As energy costs continue to grow more expensive , off grid living becomes appealing to more and more people. You can now very easily unplug from the power grid and produce 100% of your own energy. If you size the system appropriately, you can use solar panels or wind turbines to produce all of your own power. By producing some of your own electricity, you can take at least a small step towards off grid living.
Let’s start by talking about solar power. Solar panels are a great option for supplying power to many homes and can work in all parts of the world, even in remote areas or places with a harsh environment. Some hardware and plenty of sun are the only requirements. If you'd like to build your own solar panel, the best guide I've found is GreenDIYEnergy Review . A solar power system can be as small or big as you want and can also be made portable if you are mobile. Solar panels need very little maintenance, are tough and will last 20 or more years if taken care of.
Some number of solar panels wired together are primary part of any solar power system. In order to produce maximum power, solar panels in the northern hemisphere should be pointed due south. Some solar power systems use panels that rotate so they always point directly at the sun, though with more recent solar panels this is less important than it was with older panels. As long as modern solar panels are pointed directly south and are at the right vertical angle, stationary panels will work just fine. For an article about how to build your own solar panel, visit Build a Solar Panel .
Since solar cells produce Direct Current (DC), the electricity produced by solar cells can be used to power any DC appliance or to charge batteries. Electricity can be provided at night or when the sun isn’t shining by charging batteries during the day.
In order to provide power to standard AC appliances, you will need to use a power inverter. A power inverter can convert DC electricity coming from either the solar panels or batteries in AC electricity.
Another way to generate power to enable you to live off grid is with a wind turbine. Modern wind turbines are fairly small and very efficient and can be mounted on a tower, a pole or in some cases even the roof of your house. If you want to generate power at night as well as during the day, wind turbines can do this which is an advantage over solar panels. As long as the wind is blowing, a wind turbine can produce electricity. For information about making a diy wind generator, check out Earth4Energy Review
Some people use a wind turbine together with solar panels. You can use the same power inverter and batteries with both solar and wind and this setup can give you the best of both worlds. If it is sunny and calm, the solar panels will provide most of the power and if it overcast and windy or at night the wind turbine will take over.
For people wanting to live the off grid lifestyle, either of these systems can provide enough power. They will let you take your first step towards completely pulling the plug.
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