This sound good?
Okay, so I've been researching solar power/heating/cooling for the past few months trying to determine if it's something my husband and I can do in the house we'll begin building in the next 12 months.
We plan on trying for basic passive solar design. That's an easy enough thing to do.
However, we had also hoped to do active solar building and have always discussed employing a grid-tied photovoltaic roof system for harvesting electricity. We also wanted radiant heat flooring, instant water heater, etc. It was going to be expensive, but with rebates and tax incentives we figured it would be doable, and HEY! We'll have no utility bills!
Not so. Apparently SC doesn't allow net-metering, which is the main plus for PV solar power. SC also doesn't offer any rebate incentives, so the ONLY rebate we'd get is the Federal one for $2000.
So, I believe we're going to try and do these following things to have an energy efficient household - let me know if there are any other easy/good things we can do or have built in to the house:
1) East/South low-e windows with long eaves providing summer shade
2) Solatubes and skylights wherever feasible for natural daylighting
3) 2x6 framing with foam insulation
4) Ceiling fans and an open staircase for better air circulation
5) Grain or pellet stove for winter heat when needed
6) Radiant heat flooring in north section of house
7) Fluorescent light bulbs throughout house (which we already use)
Any other cost-effective ideas for handling the SC climate (hot humid summers, mildly cold winters with occasional snow/ice storms)?