Saving electricity consumption
We have to drastically reduce our electrical consumption, if we want to minimize the initial investment in storage battery in a stand-alone photovoltaic installation. The cheapest electricity is which is NOT consumed. Some examples of savings:
- Lighting .- Do we need lights on simultaneously in every room? I’m not saying you have to go dark, only that we must be very careful about turning off lights that are not strictly necessary every time. If we don’t care on lights, batteries goes down quickly.
- Appliances .- So many appliances are needed? So many hours a day? You have to review how many appliances are really useful in an off-gird rural housing. You can wish all the appliances you want, but then don’t claim PV is expensive or you have run out the batteries and you’re in the dark.
- Kitchen, hot water and heating .- Do NOT provide cooking, heating water or heating with electricity in an off-gird buiding! It’s a bankruptcy! In rural and agricultural areas it is more economic Bioenergy fuels for cooking, Solar Thermal for water heating or Biomass boiler for heating. Never electric with batteries!
The previous section tried to raise awareness of not spending. This section explains how to spend less, using energy efficient equipment. We continue with the same examples as before:
- Lighting .- You can not calculate a solar photovoltaic installation with traditional incandescent bulbs: they spend very much! Put out much more cost-effective low-energy fluorescent light bulbs or even better with LED technology. The additional cost of these bulbs is really paid off with a smaller investment in the PV system, especially in the batteries.
- Appliances.- Buy consumer electronics Class A or higher. For a freezer, or refrigerator, it is better a top-opening chest, to not lose cool when they are open. The refrigerators are big consumers of electricity from the batteries! For a washing machine you can connect the hot water that came from a solar thermal or biomass boiler, since the electrical resistance is highly consuming. For TV it is preferable a flat LCD, more efficient. The dishwasher, the iron, the microwave, etc, is preferable to avoid them, as they quickly discharges the batteries.
- Kitchen, hot water and heating .- We have already mentioned do not invest in electric. There may be some exception in hot water or geothermal heating, but never with a battery system.
This simple post just want to raise awareness that investment in photovoltaic solar storage battery can be contained if we first avoid wasting electricity and, if we really need, do it with efficient equipment. It is the right way.
Do you have experience of consume too much kW and have emptied the batteries? What do you think of this?
- How to save on Electric Storage Batteries? (1) Solar Accumulators are expensive (albertcampi.me)
- Going Tankless: The Dollars & ‘Sense’ of Tankless Water Heaters (txu.com)
- How to increase energy efficiency and reduce carbon foot print? (ahilan007.wordpress.com)
- Japan Predicting Drastic Cut of 50% or More to PV Generation Costs by 2030 (japanfs.org)