Here are 2 videos of the off-grid home that belongs to the president of Evolve Green:
Q. How can I pay for my system faster for my Home?
You can apply for a business number and calculate your earnings from you system to use for taxible income then you can write off over 3 years the whole system
towards all you taxes paid. This works best for the person that works a regular job and has with held taxes.
Q. If I lease my equipment can I write off the whole amount of the payments?
Yes, If you apply for a business number you can Lease your equipment and have the payment be 100% deductible on your income tax. At the end of the term the leasing company will sell you your system back for $1. This way you can own the whole system, interest and all paid for with your withheld tax.
The simplest and most reliable way to put solar to work at your home or cottage is an Evolve Energy Solution! These kits are designed for fast, easy and fully code compliant installations. With features such as quality cUL approved solar modules, solar mounting brackets and battery charge protection, you will have the very best equipment in an integrated solar power system. Larger packages come complete with DC-AC inverters, allowing full integration with generators and home wiring. Safe, secure and reliable! Remember we custom design to fit your project so let us know what you are planning from a little bit of back up to taking it off the grid!
Your own independent power system can provide most electric conveniences at a remote home site, where bringing in utility lines would be impossible or prohibitively expensive. Just extending utility power 1/4 mile or more to reach a home site can cost $15,000 and up, and that's before you get any power. Equipment to produce your own solar electric power may cost less. If power lines are not near your land you can choose clean renewable resources, boats and recreational vehicles can use the same equipment on a smaller scale.
Natural and free energy already on your site in sunlight, wind, or falling water can be converted to electricity. We specialize in power entirely from solar, wind, or micro-hydro, plus generator backup in climates short on sunshine.
An Independent natural power system typically produces just 10 to 25% of the electricity consumed by a utility powered Canadian home. That is about 1 to 5 or at most 10 kilowatt hours of electricity on each sunny day.
Rather than major life-style changes, we keep most advantages electricity offers while consuming only a small percentage of the power others use. Here is how: The amount of power your system generates depends on the natural energy resources at your location and on how much equipment you install to gather that energy. How much benefit you receive from that energy depends on careful selection of lights and appliances for maximum energy efficiency and on your conservation habits. That means using special lights, refrigerators, and freezers that use about 1/4 as much power. It means using natural gas or propane for major heat production in cooking, water heating, clothes drying, and home heating. (Try to include passive solar home design and perhaps some wood heat). We install extra switches to cut power off phantom electric loads, that is, things like stereo, TV, garage door openers, and office equipment, all of which consume power even when not turned on. We often wire doorbells, wireless phones, and motion sensor lights to DC power direct from the house battery bank, to use no power when idling. We use motion sensor and timer switches for outdoor lights. We use heating systems that distribute heat without pumps or blowers. Cooling is evaporative instead of air conditioning. We learn how to get the most benefit from the fewest kilowatt-hours. In short:
1. Design the whole house (water, heat, power) for low energy use. Consider solar thermal to help heat water this will be very helpful 9 months of the year to supply heated water for your domestic hot water.
2. Carefully select very special low energy LED lights.
3. Eliminate energy waste in appliances, and from human carelessness.
4. Energy star normal AC fridges and freezer work well just ensure they are within 5 years old.
5. Should have a good quality back up generator in most cases a 2 wire auto start is the best with automatic choke. Size you choose can very should be able to provide enough energy to your home and at least 30amps to the battery charger.
After meeting those 5 measures, a practical, affordable solar electric system (or wind, solar thermal) can provide electricity for a comfortable home.
EFFICIENCY IN YOUR OFF-GRID HOME
Most household appliances and lights use only a little electricity easily supplied by the sun, wind, micro-hydro, or Solar thermal. Solar electric homes convert most of their power to 120 volt AC, to use as needed for household appliances and lights. Most common uses are lights, water pump, TV-VCR/DVD-satellite, computer, stereo, vacuum cleaner, kitchen appliances, sewing machine, power tools, and office equipment. Even high wattage appliances like microwave oven, hair drier, toaster, and clothes washer consume little power because their actual running time is short. Water pumps including deep well pumps up to 1/2 horsepower are used. Electric refrigerators and freezers are selected carefully to save energy in a solar home.
