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3 Green Technologies For Your Puerto Vallarta Home That Will Save You Money

Green technologies and systems’ story started hundreds of years ago, but it was until the 90’s when everything started to come together, and it has become a big trend in construction in the last few years due to climate change, global warming, oil dependence, water efficiency problems, and many other issues that the countries in the world are trying to fix or turning back.

The existing smart and green technologies make buildings more energy-efficient and sustainable. They have a lower carbon footprint therefore they are able to reduce the impact on the environment. But the benefits don’t stop with better preservation of the available resources and the planet, there are also considerable benefits from the application of green construction technology for developers and property owners that include potential money savings, economic incentives given by the government of their country, and even an increase on the value of their property.

In Puerto Vallarta, just like in the whole country, and even the whole world, developers, architects and investors are committed to new green technologies and systems, that are resulting in the creation of new smart and sustainable buildings, such as Avida Residences, the first building in the Puerto Vallarta Real Estate market that is committed to the LEED certification.

There is all sort of options of sustainable appliances that can be used for your home that will not only help to reduce your consumption of brown energies but that also will end up in big money savings. Here we put up a list of three more popular green technologies:

Solar Energy

According to the information provided by the Global Solar Atlas, Mexico with an average of 5.5 kilowatts hours per square meter, is one of the countries with more solar radiation around the world. This radiation can be transformed into electrical energy o heating. Even though we are one of the countries with the higher radiation according to the ASOLMEX until 2019 Mexico only has an installed capacity of 4.05 GW that compare to China’s installed capacity of 175 GW, we have still a lot to do.

According to Business Insider, the power of the sun that strikes the earth in just one hour is more than the necessary consumption of energy of the whole planet in a full year. In order to turn solar radiation into energy, we need solar panels, that through semiconductors absorb the sunlight and knock its electrons loose, creating solar energy that can be used as energy at our home.

Solar energy panels in a house
Photo by Vivint Solar on Unsplash

Debunking the Myths of Solar Panels

Using renewable forms of energy isn’t a new thing anymore, the popular use of solar panels for light production started around 1970 when the energy crisis emerged, and even though through the years multiple studies have shown the benefits of using them, till this days there is still skepticism surrounding the benefits gained from solar energy. This skepticism is due to several myths and misconceptions about solar panels and solar energy such as panels will cause damage to your roof or being a source of pollution, and our nature to resist change. Here we will debunk 3 of the most popular myths:

1. Do Solar Panels Work on Cloudy Days?

The short answer is yes they do. There are people who say that they do work but that the efficiency during cloudy days isn’t as good as on sunny days. The truth is that solar panels work on sunny, cold, and even cloudy days. The technologies of solar panel systems allow them to work effectively and efficiently in any weather. In addition, cloudy weather does not inhibit the efficiency of solar panels; they can be a viable source of electricity as they can still produce enough power. 

2. Are Solar Panels a Ripoff?

No is not, installing solar panels is more affordable now than ever due to installation costs dropping in the whole world by over 70 percent in the last decade. The cost depends on the number of solar panels that your home needs, the minimum of solar panels that a property needs to be considered as a system is 4 and the average cost per panel is about $600 USD already considering the cost of other components that are needed for the installation. At first, it might sound like a big inversion, and it is, but in about 3 years you will have a return on investment and in the next years all you will get are savings and free electricity.

3. Installing solar is complicated and requires a lot of maintenance

A solar system life expectancy is between 25 to 30 years but in order to achieve it and maintain its efficiency, a good installation and the correct maintenance are needed.

You might think that installing a solar panel system is difficult, but actually, it is relatively simple. If you hire an expert contractor, they can install the system on your roof in one day. If you opt to save money and chose to do it by yourself, all you need to do is follow the installation instructions, and make sure that both the roof and electrical panels can support the new solar panels. The installation time will depend on the number of solar panels that you’re installing, but it can be done in three days tops.

