Taking The Off Grid Plunge. *Gulp*

Well. We’ve done it. There’s no backing out now.

We just bought a 1000 watt solar kit to get us off the grid.

I have to be honest. I’m a little freaked out. Excited, yes. But there are still a few important things we have to get figured out. That’s what makes me nervous.

Before pouring ourselves into studying off grid systems, we had no clue how much electricity we were using. Sure, we could look on our power bill and see what our average kWh usage was, but that didn’t really mean anything to us. It was intangible. It held no physical value.

Of course we knew the more kWh we used, the more we were billed. We got that. But who the heck knows how many kilowatts each appliance uses every time you turn it on? We sure didn’t.

Now that we are limiting ourselves to so many kWh per day, that number is going to matter. Big time.

Whereas running water was just a given to us up until now – something intangible brought it to us effortlessly-, now running water will be supplied by some immediately measurable amount of energy- either by manual pumping or by the precious drops of sunshine we hope to get- both of which will be very tangible.

I’m no expert (which is a major reason I’m so freaked out about all of this), so I am in no position to explain any of the technical stuff that goes along with solar power. But there are a couple of really important things that I’ve learned so far.

Understanding Energy Consumption

One important equation we had to learn was 1 kWh (kilowatt hour) = 1000 watt hours. 1 kWh is the same as 1000 watts used over the space of one hour.

Why is this important? Because our electricity usage (measured in kWh) will now be limited to the amount of watts our solar panels can deliver on a daily basis.

According to our power company, we use an average of 1380 kWh per month. Multiply that by 1000 and we can figure we use an average of 1,380,000 watt hours per month. Can that be right? How it’s even possible that we’re using that much electricity, I have no stinking idea.

Obviously, a lot is going to have to change.

Since our system is made up of four 270-watt panels, we should be able to generate 1080 watts per hour in full sun (which will be more like 1000 watts or so after some energy is lost as it is delivered to the appliances).

The amount of sunlight we get will determine how much energy we’ll generate. The more sun we get, the more things we can run. The less sun, the less we can run. Our area gets an average of 4-5 hours of full sun daily. (This assumes the panels will be south facing at an angle which will get the most sunlight.) So, we can hope to average 4000-5000 watts a day.

Eyes glossing over yet?

I’ll go on for those who are still following me.

Okay, so for an average 30 day month that’s about 120,000 to 150,000 watts per month, or 120 to 150 kW. Assuming there were no really cloudy days. That’s a whole lot less than what we’re using now. We’re gonna have to learn to live without a lot of things.

Bye-bye unlimited power.

Basically, that’s how I understand what we’re looking at as far as energy consumption goes. I can very well be missing something. I really have no clue what I’m talking about, so feel free to inform me.

What Pushed Us Over The Edge?

As I’ve ranted before, our recent $300 power bill really hit us hard. Then this month we got notice that beginning April 1st, our monthly co-op membership fees will be increasing, as will our hourly rates as well. It’s all just going to keep getting more and more expensive.

Some people with solar panels choose to stay connected to their utilities. They have what’s called a grid-tied system. Whatever extra energy they produce is fed back to the grid, and many power companies will actually pay you for that overage.

We don’t have that option.

Even if we used zero electricity from the power grid… if we produced 100% of our energy needs… we’d still have to pay $60/mo in fees just for staying connected. Not a very good deal for us.

Our average power bill is $250/mo. It’s crazy, I know. And I don’t even feel like we use that much electricity! Multiply that by 12 months, and we pay around $3,000/yr to our power company. And with rates climbing it’ll only get worse.

The solar kit we bought from a local solar company cost us $4650. That means that in a year and a half it will have paid for itself.

Weighing our options:  Keep paying out the wazoo every month indefinitely OR Invest that money into something that will save money over time.

We chose what made the most sense for us.

(Boy what I wouldn’t give to go back and start with solar from the beginning. If only we’d known.)

cloudy day

 Backup For Cloudy Days

Of course we’ll have a backup power supply for the days when the sun just isn’t shining enough to produce anything. This is where the battery bank comes into play.

To explain things more accurately, the energy supplied to our home will come directly from deep-cycle batteries (much like golf cart batteries). Everything will be run on batteries. The solar panels will charge the batteries, which are connected to an inverter. The inverter changes the energy from DC (direct current) to AC (alternating current) which is what our household appliances run on.

