homemadeenergy.org ad legit?
I just figured out how to search my posts and find replies. Thank you for panning this ad.
A good rule of thumb is to either ignore the "Ads by Google" or choke down 2 pounds of salt before you link to them.
Chris mention he has solved his energy problem. Where does he explain how he did it?
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I purchased the e-book from "Home made Energy" a few weeks ago, when you watch the video, they mislead you by telling how easy and inexpensive it is, to build your own "solar panel". Well let me tell you, is not easy and is not inexpensive, it requires to buy not only some tools, that I do not have, but requires to buy batteries ( to store the energy collected) that are not cheep at all, and to have knowledge of electricity, otherwise you will require to hire an electrician.
When you watch the video, and please do, it tells you basically that you are really stupid , if you are incapable of saving money by building such an easy thing to do and safe energy, what they do not tell you is that in order to safe a significant amount of money, you really have to have a workshop a lots of tools and a lot of time.
The reality is that I do feel stupid for not inquire a bit more about this company, and the product, I really acted emotionally , thinking " how cool will be" but the truth is " How stupid it was"
By the way, I actually did not received the actual building instructions, what I got was a bunch of "youtube" type of information of what I need , and that’s about it.
I requested my money back. I will tell you, how this is gonna work . meanwhile I keep bitching myself for been such an idiot.
[quote=reistr][quote=1440 minutes]Just keep in mind that the amount of energy that solar panel produce is very small, so you will need a few acres of land and tens of thousands of dollars to actually run a conventional home…[/quote]
REALLY….? How pessimistic is that?
Firstly, before you spend "tens of thousands of dollars", turn your "conventional home" into an energy efficient one…. the BEST energy source of all that lurks in any home is to stop the waste! Over 15 years, we’ve reduced our useage from 30 kWh/day to just 2.2. NO, it’s not 22 it’s 2 point 2.
With the 3.5 kW on our roof, we generate about 6 or 7 times what we consume, and sell it to the grid for a profit of ~$500 a quarter.
Places to look first:
Leaks. Plug up ALL the places where cold/hot air enters your house in extreme temperatures (which will be different from one climate to another)
Insulate. Curtains and pelmets over windows is a great place to start, because windows are where you will lose/gain heat the most.
Replace all your lights with new LED’s, ESPECIALLY if your ceiling is peppered with those really nasty halogen low voltage (but high power) downlights.
Trash your electric hot water system and go solar (BEFORE buying PVs IMO). If your location is very cloudy go for a heat pump.
Trash your old fridge (especially if it’s more than 10 years old) and buy the most energy efficient one you can buy or do this http://damnthematrix.wordpress.com/2009/09/06/heres-a-really-cool-idea/
Trash your PC and get a laptop (you can get a good laptop in Australia now for $400)
Trash your plasma screen and downsize to something like a 24" LED TV.
THEN….. use all the money you save on your power bill to buy quality PVs!
good lord has anyone read chris’ book beside damn the matrix? read what energy a gallon of gasoline produces and also read that once it’s used it’s gone. look at the amount of work it does and that is what you want from other forms of energy? i’m sorry but not only did we squander the oil, we became soft and complacent because of it. we thought that cheap energy was normal not a once on the earth experience.
then read chris’ comments on life in the future is going to be different.
then read that oil has peaked
then put it together.
cheap easy flick a switch way of life is over.cheap energy is not clever, efficient, smart the way to go…it was..was cheap and used up.
or return to dumb thinking 101 and why not burn coal and pollute the air, or nuclear energy….just so you can pay 15 cents a kilowatt to run a hair dryer????
it always amazes me on this website where folks are looking for where to put their money into something that will benefit them in the future….and then they miss the concept of solar energy…
i have solar and wind….and manpower..my own……and yes it cost something, and no it wasn’t cheap….but it doesn’t give me cancer like the other forms of energy that we have currently.and right now the gov’t doesn’t own it…or control it….i do. it’s price from here on out is nothing.
and no it doesn’t take acres of land
this message is coming to you via solar power , it’s running my computer
is it cost effective?
i have it and you don’t……that is it’s value.
lastley….i wonder how many of you actually realize….i mean you read what chris says, do you actually realize the implications of what is not going to be there?
sometimes i don’t think you get it.
Matrix is dead on- you first have to cut back on your use – like that hot tub has gotta go! So does the electric sauna – get a wood fired one.
At MyBackAchers.com we just finished our test run on a Water Bug unit for Hydro-Electric power, which will at least run spring, summer and fall (forget winters cause the creek is froze up). In order to live off-grid – we still need to reduce all the energy use we can.
