Further Off-The-Grid


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At risk of (excuse the pun) rabbiting on about this - about new installation considerations touched upon in #26 of the above thread.

A major question for the investment is how much "overnight/bad weather" storage does one need. There is a counter-intuitive possible answer.

Bearing in mind that the intention for most investors is environmental sustainability and survival - along with - in the SA case - economic survival - suggesting this solution will grate against many environmental principles.

However, reality and principles often clash into mutual exclusiveness.

Here's the thing.

Choices: lots of batteries (cost considerably at the forefront) Versus a petrol/diesel generator (pollutant whatever you do - short of running the generator on hydrogen - my favourite environmental solution).

Reality: no matter how many batteries you have, a few days of low solar generation will cause black-out. (I'd say trust me - but....). Now that might be rare and/or call it infrequent.

Experience: we have just experienced four days plus of thick overcast weather, and, while there was some solar generation, it was not near enough to allow even half normal operation (low consumption) of the houses. So longer periods of black out experienced than even Eskom manages.

Solution: we managed to purchase a 7kw petrol generator which has run on each of three days of the past 7 for average 4hrs per run. This allowed full recharge and kept life well bearable and fully operational. It's been the sort of compromise of environmental and economic principles one can live with in terms of quality of living standards. (And of course run the farm's medium size workshop equipment.)

Finally, going off grid means : Learn to manage consumption behaviour.

heers - hopefully these posts have been useful - most of all - the above solution means I can STILL DO B4X work! There's the biggest bonus.