When the sun isn’t out we’ll still have energy stored in the batteries, but only a couple of days’ worth. You can’t completely drain the battery bank (a series of batteries connected together) or you’ll kill your batteries. If they start getting low, and there’s no sign of the sun still, we’ll use our generator to charge the batteries.

The more panels you have, the more energy you can generate. The more batteries you have, the more energy you can store.

Our system is pretty small. We hope to add a few more batteries (not cheap) and maybe a couple more panels over time. We’ll see how we manage with what we have, and work up from there.

Using a generator isn’t ideal to me, but it’s really no different than what we do now when we lose power and have to crank it up. Hopefully we won’t have to use it often, but it’s nice to know we have a backup.

What Can We Run?

We’re still trying to determine what we’ll be able to run, and what we won’t. For the appliances we currently have which carry too heavy of a load (use too much energy) we’ll have to put alternatives in place.

The list of things we won’t be able to run on this system is significant, but there are many options that we are weighing, which I’ll go over further in another post.

I imagine this will be the first of many updates regarding our life off the grid. We’ll get our kit from the manufacturer in about a week, and then it’ll take some time for us to get everything in place and ready to run. It could very well be the end of the year before we make the final call to our power company to come and disconnect us. We want to be 100% sure we’re ready before we cut the cord for good.


Wish us luck!

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63 thoughts on “Taking The Off Grid Plunge. *Gulp*”

  1. I am so excited for you! I wish I could convince my husband to do the same. I am working on it. It is an adjustment, but I believe you’ll get used to it and then think… how did I not do that long ago. Good luck!

  2. What home kit did you purchase and why? My family is looking to do the same, and I was curious what you came up with and reason you chose that system.

    • Lizziebug,

      I’m going to write a post soon on the kit we bought and everything that came in it. We chose to go with the kit because it was pre-wired and we could install it ourselves instead of hiring a contractor to install a system for us (which saved us a lot of money). As of right now it’s all set up and running our chest freezer and fridge with an extension cord plugged into the inverter. It isn’t wired into the house yet simply because we aren’t ready to go 100% off grid, but at least we are making use of the system in the meantime. Keep your eye out for an update!

  3. I’m glad to hear this. I remember reading your post about the smart meter and thinking, “in the end, the public won’t stand a chance. They’ll pretend to listen, nod their heads, and do it anyway.” I’m not sure if that factored in (since you were allowed to opt out by paying a fee), but it bothers me that the public is increasingly bulldozed into options that suit only those making the money. Anyway, another great post loaded with useful information.

  4. Not sure if you’ve seen the site, ‘Build it Solar’, but they have a lot of DIY solar ideas with mostly free plans available, (the links to Homepower magazine usualy require a membership or subscription in order to see the articles or plans).
    For example, the hot water heating section,

    Their blog is informative as well and give real world results with various solar projects.

    Have fun,

  5. This is very interesting to me, but we’re not sure if solar is the way to go for us. We have a beautiful west-facing roofline that gets a lot of sun exposure, but are the panels too heavy for our house? What about wintertime (not only lack of sun, but heavy snow accumulating on the panels)?

    Thank you for sharing how much your system cost you. I’ve read other blogs where they use solar, but don’t disclose the cost and I get to wondering just how expensive start up is.

    Best wishes on your endeavor. May it be profitable in many ways!

    • Kate,

      Our roof splits, half east facing, half west facing. We’re going to put two panels on each side, and hope that works. The panels are made to be mounted on roofs, and shouldn’t be too heavy for a standard home. These also carry a snow load… not sure of the weight but I just remember I was impressed with how much weight these can handle and even how big of hail it can withstand. In the wintertime we expect to have a very limited amount of power. Eventually we’d love to put in a small wind turbine to generate power during the winter, and stormy days. Thank you so much for your kind wishes. I hope you are able to find the right fit for your situation as well.

  6. I love it every time I see another person go off grid! We are trying to get there, too. My fiance is learning to make our own solar panels while we also work on weaning ourselves off of as many electric sucking appliances as possible. As we eliminate one electric appliance at a time, in exchange for manual power, we have been shocked at how much electric each one had been pulling! Even the blower on my wood stove was pulling $5 per month and amazingly, since I unplugged the fan, it is actually heating the house better! Plus, it heats up enough that I can do most of my cooking in/on it, further saving having to use electric for the stove.
    The best of luck to you all! And I applaud you!!!

