LA FERIA — It was a warm afternoon, somewhere in the mid 70s, and the sun was hitting Don Schwanke as he sat outside.

It didn’t bother Schwanke. He was excited because he was watching a small business called Solar Bond install panels on his roof.

His house is going to produce its own energy with the heat of the sun using the solar panels.

“Most people are in the dark about solar power,” he said.

The La Feria resident purchased 48 solar panels and he plans on never paying for electricity ever again after they are all installed.

Schwanke said he will be putting more solar power than he’s using into the power grid.

“I’m putting free electricity back into the grid,” he said. “I expect not to be paying any energy by this week.”

Over the years, Schwanke said, he’s paid about $4,000 a year in electricity, amounting to about $40,000 over 10 years. He believes by installing these solar panels he eventually will save more than it cost him to pay for the panels.

In his case, all the electricity for his house is going to depend on the sun’s heat from here on out.

The energy he doesn’t use will be saved to meet his future electricity needs.

He said the cost of the project was $50,000 and over time he will be saving far more than he ever spent for energy.

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