It Ain't Easy Living Green

Off Grid Power Sources

Living a tiny life appears romantic on the surface, but it is seldom easy. There are so many things we take for granted in our daily lives when we’re attached to the grid and someone else is taking care of us. Every time we flip the light switch, or turn on the faucet, we don’t think about what is involved in making these things happen.

Living off the grid comes with it’s complications. Generating power, collecting and storing water, waste disposal, etc. Generating power depends on your location. If you live in a state like Florida or California where you can rely on lots of sunshine, solar power is a great choice. If you live in windy states like Wyoming or Arkansas, a wind generator can be very reliable. My favorite way to generate power is with a Pelton wheel, but that requires a steady flow of water from a nearby stream or creek. But in order to generate enough power for all the electronics and appliances we’ve grown accustomed to, you’ll have to decide on a combination of these power sources. Then you’ll need to decide on a battery bank to store the power, an inverter/charger to change the battery power to alternate current and to keep the batteries charged and maintained. Taking care of a system like this can be fun, but at the same time tedious.

Then there’s the question of where your water will come from. Obviously living in Phoenix, Arizona is going to be more complicated than living in a wet environment like the Pacific northwest. If your property has a freshwater source like a spring or a creek you just need a way to pipe it into your home. You also have the option of collecting and treating rainwater. Which oddly enough has become illegal in some states.

Having a good plan is essential to setting up the right systems that will serve your needs in an efficient way for years to come. In the end how tiny a life you want to live is entirely up to you. The important thing is that you make an impact in some way, no matter how small.