Solar Panel maintenance isn’t as hard as they say, but it must be done. In order to get a high-function system, the panels need to be completely clean at all times. If not, it will start producing less energy and the undersupply can be between 15% to 30%. This maintenance consists of dust off the panels once a month and removes from the surface any kind of object or dirtiness like leaves or bird droppings.

We suggest you hire someone who has experience in giving maintenance to panels but if you want to do it by yourself then you should do it with a wet flannel and always being careful of not damaging or causing microfractures to the surface of the panel or even to the roof. But if you want to avoid this chore, keep in mind that nowadays there are some companies that produce self-cleaning solar panels

Rainwater Collection System

The world’s water crisis is worsening each day and in Mexico, Day Zero is coming close, that’s why now more than ever having a rain collection system is needed and can help mitigate the effects of water scarcity. According to Arturo Gleason a researcher from the UDG, the city with the best rain collection system in Mexico City, and even so, there are only about 5,000 properties that have adopted the technology, on the other hand in Jalisco there are only about 10 properties using these systems.

Puerto Vallarta has a typically tropical climate with a rainy season that runs from June through October, the yearly approximate rainfall is 1497 mm that can be used to supply free water to our home. Installing a rain harvesting system will cost you between $500 and $750 USD and it will turn your house into a self-supply water home, but what are some other benefits?

Green technologies: Rain Harvesting System

Benefits of Rain Harvesting

The water from rain is relatively clean and free

Achieve self-sufficiency while conserving the planet 

Is a better source for irrigation because it isn’t chlorinated 

It’s an inexpensive technology that needs low maintenance

Help reduce the consumption of water therefore large money savings 

Rainwater can be an excellent backup fount of water for emergencies 

Main Methods of Rainwater Collection

1. Cisterns: There are tens of cistern brands available in the market with different sizes, but a common cistern holds about 1000 gallons. To use this method you should place the cistern directly under a downspout, or leaving it in an open area close. Make sure the cistern is raised off the ground so that gravity can do its job and consider attaching a hose to it.

2. Rainwater collection system:  These are large underground tanks that when it rains, the water is directed to the tanks and when the water is needed it has to travel along with a system that filters and pumps the water for theirs use. This type of collection system is much pricier and will need to be installed by a professional.

Motion Sensor for Lights 

Have you ever been in a place such as bathrooms, porches, or even rooms where lights automatically go on when you enter or step onto it? Well those are motion sensor lights and they have multiple benefits

Motion Sensor for Lights Benefits

No more leaving the lights on for hours or even days

Say goodbye to light button switches

Consume less electricity, use only the necessary

Deter criminals and avoid potential robberies

Helps you monitoring any movement inside or outside the house

Choosing your lights and installation

When you’re looking for motion sensor lights you should start by choosing the type of lights you want, it can be led, incandescent, or fluorescent, once you have selected your type of light you should choose the lights pattern, the options you can find at stores are the typical light pattern that gently disperses throughout a room or a floodlight which illuminates a larger space, or a spotlight that puts an intense focus on one specific area. It depends on the use you want to give to the motion sensor lights which light pattern you have to select. And finally, you should select the power source, you can find 3 different,  battery lights, wired lights, or solar-powered lights.

Once you have your lights, it’s time to install them, we recommend hiring a contractor, but if you want to do it by yourself then the only thing you should do is to follow closely the instructions.

Conclusions on Green technologies: 

As we already saw green technologies and systems are friendly not only to the planet but they are also wallet-friendly. Puerto Vallarta is a perfect place to have a house or condo with these 3 green technologies installed due to its privileged location, so don’t overthink it and install your solar panels right away, we guarantee you this will be one of the best inversions of your life.

Also if you are looking for a condo or house that is already sustainable don’t hesitate to contact one of our agents, here in Mexlife Realtors our goal is to help you find the ideal home for you.

We help our clients buy, sell, and invest in Puerto Vallarta and surrounding areas.

Partner with a team dedicated to being there for you from start to finish.