Keep yourself clear of these helpful hints
When you are first considering going off the grid, the most intense and critical part is determining what renewable energy source is best. Of course, you will want to get the advice of others to help you with you decision.
However, it is not always to the benefit of those who receive the information to take it. Here are 10 “Friendly” pieces of renewable energy advice that you should never take.
1) All renewable energy is essentially the same
There is a mindset that all renewable energy works essentially the same. Where it is true that you are working to have energy which will be converted to power, the methodology in which you gain the energy is different.
For example: Solar Power is collected from panels and stored where a hydropower uses a turbine and the flow of the water to make power. Some systems are cheaper and some are more expensive.
Each element converts renewable energy differently and should be evaluated for its availability as well as its functional relevance to your geographic location.
2) Solar Power is the cheapest way to get your renewable energy
Just because something is the most popular does not make it the best financial investment. Many a times the solar panels will be more expensive than the other renewable energy services simply for the fact that they know the demand for the solar panels is high.
Realistically, hydropower is the cheapest form of renewable energy if you have the water source in which to set it up.
The ROI and the overall financial setups of solar panels vary. However, remember that you have other renewable options.
3) You don’t need to get another quote because I know this guy is professional
You should always get a minimum of three quotes. If you only have one quote and that provider knows that you have not shopped around you can guarantee that your quote will be high.
Also, by getting multiple quotes you can gauge the quality of the work. Quotes which are substantially lower than most of the quotes may be cutting corners in order to get the job done. You want quality work not the cheapest work done.
4) Buy a big inverter as you may want to expand your solar panels later
Unless you are planning to expand within the next year, this is a waste of money. Furthermore, you should plan to get the panels that you need from the start.
Planning for another day will just mean that you put off the extra panels indefinitely. When planning for a sustainable system gets everything at the start.
5) It is not necessary to get an energy efficiency survey
It is not only financially responsible to get an energy survey but also a survivalist must. As a survivalist, you want to ensure that your energy efficiency is at its highest.
You do not want to be dependent or needy of energy. Furthermore, the less energy you use the smaller the system you will need.
6) Wind power is too expensive to use as a renewable energy source
Not only is wind a viable solution to your energy efficiency needs, but implementing the system can be done with a variety of systems.
True, if you have the space to put in a large wind turbine then you will have more power, but you can create energy from a small windmill like set up just as easily.
7) I have to commit to one renewable energy source.
Renewable energy can be diversified to many different sources. You can have a hydropower system to warm your floors and to use with your aquaponics system and have solar power to use for your primary energy.
Do not limit yourself to a specific source. Off grid living is about finding solutions and thinking outside of the box. If you limit yourself to only one source you are doing yourself an injustice.
8) The location of your solar panels does not affect your energy efficiency
The placement of your panels is paramount to the efficiency of your system. Panels which are placed upon the north most side of the roof will be those which (typically) receive the most exposure to the sun and therefore provide the most power.
You will not want to allocate this space to frugal energy (such as heating a pool) but rather to necessary power (such as heating your water heater).
9) It is cheaper to stay on the grid
Where it may be true that your startup costs will be quite large, the overall savings and sustainability is worth it. Consider your power and utilities will run you about $500 a month or more.
The startup system for renewable energy typically runs about 10k. However, once this system is paid for then you have $0 utilities to worry about. Not being tied to the government is essential to off grid living.
10) Install it yourself if you really want to have it done right
This is by far the dumbest idea that you can buy into. Unless you know exactly what you are doing (and the odds are that you do not have a clue on how to set up your renewable energy system professionally) then you are only setting yourself up for failure if you attempt to do so yourself.
Get a professional to install the system and show you how it works. You can only be successful with off grid living if your off grid living system is functional.
These are only a few of the “friendly” pieces of advice which you should never take. Remember that your power is your responsibility.
Take the time to do a bit of research as to what is factual, what is fiction, and what is just complete nonsense. I am sure that you will find that your living will be better for it.