Lowe's Home Improvement

Wind Energy 101

Wind energy goes well beyond propelling sailboats and ships across the oceans. If cultivated properly, it has the potential to supply enough power for over five times the world's current energy consumption. Best of all, wind power consumes no fuel and emits no air pollution into the atmosphere. Learn how a wind turbine can help you utilize this great energy source in your home.

wind energy

Wind Energy Q&A


How long has wind energy been used?
Windmills have been used since the seventh century AD for irrigation and milling grain. The modern wind turbine dates back to 1887 when a Scottish academic conducted experiments that led to a UK patent in 1891. That same year, electricity was produced in the US using a wind-powered machine.

What is a wind turbine?
A wind turbine, similar to a windmill, is a rotary device that draws energy from the wind and then converts the energy collected into electricity.

How does a wind turbine work?
Wind turbines generate DC energy — the same energy that batteries use. An inverter box then converts the DC energy into AC energy, which is used by home appliances and electronic devices. The wind power then feeds your home through your service panel. When you generate excess electricity, it flows to the utility grid, making your electric meter run backwards.

What are the cost benefits of wind energy?
Federal, state, and local incentives combine to reduce cost by as much as 50% in some locations. This includes a federal tax credit of 30% for those who choose to use green energy. Furthermore, the cost of wind power always remains the same, whereas electricity rates are subject to variable increases.

How can wind energy be used?
Wind energy can be used to power home appliances, computers, televisions, and can even heat and cool your home.

Is wind energy right for me?
Here are four questions to ask yourself in order to determine if wind energy is the right option for you.

  1. Do you own your home?
  2. If you are a member of a Home Owners Association, does it allow for wind turbines to be installed?
  3. Is your average electric bill (not including gas) over $100 a month?
  4. Is your property size one acre or more?

If you answered “yes” to all of these questions, then wind energy may be the right option for you.

Wind and Solar Power