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> Trying To Go Off The Grid, Solar, wind, etc
BlueVanACD2005
Posted: December 31, 2016 11:24 pm
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I can keep an eye on them... Make sure they stay even by checking them periodically (once a month or something). A quick check revealed nine of twelve were 6.14V, two were 6.13V, and one was 6.15V.

I have a log sheet I use to track how much power I make every month (day to day). I can start writing on the back battery voltages monthly. If one starts to get out of wack I can take some kind of action.. trying to bring that one back up with the others or discharge it a little.

Four more batteries did help stabilize the overall voltage under large loads though.

Only a few more months and I can start building a tower for the wind turbine lol
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BlueVanACD2005
Posted: March 14, 2017 04:30 pm
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Just a quick update:

I have since installed more batteries, for a total of (24) now. https://goo.gl/photos/9sLi9kAHhuUomNvHA The system is very stable, and can last for several days without charging even using all appliances.

I also changed out my electric 50 gallon water heater for a natural gas tankless - this was a great upgrade. Not only does it use almost no electricity, it fits in the closet with the furnace (the 50 gallon was out in a room).

Then I got a new dryer, also natural gas. The inverter can run the electric motor (little trouble starting sometimes, but it makes it), and all the heat is gas.

I am considering using a 25 foot existing tree trunk for the wind turbine, and using lag bolts to attach uni-strut and a pole to stick up another 5 or 10 feet. A tower is a little more work than I'd like at the moment, but it may still happen at a later time.

All in all, I haven't used any electricity from the grid in almost a month.

I still have a little more space on the roof, so I ordered another 1000W of solar panels and a charge controller to add to the system. The sun has been coming out more now this time of year, and its no big deal to top off the batteries each day.
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kellys_eye
Posted: March 14, 2017 07:07 pm
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Nice to see and read about someone that can 'stick it to the man' and go their own way on energy production - even if it's a case of must rather than want.

With a combination like you've described you seem to have covered all the bases thumbsup.gif


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JoOngle
Posted: March 15, 2017 12:09 am
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Interesting indeed, keep us informed! thumbsup.gif


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AwesomeMatt
Posted: March 15, 2017 08:31 am
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I envy your independence.

In other news..

Got a power bill the other day. $85/month, apparently for the last 8 months. For a property without a power meter, power panel, or even a power cable to the building.

Apparently here, if you own a property, the power company can pull the land title, add your info to its billing service, hook you up to the default retailer, and start billing you. There is no ability to cancel it or just say "No thanks, no power, I'll let you know when I want it turned on." Suppose then that they make a typo in your address, so the bills they're sending you get returned to sender as they're being sent to a non-existent address.

Doesn't matter, still liable. ZERO KWh used for 8 months, and I owe something like $700 for the privilege of such. Now, I can change the power retailer (infrastructure is owned and built by a legal monopoly, the retailer that bills you is competitive)... maybe gone with one as cheap as $65 (base fee they'll have to pay the infrastructure company)... had I known I was getting charged. But no, because of their error, they've written themselves a cheque for all the future business until *I* figured it out.

I also might have asked for the power at the location to be "salvaged", where they may come and rip out the transformer and charge you for it (charge you extra if it's new and they haven't had time to recoup their cost). But, that's the only way that you can "turn off" your power and avoid the base fee. You own a property with power run to a pole? You're stuck paying it forever.

I'm so overdue (having just found out about it) that my power is about to be "shut off". I said "Great, that's what I would have asked for 8 months ago." But I think what happens is that they shut off my power AND KEEP BILLING ME.

Actual power here, is like, 1.5 cents/kWh. Ludicrously cheap.

Twenty five years ago the government passed a law where any home generated green power (solar, windmill, water, etc), pushed back into the grid, had to be rewarded at the same billing rate the power company was charging. So if they're charging $0.30/kWh, they have to pay you that much for the power you're adding. Soon after, non-scaling "transmission charge" and "administration fee" started making up more and more of your power bill.

I'm seriously considering a car or forklift battery powerwall. Used but tested-good car batteries are $10 at the junkyard, forklift batteries are generally garbage if underperforming. I figure, get a big inverter, and plug a battery charger into a neighbor's place, pay them for the actual kWh usage in a month, and let it trickle charge my off-grid. It'd pay for itself in about 6 months, but more importantly, screw them, rip off jackasses.
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kellys_eye
Posted: March 15, 2017 11:29 am
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Don't know what the legal status is where you are AM but here in the UK you 'could' argue your case on Maritime Law in that debt can only be created when there is a CONTRACT between the individual parties - if your power company can't show you a contractual agreement (signed by both parties) then they can't make any legal claim for loss against you. They CAN stop providing the power to you but since that what you want anyway then.... meh.

Another method is to send THEM an invoice for YOUR time and trouble reading THEIR meter. Your invoice will, of course, equal what is owed - or exceed it if you feel aggrieved enough! Once they have an invoice they have to enter it into their accounts (legally) and cannot ignore it.

Far too often big business and (increasingly) local government seem to think themselves above the law and rely on the ignorance of the public to press their claims for monies when, if you are intransigent enough, making the right noises and being a bl00dy nuisance in return can often get them to back off. We do this almost on a 'monthly' basis (feels like it anyway laugh.gif ) for one thing or another and have NEVER LOST.

e.g. Our local council are far too quick off the mark to send any outstanding debt to the local 'debt collection' companies who then use intimidation and fake court orders to pursue you - we took them to task and and (at first) had the debt collection agency refer the 'supposed debt' back to the council who then 'discovered' it wasn't enforceable and, since we pushed even further, we got a REFUND for previous years 'bill' too!

Corporations and .gov are far too up themselves and confident of public 'ignorance' which allows themselves the power to deceive and, for the majority of people, get away with it.

Stand up and be counted!


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BlueVanACD2005
Posted: March 15, 2017 12:52 pm
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QUOTE
Got a power bill the other day. $85/month, apparently for the last 8 months. For a property without a power meter, power panel, or even a power cable to the building.


That is insane! How is that legal? It seems like it should be easy to defeat in a small claims court or something.....
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