Living off-grid is showcased across the country in small renovated sheds, and solar panels atop cabins. It’s functional for yourself and the world around you to say goodbye to household reliance on electricity companies, and other commercial amenities.
Living off grid does not happen overnight, but it is possible with hard work and planning. A part of this planning is researching the different energy alternatives, and having a step-by-step plan of action.
Do not be in a rush, it will take time, but know it is still a real possibility for your future. Many people take the journey to living off-grid. You’re not alone in the desire to leave behind the fast-paced race around you for a simpler, more self-reliant household. There are basic things you need, warmth, food, and good company. When all these points are met, your off-grid home is ready to live in.
Think of Constructing a home, or even turning a dilapidated structure into your home. You take that shed and use repurposed wood. Find this from other buildings in town (with the owner’s permission of course.) Then, you can create exactly the living space you need.
Know How Off The Grid You’ll Be
There is not one way to live off-grid. You can take small steps like installing solar panels, or go to the very extreme of building a cabin in the woods (outhouse and all.) Understand the use of generators, or if you will have one powering your home totally or partially. You know how much electricity you can truly cut your use down to, so be realistic with your powering options.
Solar panels and wind-turbines are systems with a high-upfront cost, but any system installation will cost more upfront. Then, after time, the amount saved increases with each electricity bill you do not have to pay. Some call the choice to go off-grid a philosophical one. Really think about your future and what you want from life.
Professional knowledge is offered everywhere. Look online for the best way to approach the level of off-grid you want to become. Many people change their lives around. It is not simply about running into the woods, but it can be a rehabilitation process where
Complete Off-Grid Living
You must have some experience living off the land to embark on a complete off-grid living experience. You can choose an area and live close to sources of freshwater, and amenities like modern shopping centers or even campground centers.
When living off the woods and plants around you, you need to know what can be used medicinally, or be eaten for nutrition. Then, there are the forbidden poisonous plants you’ll need to avoid. Without a refrigerator, you’ll need enough sustenance, so a river nearby and a fishing license could create the most realistic source of weekly meat. Dehydrated food will also become a necessity.
Bases Matter, No Matter Your Off-Grid Level
Finding a base near your home with public amenities is a must. Some living off-grid use very low amounts of power, so they do not even have some regular appliances that seem essential like a refrigerator. It may seem difficult to go without something so incorporated into daily life, but only buying what you’ll eat that day or the next couple is possible.
Running water is necessary to some and your personal situation will depict this. Remember cleaning s a major part of running water. You still need to wash your hands, or wash up after food if you do not want bugs. And depending on where exactly your home is, and what is around it, you could have many creepy crawlers come in attracted to an unclean environment.
There are circumstances where a home needs a toilet that flushes.
How You Power Your Home
There is solar power, wind power, and hydro power. The cheapest to set up is hydropower, but without a running stream the installation involves a lot of landscaping. While solar panels are the most expensive, they are easy to install in small spaces and can collect large amounts energy in one days run.
Wind power is another option. This involves learning about different wind turbines and their capabilities. Wind energy is ideal for those in high-wind areas. For a turbine to work properly, the wind needs to meet 9 mph. Information on turbine capabilities and their different rating is found through the Department of Energy.
Batteries are Your Best Friends
Batteries are not just for powering electronics on spot, btu are needed to hold energy from your natural energy source. Any excess energy a wind-turbine creates is then stored in the battery for future use. This is important in case weather situations cause your turbine or solar panels to not sustain you in real-time.
Always prepare for the worse in your off-grid living situation. Know that it is not best to rely on one generator to fuel your power. Have a backup on hand, especially if you use natural energy. Some days the sun will not shine long enough, and other times the wind will lay low on a nice summer day, but you will still want to have access to electricity in your home.
Life outside of regular consumer living is hard to achieve without a helping hand. Reach out to professionals and those who know about the giant transition you’re about to complete. There is no such thing as having too much information or being too prepared.