  7. Is that bill just for gas/electric? Holy moly! We only pay about $70-ish per month for our family of 7 and we are a techie family, 2 computers, laptops, mobile devices, 5 phones and all home cooked meals using the gas. Of course we don’t really heat or cool our home either, maybe a day or two of heat and fans a year.

    One small thought about ditching the washing machine…Having spent a year living in the middle of rice paddies in a third world country a few years ago on a mission project with our family of then 4 kids, having to hand pump and haul all our water inside the house for everything (cleaning, laundry, flushing, bathing), except drinking water (which was bought) it was a huge time waster and inconvenience. But, we were doing it because we didn’t have the extra finances in our budget to use the electricity freely, so we did what we had to do and boy oh boy was it difficult! I also hand washed the laundry for a couple months before getting a very simple manual washer (yeah, hand hauling the water again!)even doing one set of clothes for each family member by hand(you get real sweaty and kids dirty in that part of the world) everyday would take over an hour and my knuckles were rubbed raw from scrubbing with them. Washing jeans! The worst! There is a reason in the old days that they had a whole day dedicated to the washing 🙂
    I do still hang laundry to dry to this day to save on the costs we can.

    Anyhow, good luck with your off grid adventure Kendra and family. It’s very admirable and I would love to do that someday, but there are certain practical issues that arise from using less power, especially with children and time constraints.

  8. Hi Kendra,
    We moved off grid last year and love it. We don’t have solar panels though. Quick thought…or question, I guess…have you ever read Michael Bunkers book, Surviving Off Off Grid?
    If your family is really looking to become more independent, it’s a great book to get your mind where it needs to be for it.
    Blessings to you on your new adventure!

  9. I am an electrical contractor in Michigan. I have been into electronics from 1961. The first and foremost thing that I stress is safety. It takes only 4 Milli amps to kill you. This is with normal skin resistance. When you sweat your resistance goes down. Photovoltaic cells produce current in sunlight. Even one that is “broken” will produce current. I have found the best practice is to cover the cell with cardboard. This will provide the darkness that will give some safety. Remember a 15 watt output is 15000 times stronger than is needed to kill you. So if you cut its output by 99 percent you still have current that could kill on a sunny day and the body is wet with sweat. Three things that are most important. SAFETY,SAFETY, and STAY ALIVE to enjoy your efforts. I look forward to reading all the success stories. Last thing when you calculate your needs and the output of a solar cell double your output needs. The most efficient cell made puts out about 22 percent at full sun. This drops off rapidly. Do your calculation on the shortest day and under the poorest conditions. And be certain you will need backup for your system. Again stay safe. you cant care for your family if your dead. Grim but fact.

  10. Hi Kendra,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a quite a while and I have nothing but respect and admiration for all you have accomplished. I am sure you are well researched because you always are, but I am concerned about your numbers.

    I ran your numbers through a basic solar calculator because I also have been researching and pricing (ouch) solar systems for many years. Without your actual location and a number of other factors this is clearly an estimation, but you appear to need a system 12 times the size for the power you are currently using. As someone who has spent the last 4 years doing everything possible to lower our utility usage I wonder if your goal of living with only a 1000 watt system is possible.

    My real question is this, is the reason you are doing this to save money or is it for independence from the power company? I, like you would love to say goodbye to the utility bill, but having the backup in emergencies especially with such a small system seems wise. You mentioned that it costs 60 dollars just to stay connected. Is that right? have you challenged that? Most utilities do have a minimum usage but that seems grossly excessive. Also if the main reason is money, when you buy alternatives that cost as much to run you may not save money. The price of propane around us is over 4 dollars a gallon if you need it delivered. That is not cost effective, so I only use it for the stove which will allow me to cook during a power outage.

    Some of the things we did to lower the bills are:

    Removed every incandescent light in the house, barn, chicken coop, greenhouse, etc. If you really don’t want to use any CFLs, you can now get LEDs for around 6 dollar or less (I get mine at Costco and I’m replacing the CFLs as the die out).

    Replaced the electric hot water heater with a Hybrid heat pump version. We run it in heat pump only mode which uses barely any electricity. It also dehumidifies and cools a little which helps in the summer as we no longer have to run a dehumidifier. It cost around 1000 and will pay for itself in probably less than 4 years even with just 2 of us in the house.

    We replaced 2 older refrigerators with new efficient ones.

    We replaced the old washing machine with a good front loader.

    We replaced the tank for the well pump with one that goes on less often.

