10 Green Kitchen Construction Materials

Solar Window Shutters

Solar power is no longer reserved for the extremely wealthy, or homeowners willing to stick solar panels on their roofs. Just about anyone can reap the benefits of solar power by installing solar window shutters.

Solar window shutters do just what you think: They make energy. While you're walking through the kitchen, making coffee or checking the crock pot, the shutters are busy collecting solar rays. Like solar panels, the shutters harvest electrons straight from the particles of sunlight hitting them. Then, they queue the electrons into a straight line, otherwise known as a current, and voila: electricity. This electric current can be wired to supply your plugs just like energy you would buy from a utility company. So the next time you would use your microwave or other kitchen appliance, your energy might come totally from the shutters' current. And that means you're not paying for it.

A few companies, such as Colt, offer window shutters that closely resemble familiar blue solar panels. Others, such as Plug 'n Save, offer shutters that are built to mimic the appearance of typical wooden shutters you might find on any home.

Neither company will release pricing information unless you make a serious query into purchasing them, but expect to pay more than typical window shutters. But here's one way to save a little: Don't bother installing them on windows that usually sit in shade all day.