Frequently Asked Questions About Wind Energy and Wind Turbines

Wind Turbines and Wind Energy  - Know Watts What


For our most common questions, see our answers below. If you don’t see your question, you can always ask us directly or call us at 877.448.2526!

Wind Energy Costs

Wind Turbine Information

What is the average payback period for wind turbines?

The length of the payback period is dependent upon the unit itself, the quality of the turbine, electricity rates, wind at the installation site, financing options, and other incentives. The time it takes to fully recover your costs can range from 2 to 20 years depending on these and other factors. With a Wind Lease, you dont need to worry about getting the best financial return. This is because you are leasing the wind system, and only have to pay for the energy is produces. No upfront fees or maintenance required! We take care of all of that.

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What is a Wind Lease?

If you choose to sign a Wind Lease, you dont have to pay high upfront costs for equipment and installation. Instead, Talco pays to install and maintain the wind turbine. You’ll pay little to nothing upfront, and pay each month for the electricity that the wind turbine generates. With a Wind Lease, you are locked into low electricity rates for 10 years, meaning you’ll begin to save money on energy right away, and continue to save over the life of the wind system. While utility rates my rise unexpectedly, Talco’s rates will remain low and fixed. Get started with a free wind quote to see if wind energy will be right for you.

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What are my wind financing options?

We offer several affordable options for you to start generating clean, renewable energy. You may pay $0 down or opt for a “partial pre-pay” where you pre-pay for some of the electricity. You can also fully pre-pay for all of the energy so you’ll have no ongoing monthly payments. The lease payment combined with the new electric bill will be less than the current bill. See how much you can save using wind energy »

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How much does a wind turbine cost?

Wind turbine costs are completely unique to your individual goals, and will vary depending on system size, height, and installation costs. Remember that the turbine is only one component in the system, and you must consider permits, maintenance, and labor expenses to accurately asses overall costs. However, the federal government and many states have tax credit programs and other incentives to encourage investment in distributed wind. Talco also offers a leasing program for those who want flexible, affordable energy options. You can pay $0 up-front and pay just for the energy the turbine produces. This program typically saves thousands in energy costs each year and one of the most popular ways to save on energy with wind!

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What are wind turbines?

Wind turbines are electric generators that use wind energy to produce clean, emission-free forms of energy for farms, homes, and small businesses. With this increasingly popular technology, individuals can dramatically reduce energy costs while preserving the environment.

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What happens when the wind does not blow?

For grid-connected systems, the user will typically not notice a difference because the utility company still provides electricity to the property when the wind does not blow. Of course, charges will be incurred for any electricity used from the utility, unless there is a credit with the utility from any prior overproduction that may have occurred.

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What is distributed wind?

Distributed wind, also known as small wind or community wind,  is the use of typically smaller wind turbines at homes, farms, businesses, and public facilities to off-set all or a portion of on-site energy consumption.

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What do generator ratings tell me?

Generator ratings are a measure of the peak power each system can produce. Often times, manufacturers rate their systems by power, measuring its performance under peak output of the system regardless of wind speed. A turbine rated with a high kW power output does not necessarily mean it will be great at producing energy over a long time period because it is unlikely the high wind speeds in which it is rated will sustain given very few people live in regions with such conditions.

Think about your cars instrument panel. Lets say the speedometer reads 150 mph as the peak speed. This does not necessarily mean your car will ever reach this speed, but instead, that it has the capability of reaching this peak speed. The same idea goes for turbine generator ratings.

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What kind of restrictions are there for wind energy?

When planning a project, careful consideration is taken to zoning, permitting, noise, and land requirement laws which vary from place to place. Zone codes may impose specific regulations on land sizes and the distance the proposed turbine must be from the property line and may vary according to the size and height of the unit. Remember, it is essential for the turbine to be placed where there is no obstruction to wind access, which may require higher towers, large lots, and non-urban locations.

Talco works with the city to ensure proper permits are filed and your selected turbine will adhere to city ordinances. It is important to note that anything with moving parts will make some sound, however, Talco supplies only the quietest machines on the market which are likely to comply with city noise restrictions.

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How are wind turbines maintained?

Routine maintenance should be conducted once every year by a professional installer or trained technician for the life of the turbine. Maintenance consists of a physical inspection of the unit along with new technology that allows some turbines to be monitored remotely through a home computer. If you opt for a Wind Lease, Talco will take care of all the maintenance required for the life of the turbine.

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How come some turbines have two blades when others have three?

The number of blades depends on four factors: aerodynamic efficiency, component costs, system reliability, and aesthetics. Typically, the fewer the blades the lower the material and manufacturing costs will be. For 2 blade units, the primary advantage is the lightweight construction and less costly systems. These systems have longer blade widths to compensate for the lack of a third blade. Our most popular two blade wind turbine is the 11kW Gaia-Wind. We also carry the Vergnet 275 kW two blade wind turbine which is ideal for rugged terrain and hurricane prone regions.

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Why does an 11kw wind turbine cost so much more than a 10kw?

The incremental difference between a 10kW machine and a 11kW machine may seem very small, however, this is not the case. A 11kW machine can produce as much as twice the energy as a 10kW machine, making it a significantly more costly machine.

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What happens if I make more energy than I use? Will the utility send me a check?

Often times turbines can produce more energy than is consumed. In this case, any extra electricity is sent back to the grid and essentially “turns your meter backwards”. This creates a credit with the utility for future use when you consume more than you produce. Depending on your specific utility, they may pay you a wholesale rate for overproduction, while others may not.

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Tell us a little about your energy usage:

Each property is different, so we will begin by understanding your energy usage and your project goals. We will review historical energy usage to properly determine which turbine will be most suitable based on property size, energy consumption, and project goals. Please allow 1 business day for our team to gather necessary information to deliver the best pricing estimate possible.

Find out if wind is right for you with a FREE quote.

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