Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Solar Home Tour?
First off, it is FUN. A Solar Home Tour connects people, showing how we can better live with the sun by using renewable energy, efficiency, technology and just plain good ideas. Homeowners will be on hand to talk with tour participants, showing them what they are doing to live more sustainably. Certain locations may also feature experts to help answer questions about solar electric systems, alternative materials or various other items of interest.
This event is part of the American Solar Energy Society’s National Solar Tour, held in hundreds of cities across the nation. Over 160,000 people are expected to attend Solar Home Tours nationwide this year. This is 16th year for the National Solar Tour, and the 7th for Southern Nevada. How exciting!
Why should I make the time for this?
If you are interested in helping create a better life for yourself, your family and the future, this type of experience is a great way to learn. It’s time we focused on creating a sustainable society. The Solar Home Tour is an excellent opportunity to directly experience how more and more people in Southern Nevada are making a difference….for cleaner air, less waste, healthier living and long lasting economic rewards.
Why does the tour cost money?
A lot of work goes into producing the event and we want to make it a positive experience that provides real value to those who attend. As a small nonprofit organization, it is vital that we cover our costs so we can continue to promote renewable energy in Southern Nevada. For less than the cost of a movie ticket, a car full of tour goers get to meet some great folks, see some incredible technologies, and possibly even learn a few things of value to put into action for themselves.
What kind of homes will be featured?
A good tour is diverse, showcasing several locations featuring a wide variety of solar and green building strategies. It’s all about living well while using our resources wisely. Passive solar designs, active solar electric and thermal hot water systems, net zero energy homes, green built homes, alternative construction, water efficiency, xeriscape….these are some examples of what we like to feature on the tour.
Where will the tour take place?
The starting point is up to you. It is self-guided and there is no central starting point this year. Print and bring your guidebook, maps and directions with you. The homes on the tour are spread throughout the Las Vegas Valley. Some locations will be clustered near each other while others may be a fair distance away. This is one reason the tour is self-guided.
Each person or group gets to decide which sites to visit, how long to stay, and what order they see them in. It may be difficult to see every site on the tour so we encourage attendees to take some time in advance to browse through the tour guidebook to determine what is of greatest interest to you. Then plan your itinerary accordingly.
How do people get around on the tour?
The tour is self-guided, meaning that you can go to any site, in any order, at any time during tour hours (10:00 am – 4:00 pm). Please respect the homeowner’s time by only visiting during tour hours. We encourage car pooling and tour pricing is designed to reward those who do. We also encourage the use of alternative vehicles. Drivers of hybrid, electric or alternative fuel vehicles receive a $5 discount!
Where can I register for this?
Register for the tour at SolarNV.org. Be sure to register early since capacity is limited and some previous tours have sold out. Advance registration is required and can be done via our secure PayPal system. Print your receipt and bring it with you on tour day. After registering, you’ll be able to download an electronic version of the tour guide with details about each home. A map with addresses will be emailed to registered participants the day before the tour. Since the tour is self-guided, you can visit any of the homes between 10 and 4.
Can I suggest my home or someone else’s for consideration as a future tour site?
We encourage everyone to suggest potential homes to include on a future tour. Please contact Solar NV via email with your ideas. While not every home that is nominated can be included, we want to hear your suggestions. Each year’s tour requires a broad palette of homes to select from. We are also open to including appropriate business sites for consideration on the tour. If you know someone who is living with the sun effectively and efficiently, this could be your chance to make this event even better than the last one!