    Truthfully, we are not so young and while we live a nice country life there are things I am not willing to do, like wash my clothes in a bucket to save some electricity or hang wash when it’s 5 degrees out.

    We have successfully lowered the electric usage from the previous owner of our property by probably over 50%. Our bill is still around 50 dollars cheaper than his and there have been 2 price hikes.

    As much as I would like to convert completely to solar, the prices I have been quoted range from 28,000 to 43,000 without batteries! That’s just not reality for me. In looking a smaller systems like you are purchasing, they just don’t seem to offset enough of the energy costs to be worth the price for us.

    Lastly, and I’m not sure how you can research this without drawing attention to yourself, is the fact that a number of places are not allowing people to go off grid no matter how well prepared they are. The municipalities take away the Certificate of Occupancy from some homes creating a huge and expensive legal battle.

    You are always well prepared, so I have total faith that you will succeed. I can’t wait to see how this goes for you.

    • Hi Amy,

      I appreciate your thoughtful response 🙂 It must be clear that we are not trying to sustain our current energy load with solar panels. We can’t afford such a large system. You are correct, the 1000 watt system we have isn’t nearly enough to run what we currently use. Thus the non-electric alternatives we are putting in place (check out my recent post “Considering Non-Electric Alternatives“).

      I am aware of the legal battles that other off-gridders are facing. It’s such a shame, isn’t it?? You know I’d fight that tooth and nail.

      Sounds like you guys are doing a great job saving money in ways that work for you!

      Thanks again for sharing your thoughts and for your encouraging words. 🙂

  11. Kendra,

    I wish you all the best with the going off the grid!

    You didn’t mention how strong your inverter is because it will determine which appliances you can run.

    Each appliance has startup load which is bigger than the continuous load. So for example if your refrigerator uses 700W just to run it will use up to additional 1500W just to start working so that means 2,200 Watts as a starting load. If your inverter in not strong enough you won’t be able to run it.

    Hopefully you get rid of the electricity bill and the annoying power company but for some time keeping the grid as a backup would be a good option at least until you supplement with wind.

  12. We really enjoyed reading this article. We are considering doing this and like your quick breakdown of what you are dealing with. It is helpful to us.

  13. Oh I do wish you the best of success (’cause I don’t believe in luck) and admire your pluck. The first summer we moved to the farm, I cooked 3 meals a day on a 2 burner Coleman cook stove and a charcoal grill. Now,
    I haven’t the inclination to go off grid – I’m too old and too alone so I try and watch my bill (go up and up and…).
    Have you looked into the new light bulbs? Uncle Sam is forcing us to stop using the old style, because they say (and don’t we all just believe what they say??? HA!) the new style uses less electricity. However, one thing my old Da still tells me, “you don’t pay for a penny more in electricity than you use.” He’s right even if some use is vampire usage. Anyway, I’ve read the new style bulbs save energy but how is that when they have to be ON for a while before they get bright and you’re not supposed to turn them on/off. You’re supposed to turn them on and leave them…to save money.
    Maybe I’m the dumb cluck but that just doesn’t make sense.

    • Hi Sandra,

      We’ve actually installed a several LED light bulbs around our home (not those CFLs with Mercury in them). I like them. They’re not as bright as a 60 watt, but they give off enough light for our needs. And they don’t seem to need to warm up to reach full brightness. These only use 5 to 10 watts. 🙂

  14. Kendra, when we were trying to decide on a generator, we got a list from Home Depot in the generator section about how much power different appliances should use. It is free and it might help you. good luck. Sounds like you don’t have a lot of sunshine.

  15. That’s so exciting! Going off grid is one of our dreams. Until then we are trying to reduce our energy use. We use a dorm fridge and a chest freezer instead of big combo fridge/freezer, line dry year round, and heat with wood. I can’t wait to hear more about taking the plunge!

  16. Congrats. I have been off grid for 9 years on our 40. I just got internet last year:-) ….may I suggest compact flourescents for lighting, propane stove and propane fridge. I once cooked three meals a day on a woodstove and I’d three summers with no fridge….just ice…..you won’t have to do that with planning….yes, there will be adjustments, but you can do this and add to your solar system over time. No microwaves, and you can run a vacuum cleaner if you add another 1000 watts to your system…..I got rid of carpeting….just do tiles and throw rugs…..a broom is a nice off grid tool……remember to laugh, too……you are going independent off bully electric company! Good luck…you can do this !

