station Setup for Electric Lawn Mower

Solar Panel Resting on Metal Elbows

Yesterday I wrote about and showed the setup of the solar panel, solar charging station and batteries back in 2008 for our electric lawn mower. This setup was OK as it allowed us to operate our electric battery lawn mower without emitting any direct or indirect polluting emissions into the air as well as costing us noting to use the lawn mower. This year, I had a different idea for the setup. Back in 2008, the solar panel and charging station kit came with two metal elbows to support … [Read more...]

Solar Charging Our Electric Lawn Mower

2008 Solar Panel Setup

We have written over the past two years about the Solaris cordless electric, first in 2008 when the first model was introduced and again last year in 2009 when we received the new model. Part of our excitement back in 2008 was that this was the first mass produced electric lawn mower which came with an optional solar charging station. When used, this lawn mower then would cost absolutely nothing to operate as well as would generate absolutely no direct (compared to a gas powered lawn mower) … [Read more...]

Solar LED Accent Garden Lighting From Canadian Tire

Solar LED Accent Garden Lights From Canadian Tire

Yesterday we wrote about solar LED outdoor lighting we installed outside our basement sliding door walkout to eliminate the need for the motion sensor light in the summer and reduce the amount of electricity used in the home. Today we wanted to write about the solar LED accent garden lighting we received again from Canadian Tire. These are very attractive in what appears to be a small garden rock. The small solar panel is built into the top of the pretend rock powering the LED … [Read more...]

Solar Outdoor LED Lighting from Canadian Tire

Garden Fall Clean Up\Solar Air Heater and Pet

Last week we received three different types of solar outdoor lights from our friends at Canadian Tire to try. Yes, using solar outdoor lighting can be one way of reducing the amount of electricity used by a household from your local electric utility and thus save you money. Perhaps there is some contest which is looking for ideas on reducing the amount of electricity used in the home? ;) In our case there was our back yard. We have a walkout from our basement onto an interlocking brick … [Read more...]

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