It's becoming more and more common in today's technologically advanced society for people to gravitate towards a lifestyle set in nature--one that doesn't depend on the rest of the world for any day to day needs. Known as off-grid living, this back-to-basics way of life is not only independent--it's earth-friendly as well. Off-grid cabins that have power don't get it from utility companies--they're powered by green power sources that conserve energy and in the long run, save money as well. If you're wondering how you can get your own power in an off-grid cabin, read on. Featured below are three excellent off-grid power source options.
Hydropower is a very green source of power, as long as you have a continually flowing water source such as a river, creek, or stream on or near your property. A hydropower system takes water run-off from a dam and uses a turbine to change that water into usable energy. Once the falling water spins through the blades of the turbine, the usable energy is carried into your home via a generator. You need free access to a moving water source in order for hydropower to power-up your cabin, so it's important to check with your local DNR before investing any time or money into a hydropower system.
Solar power is the most popular power source for off-grid cabins. Unlike water, there's no regulations placed on sunshine--and it's almost always readily available regardless of where you live. To get solar power in your cabin, you must install a system that consists of solar panels, batteries, and an inverter. A fairly large system is required if you want to be able to use large appliances--and while the initial investment might seem rather hefty, it is a system that will save you a lot of money down the road. Solar panels capture sunlight in special cells known as photovoltaic cells. The solar panel system then transforms the absorbed light into energy for your cabin. There are many systems available if you want to use solar power, so it's important to figure out what you need and compare all of your options before you decide which system would be the best one for your cabin.
Another option for powering an off-grid cabin is wind power. Wind is turned into usable energy in a fashion that's similar to hydropower systems--only using wind instead of water. The turbine rotors of a windmill or wind tower spin as wind passes through them. This rapidly moving energy then enters into a generator that is situated inside the wind tower. From there it goes through the power lines and into your cabin. Wind towers work great providing there's enough wind to keep them going--they're efficient and cheap once the initial investment is paid off.
The location and size of your cabin, along with the amount of power you expect you'll need are the main factors you should consider if you're trying to determine the best power source option for living off-grid. While one may be a better option for your situation than another, any of these options will save you money and allow you to live free and green.
Guest post from Bailey Harris. Bailey writes for www.AreaRugs.com.