WHAT YOU SHOULD AVOID IN YOUR OFF-GRID HOME
No major electric heating or cooling appliances. Electric heat, electric hot water, electric cook stove, electric heated clothes dryer, and air conditioner account for 80 percent of typical monthly utility bills. It is absolutely NOT practical to operate these major appliances with electricity. These use from twenty to one hundred times the power your TV uses. Other fuels produce heat at much lower cost. Use wood or propane fueled furnaces, propane cook stoves and water heaters; use gas fired clothes dryers (or just a rope in the sun). Build homes with passive solar heat design to save heating fuel for the rest of your life.
Avoid most large refrigerators and freezers. Many refrigerators have poor insulation and run long hours every day. Most still use well over 1.5 kilowatt hours per day, over 450 kilowatt hours a year. Careful shopping can turn up a few models using less power. We recommend getting a Fridge that is mid size and less then 5 years old.
Air conditioning is too energy intensive to be practical other than a window unit in a very large solar power system. Evaporative cooling – swamp coolers – work well in non-humid areas. We have had good success with the new energy star window type 5000 BTU models if your system is big enough to support it. Microwaves are fine in the smaller models like 900 watt units. You want to avoid coffee makers that stay on get units with thermal pot that auto shuts off or just use kettle with coffee press.
STATE OF THE ART AC ELECTRIC HOMES TODAY
Thirty years ago, independent home power meant designing and building your own equipment. Today, it doesn’t have to be a full time hobby, though it still can be fun. Home power system designs and components are standardized. Common problems have been solved by the experience of thousands of solar, wind, or water powered home owners. All the equipment is readily available, from a basic starter setup for lights and TV in a small cabin, to a full AC powered home and business. A good power system may consist of just 3 or 4 integrated components that building inspectors easily approve.
STILL — Independent electrical power is not quite a ‘turnkey’ appliance like a central heating system with sales and service people knocking at your door. Many independent homes are in remote places, where the owner is the prime decision maker, meter reader, and service person. A practical solar electric system requires some owner participation in planning, management, and maintenance. The owner-builder who understands batteries and equipment will have a better working system, save money, and become more self-reliant.
The main responsibility is managing your batteries, that is, making sure the batteries get fully recharged each month, and rarely discharged below 50 or 60%. This is done by watching the meters and if needed, running the generator to supplement shortfalls due to extended no-sun weather. About twice a year, one battery cell should be checked with an hydrometer, a glass tube and rubber bulb device with a float, that reads the condition of battery fluid. At the same time, the battery tops should be wiped clean and dry with a paper towel. two times a year you check every cell, and add distilled water to the battery cells to maintain the correct fluid level. An extra charge process called equalizing is sometimes required to restore weak battery cells to normal. Batteries have limited life, and need to be replaced every 5 to 20 years (depending on type) no matter how well you care for them.
Solar modules last well over 25 years with little maintenance. Warranty is 20 or 25 years on most modules sold at Backwoods Solar.
Electronic components are also long lived, but like TV sets, can fail unexpectedly, or be damaged by lightning or by incorrect installation. Most carry a 2 or 5 year warranty.
HOW MUCH WILL OFF Grid POWER COST?
Because life-styles and power usage vary so widely between individuals, a rural solar electric home can be set up anywhere from $2,500 to $53,000. Most often our customers spend between $6,500 and $18,000. Cost varies with amount of power needed, and also with the average daily sunshine hours for your location and climate. Northern areas with overcast snowy winters need a lot more solar modules and batteries than homes in New Mexico or Arizona, though both may use the same amount of power. The quantity of power you need relates to the number of people in the house more than to the square footage of the home. Type of things used in the home are varied so we need to understand your usage well to design a perfect system for your family. We have found that generally the family will grow into the system as they learn its power and short comings. My family looks at the available power before using the micro wave or going to run a high-power appliance. Ages 8 to 25 years so they do learn!
