Off Grid

Add a Diversion Load to a SkyStream

April 18, 2013
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There are a few methods to add a diversion load to your Skystream. The best methods are shown below (option #1 or option #2) but it assumes you either have a charge controller/ inverter with a programmable relay driver/output or you will purchase a diversion controller. Outback Power, Schneider Electric and Magnum Energy. Midnite Solar, […]

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Skystream Battery Charging How To

April 18, 2013
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The Skystream made by Southwest Windpower is a grid tie wind turbine that is designed to produce 240 volts AC at 60HZ (or 50HZ)  no matter what speed the wind is blowing. It does this by taking the wild AC from the alternator, rectifying it to DC and inverting back to AC. It is quite […]

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Dump Load / Diversion Load Intro

April 16, 2013
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Since there is a lot of confusion about diversion loads, we will discuss what they are and why they are used. A dump load is nothing more than a resistor (heating element) that is used for dumping electricity when it is not needed or to prevent your battery bank from being overcharged. It could be […]

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Using an Electric Heater as a Dump Load

April 12, 2013
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A common question I get asked is “Can I use a standard 120/240 AC heating element or hot water heater element as a DC dump load for my wind turbine/water turbine/solar system?” (Wondering what a dump load is? Click here) (More advanced diversion load info for solar, wind and water power) The answer is yes […]

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How To Eliminate Phantom Loads

March 19, 2013
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Phantom loads are plaguing the world and are a huge problem for those of us living off the power grid. What is a phantom load? Everything possible must be done to eliminate phantom loads or at least reduce them. But how do we do that? The simplest way to eliminate a phantom load is to […]

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Hot Water Heating Systems

March 11, 2013

Domestic hot water will account for about 30% of your home’s energy footprint. Only a few decades ago there were very limited options for the off grid home’s water heating system. Back then the only options were a gas hot water heater, some form of wood boiler or the often high maintenance solar hot water […]

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Using Your Wood Stove to Heat Water

March 1, 2013

One of the most overlooked functions of a wood stove is heating water. A few decades ago many wood stoves (especially cook stoves) used what was a called a hot water front in conjunction with a tank (range boiler) beside/behind the wood stove to produce endless hot water. The hot water front (which is nothing […]

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Choosing a Pump for Your Aquaponics System

February 5, 2013
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Choosing the correct pump for your aquaponics systems is as important or more important than choosing the right fish, bed material, tank size and grow bed size. Without the right pump your fish will die, your plants will die and your fun will come to an end very quickly. Some folks simply head to the […]

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