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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Solar in the Spotlight – Boating with Sun Power

In recent years, terms like "going green" and "eco-friendly" have become more than just buzz words on talk shows, commercials and product packaging. From personal care items to energy-saving appliances, we are surrounded by options that help consumers not only save the Earth, but also save money.

Tûranor PlanetSolar, first boat to circle the globe with solar power
When it comes to environmentally friendly options, solar power is at the forefront. It’s no longer uncommon to see solar panels on roofs of neighboring homes or even large businesses. Solar power is being utilized everywhere- and our waterways are no exception. In 2013, the MS Turanor PlanteSolar, an 89,000 kg catamaran, completed its journey around the world utilizing solar power alone. And, throughout the US, solar ferries are being considered for public transportation needs.

Solar ferry boat
But it’s not just the big guys who are making the most of solar energy; boat owners can also take advantage of this option. Going solar offers many benefits. Not only does this alternative power protect the environment, it’ll save you money in the long run. Yes, the initial investment is higher, but once you’ve opted in, sun power is free!

Additionally, utilizing solar power allows boaters to access waterways that may otherwise be restricted. With environmental issues at the forefront, many lakes and rivers are not open to gas-powered boats, which can cause environmental pollution (and noise pollution).  Solar power is a pollution-free alternative.

For battery-operated watercraft, solar can top off batteries and increase longevity– extending your time on the water. When the sun is out, a solar panel provides a continuous trickle charge– charging your batteries nearly anywhere, anytime; on the trailer, at a mooring, docked in a slip, or even when you’re out driving. A small panel can eliminate the need for a bulky external charger, struggling with moving heavy batteries to and from the boat, and complete setbacks caused by dead batteries.
Consider a solar option for your current boat or next boat purchase. You’ll not only be helping the planet, but you’ll save some cash too!

boat buying guideThinking of buying a boat but not sure which option is right for you? Get your FREE Guide to Buying a Boat! From kayaks to solar fishing boats, you''ll get descriptions of the many boating and watercraft options, pros and cons, and more!