Windmill generators and solar thermal systems. Each solar thermal 30 tube manifold can produce as much as 7kw per hour in peak and can be used together with solar, to generate power in more varieties of weather. On a site with wind speeds measured and confirmed, wind generation used together with solar can reduce the total cost of the power system.
WHERE DO I PUT IT?
Batteries, inverter, and electronic controls should be installed in a utility room inside or near the residence. Electronic equipment mounts on 4 to 5 feet of wall within 8 to 10 foot cable length from the batteries. Equipment could be installed on the outside wall of a separate battery closet. Batteries take 2 to 15 square feet of floor space within the cable length from wall mounted equipment, and should be beside, rather than directly in front of wall mounted equipment. Allow ample working room to check batteries, and avoid cramping everything in a tiny closet. Electronic components need the same environment as a computer, TV, or stereo: a place that is clean, and away from moisture condensation. Solar placement be careful to consider all seasons as the sun in Canada is much lower on the horizon in the winter and trees and building not in the way in the summer can now be a problem. Ground mount in Canada is the most practical as you can remove the snow from your panels more easily.
Batteries should not be accessible to children or others unfamiliar with their hazards. Flooded lead acid batteries emit minimal amounts of flammable, (nonpoisonous) hydrogen and oxygen gas when charging, so should be enclosed in a box vented to outside by plastic pipe. They should stay above freezing but avoid temperatures over 45 degrees C. An outside battery and equipment shed may be used in moderate climates, but avoid putting batteries on a wood floor vibrated by the generator engine. We have found that batteries start to really loose power after -15 C so insulation and vented well in a outside shed still is the best! We like to use Water Mizers as well these reduce the need to top up your batteries and takes the water out of the off gas and puts it back into the batteries for Flooded batteries. This also reduces the corrosion on the battery cables.
Distance from the power room to generator and to the house AC circuit breaker panel is not critical. A generator should be in its own shed some distance away, to avoid the noise.
Distance from power room to solar module location is limited, as you are in DC. Modules are best Ground mounted or Pole Mounted, only roof mounted if trees and buildings prevent good sunlight at ground level.
Here is what some of our customers say about us!
10 out of 10 - Reg T Off Grid Solar system 2015 MB "They always deliver for me....great service and loads of technical back up knowledge.."
10 out of 10 - Janine G Off Grid Solar system 2015 MB "Great products, patient with my tech issues around payments, ease of payments on line…"
9 out of 10 - digitech … Solar Parks lights 2015 AB "Nobody is perfect."
10 out of 10 - Phil G Off Grid Solar system 2015 ONT "Good product good service good price"
10 out of 10 - Don O Off Grid solar system repair and LED lights 2015 MB "Good service"
10 out of 10 - Jason H Commercial solar system 2015 AB "A little hard to get a hold of sometimes. Other than that great company that always goes…"
10 out of 10 - David T LED light and Solar system 2015 MB "Personalized service, quality products and local availability."
10 out of 10 - Reg T Off Grid Solar system 2015 MB "Very knowledgeable...helpful...goes out of her way to accommodate sales even on Saturday."
10 out of 10 - Don G Off Grid Solar system 2015 MB "Very prompt, knowledgeable, and friendly attitude."
10 out of 10 - Kim A Grid Tie Solar system 2014 MB "On time, flexible and very good customer service. Would (and have) told others about…"
10 out of 10 - Brenda Solar Park lights 2014 ONT "very convenient"
10 out of 10 - Gwen P Commercial Repairable LED 2014 MB "About ten years ago we started looking for brighter lights to use especially in winter…"
10 out of 10 - Manitoba… Commercial repairable LED "good service, good products, fair pricing" MB 2014
10 out of 10 - Dan M On Grid Solar system 2014 MB "has proven track record, very clear on setting expectations of project.…"
10 out of 10 - Jack W Off Grid solar system 2014 MB "Very very helpful"