Do-it-yourself solar products sold in area

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) - Solar energy has long been seen as the way to go for saving the environment and money, but it's not just for industry anymore.

An advertisement in the Sunday paper a couple of weeks ago showed several solar products you can buy and install at home. The products could make your home more energy efficient and maybe even safer.

At the Menard's store in Oregon, Toledo News Now got an up-close look at them to see what they do, and if they are affordable. The biggest solar kit they have is $249 dollars, and it can be used to charge an emergency backup system, like a sump pump.

If a storm knocks out your electricity, the sump pump could run off of stored energy from the solar panels.

The smaller panels can be used to charge batteries for items around your home, and even for a low-voltage lighting system or your RV if you use one over the summer.

The smaller products are between $15 and $80, and Customers seem to be buying into the "green at home" idea.

"When we first started carrying them, nobody knew that we had them. They sat for a little while and once people started catching on that we did have these, more people started trickling in and now they are a little more difficult to even keep in stock so they are selling real well," said Dave Long, Menard's general manager.

The solar products are sold at all three local Menard's stores, and they say customers don't need a contractor to install them.

The solar panels are made by Coleman and they have their own display at the store. They also sell a 600 watt wind turbine to generate energy at home for $499.

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