  17. Yea! For y’all,
    I have been thinking about your wood stove. I figure you will be going to all wood for cooking if you don’t go to gas. I will get in touch to talk later. I am just so excited for you and I know you will make it work 🙂
    Blessings from Miracle Farm Homestead

  18. Hey Kendra. It’s been a while since I’ve been on your blog, but boy am I glad I clicked on it today! Sounds SO exciting and I am REALLY looking forward to all your tales of off grid living. This is something that my husband and I would love to do someday and I am definitely going to be keeping track of your progress! GOOD LUCK!!

  19. I would suggest you try living within your proposed energy budget before you actually turn off the power. You are looking at using 10 times less electricity. Using a kill-a watt type measurement device, you should be able to determine where that energy is going and what has to go. But many people find that if they can reduce their electricity load enough to be equal to a solar system (ten times in you case or about $20 a month worth of electricity before delivery fees) that the cost of a solar system isn’t as attractive. The part that has stopped us is the battery cost/life. Basically the batteries have to be replaced about every 5 years. That is a huge expense that I haven’t yet been able to justify with solar. There are you tube videos on making your own wind turbine out of a pvc pipe and a recycled motor from a treadmill. Very cost effective, a man here used to sell them. Definitely worth it to try that. Also solar space heaters and water heaters pay for themselves in months not years, so add that to your plan. They last for years and most have almost no parts that wear out. Check out the wisdom of the Simply Solar yahoo group. Very knowledgeable and very economical and DIY too.

  20. Wow I am excited for you! This is something in our mind also as the place we consider to settle down has no electric supply. Right now we manage without electricity but eventually I would like to get one. And my work needs me to plug my computer 12 hours a day. I wonder how big a system would be needed for this..

  21. Thank you for an interesting post. We have built our own house and are saving for the same off the grid experience soon I hope. We too have large electricity bills, we have a cheap rate that we religiously stick too and hope we can make the change as our bills just seem to be higher each time as the electricity companies keep increasing the cost!! Good luck, I’m keen to see how it works for you. I have just found your website and am excited to be joining you to share your ideas, many thanks. XX

  22. Very enlightening! We are about to buy some property and build a small house for retirement. It sounds like the amount we would pay to have power run from the road to the house might very well be about the same as installing an off-grid system – something we are very interested in. Thanks so much for the “not-so-tech-heavy” info!

    I just found your blog a couple of weeks ago and we’re enjoying learning lots of new things from you and yours. Thanks for sharing your adventures!

  23. Wow, Kendra – good for you guys! I just checked our energy bills and we use, in the summer months, about 600kw per month for our family of six. If you’re heating with natural gas or electric, your avg. KW per month are completely understandable. We heated with electric the last two months due to ridiculously high propane costs, and our bill was nearly $600 both months!! Thanks so much for this post. We are working on our off-grid plan and feeling overwhelmed as solar power seems so daunting to understand. Big help here!

    • Laurie,

      I really think something is off with our house. We must have faulty equipment somewhere for us to use that much electricity. We live so simply, I just don’t understand it. During the freezing winter we did have the electric heat kick on (when we ran out of wood) and that was super expensive. We’re definitely going to have to get a HUGE wood pile ready before we do this for good! I hope that I can explain the system in a way that doesn’t seem so overwhelming once we get it all in place. ‘Cause I’ve been completely overwhelmed trying to understand it all!

  24. Congratulations on making that big step!!

    As someone that is weeks away from doing the same (FINALLY!!), I’d like to offer a few words of caution. I’m an electrician and a longtime reader of Home Power magazine. (no affiliation – BTW, lots of great, free information and resources on their site.)

    Your power generation and storage predictions are _highly_ optimistic. Don’t get me wrong, it is achievable and affordable (especially long term as bills only go up), just be much more realistic. Power production, efficency losses and actual usage numbers all should be taken with a heavy dose of skepticism.

    Your moving down an exciting road, and more of us will be joining you,
    Thank you and keep posting!!

    P.S. Are you using solar hot water yet? The bang for your buck is usually significantly better than PV.

    • Thank you so much for your advice, Mark! Yes, I realize that especially during the wet Spring months and cold winter months, we’ll be lucky if we get 2 good hours of full sunlight. Kinda scary, lol. We are making plans to build a solar shower, as well as trying to figure out a wood heated option for wintertime as well. I’ll share everything we’re considering in the next post. I’m excited that you’ll be taking the same leap of faith soon as well! It’s intimidating to cut yourself free… and I don’t expect it to be easy, or romantic at all. But I think the freedom will be worth it.

