Sick of paying your utility bills? Or maybe you want to go to a greener lifestyle with less reliance on fossil fuels? Than maybe it’s time to ditch the grid completely! Here are 5 ways to get you started with living off the grid.
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1 Probably the most important part of going of the grid is no longer being dependent on the power company. The first way to shake free from “The Man” is by implementing a little solar power in your home. By using photovoltaic solar panels on your roof you can collect the sun’s light and convert it into energy. This light is collected in silicon semiconductors that knock loose electrons from the stored energy. By forcing these electrons to flow in one direction, the panel creates a direct current. When that passes through an inverter — zippity zap! — it converts into an alternating current that powers your home.
2 Or maybe the sun’s not your jam and you’re more like Jim Morrison and “The Riders On The Storm.” Well you can harness wind power too, with turbines that look like airplane propellers. As the wind blows by, the turbine’s blades move, spinning a rotor and turning that energy into electricity. This kind of clean energy costs only 3 cents an hour to generate, whereas coal-burning electricity costs 10 of them pennies!
3 Once you’re getting your power from either the sun or the wind, now you can abandon your reliance on the city’s water lines. Did you know you can tap your own water by digging a deep well in the ground and pumping H20 upward? You’ll want to hire a licensed driller, but according to the EPA roughly 15% of homes in the U.S. get their water from wells on their property. Once you’ve installed a filter in there, the water will taste much better too. Don’t let anyone fool you into drinking well water that tastes like dirt or dead squirrels. If they already did, subscribe to our channel and we’ll take care of the rest.
4 Or you could always buy something called a “cistern.” It’s basically a big tank that holds water that you collect from rain gutters. And the cool thing is that when the cistern is higher than your faucets, gravity will take care of pumping the water pressure into your home. Just a heads up though, if you live in a heavily polluted area, you’re going to want to stay away from drinking whatever bile it is that falls from your unnatural sky.
5 And speaking of disgusting liquids… to truly go off the grid you’re going to want to dump your sewer line as well. “But where will all that gross stuff that comes out of me go?!” you’re probably asking. That’s where a septic system comes in. Basically you put a big metal tank on your property to collect all that “nasty” in. Bacteria breaks it down inside into scum, sludge and liquid. This liquid then flows out into a distant drainage field and mother earth acts as a natural filter that absorbs anything harmful as nutrients. You’ll still need to get a professional to pump the tank out once a year. Unless you want to go digging around in your own filth that is.
That should get you started on the path to going off the grid. There’s other stuff to know as well, like how to dispose of garbage, how to adapt your off-the-grid lifestyle and how to augment your energy needs when the wind ain’t-a-blowin’ and the sun ain’t-a-shinin’. You can find all that and more in that original article I mentioned on HowStuffWorks.com.