  25. Michael – I was addressing this part of the post: “According to our power company, we use an average of 1380 kWh per month. ” But I do have not one, but two teenaged girls. 🙂

  26. I’m really surprised you use that much electricity. We have a 2800 sq ft home and we are okay with energy conservation, but certainly not extreme. I dry almost all our clothes with an electric dryer, our oven is electric, and I work from home, so am always here. Our energy usage is much less. We do have gas heat and hot water. Do you heat with electricity? I just think that maybe one of your appliances is overusing power, because as careful as you are with everything, I can’t imagine you using that much electricity. I can’t remember what they are called, but I bought one of the things you plug in and plug your appliance into to see how many kW it uses. I’m thinking it was in the $20-30 range. I was concerned about how much our refrigerators were using. OH – we have 3 full-sized refrigerators that we use also. Our highest monthly usage in the last year was July (using a/c) and was 1044 kwh. Our monthly average for the last year is 714 kwh. Our monthly average cost for both electricity and gas is $184.72 for the last 12 months. Anyway – sorry for the long comment :), but I really think something is off. In our first house, the heat pump was messed up and was drawing way more energy than it should have. I wonder if you don’t have something like that also.

    • Hi Sheila,

      I definitely think you’re right. We actually do have a Kill-O-Watt meter that we’ve been plugging into everything. I have a suspicion that either our heat pump, our hot water heater, or our well pump is the big energy guzzler. Something has to be wrong, ’cause everyone we’ve talked to says their usage is never that high. At least the way we’re going we’ll be able to track everything we use. 🙂

  27. This is very exciting and it will be interesting to hear how things go in the coming months.
    I am being as energy conservitive as possible at my home. My electric company does an analysis of my close neighbors that have homes that are like mine, with gas heat. Currently I am number 6 of 100 in being conservitive with my electric. At night I have 2 oil lamps that I use for light.
    I am sure you will figure things out. This seems, like you said, exciting and scary at the same time.

  28. I am a new reader to your blog but will be looking forward to hearing about your adventure in going off-grid. This would be my dream to be free of the utility companies.

    Good Luck!

  29. Congratulations! I know you have been thinking and planning this for a long time. I can’t wait to read about all the conversion! How exciting. I want to eventually do this, but have a lot more things ahead of it.
    Thanks for sharing.

  30. Have just recently discovered your blog and really loved this post on going “off grid”! It was very informative and I look forward to your updates! Good Luck!! 🙂

  31. Sheila, Were you talking to Me or NLOH? If me than its not hard to use a lot when you have a 16 year old and your other half using electricity like its free. I love them to death but good lord they are power hogs. And to think I had my entire (very small house) spray foamed when I built it to save energy on heating and cooling.

  32. I have been trying to get everything lined up to go OFF the grid since I finished building my house Oct. 2012. I moved in on Halloween 2012. I currently have 5 deep cycle batteries and a 3000 watt inverter being powered by 430 watts of solar. I tested my off grid last summer and found that I will need to run two 5000 watt inverters 240 volt each to continue to run everything as we have in the past. I am planning on ordering 1100 more watts of solar early next month along with the bigger inverters. I also am going to order 2 450 watt wind generators to supplement the solar. That’s what I suggest that ya’ll consider doing next. Although you may not get a lot of wind, usually when storms come and sun light is low, there is plenty of wind to help keep the batteries charged. Almost forgot, I am going to have to get about 15 more batteries but that’s due to the whole house being electric and us not cutting back any more than we are use to. Good luck whit your off grid and if I can be of any help, holler.

    • Michael,

      A wind turbine is definitely on our list of things to get next year 🙂 Already in the plans! Because exactly as you said, when it’s cloudy outside often a storm is blowing in, and we do get good wind here when it storms. Good luck with your system as well!

  33. Wow!
    That is a big step.

    I’m sure you’ll do just fine because you have a good head on your shoulders 🙂

    You might be able to ditch your fridge and replace it with a propane freezer or low energy SunDanzer.
    Good luck to you & I look forward to reading about your off-grid progress.

    • Hi Granny Miller,

      Thank you for the reassuring words. I’m expecting a major learning curve, but we’ll get there. I’ll definitely check out your link. We actually just bought a small chest freezer which we’ll be converting to a fridge, so we can ditch our side-by-side 🙂


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