I prefer hydro when its available and I think its the one alt-energy people can made themselves, gives constant power – or at least when the water flows, has a short pay back time and doesn’t use batteries – unless you want to. We saw a guy on ebay selling solar pieces you soldier together and he really had a pallet of them for cheap- like $9K – that’s cheap for solar and you can add to that cost when you add the batteries because it doesn’t run all the time. Same with wind – we tested a small unit to see if we wanted a large one and it was too much hassle when batteries didn’t have power when the wind didn’t blow.
We don’t heat with any electrical use and we don’t need a freezer running when its 20 below so that leaves us lights and communications to power. We cook with propane (might be switching to wood in a few years) and the washing machine gets run once a week whether I want clean clothes or not (of course clothes get hung outside to dry..or freeze depending on the weather. . . had been think we would just hang dirty clothes out in the winter and get them off the line in spring to conserve even more. =))
Personal energy cubes
In this post, we’ll put a physical, comprehendible scale on the amount of energy typical Americans have used in their lifetimes. No judgment: just the numbers.
The task is to estimate our personal energy volume, so that we can mentally picture cubic tanks or bins corresponding to all the oil, coal, natural gas, etc. we have used in our lives—perhaps plunked down in our backyards to bring the idea home. Go ahead and try to guess/picture how big each cube is.
The resulting analysis is more mathy/quantitative than most of my posts, which might not make for the smoothest reading. Don’t let the math bog you down: the details are there if you want them—but if you just want the answers, they are not too hard to find.
Picturing the Impact
We’ve worked out all the numbers. Let’s put it into pictures to get a more visceral feel for what the numbers mean. I use a typical San Diego house and yard (2000 ft², and 7200 ft², respectively) for comparison. Note these cubes apply to just me. My wife requires another set (but I’ve run out of room in the backyard!).
The cubes are color coded: dark brown for crude oil, gray for coal, blue for compressed natural gas, and yellow for the amount of average crustal material containing the requisite amount of uranium (though the actual uranium fits in your pocket). Each of these cubes corresponds to 40 person-years of typical usage. Add up the person-years in your house to figure out how to scale these volumes.
Panning out, we set the scene set on top of the appropriate-sized cube of water (deep blue) for hydroelectric production. This is a big volume for only 3% of the energy. But it is replenished, and so is not a good direct comparison to the other resources (we could compare the volume of dam needed, or note that the daily water use is about the size of the yellow cube). We also now see the volume of natural gas in uncompressed form as the light blue cube. This is the appropriate volume of gas as burned at the stove-top, furnace, or water heater.
Also shown for reference is the size a 15% efficient photovoltaic (PV) array would have to be to supply the entire 10,000 W average power an American demands today. The 18×18 m array produces 48 kW in full sun, but I’m only counting on an average of five hours of full-sun equivalent each day (San Diego is closer to 6, actually). Note that the PV array will last approximately the same 40 year timescale, and is thin enough to require far fewer materials than the other streams—even considering eventual replacement. Sitting in the front yard is the amount of material volume needed to construct the 4000 kg of panels, coming out to a cube 1.15 m on a side. The actual high purity silicon is a cube 0.5 m on a side, seen as a dark blue inset in the solar materials cube.
The installed solar array would cost approximately $200,000 (no storage). Meanwhile, the cube of oil, at $100/bbl would cost $88,000, and the coal and natural gas—if used to produce electricity at 35% efficiency and $0.05/kWh—would cost about $40,000 each (over twice this in California), for a total outlay of at least $170,000. Same ballpark, actually. If I instead use gas for cooking and heating, I would pay $26,000 rather than $40,000 for the gas at $1 per Therm (100 ft³ = 2.8 m³ contains 1.02 Therms of energy).
Yes, I used today’s prices and not the average prices over the last 40 years. But the comparison between fossil fuels and solar, for instance, is of interest for the future and not the past. Anyone want to guess whether the fossil fuel prices over the next 40 years will go up or down?
What of It?
The results of this exercise are intended to do little more than put a visual scale on the materials involved in the energy requirements of a typical American citizen. Some may be amazed at how large the volumes are, while others may be amazed by how small. They are what they are, and we can carry these visualizations around in our heads for whatever purpose.
Personally, I am impressed by the relative similarity of many of the block sizes. I don’t find any of them to be mind-blowingly monstrous, but at the same time I am humbled by the invisible (to me) impact these cubes represent in our wider world. I am impressed by the compactness (especially in comparative volume) of the solar array that accomplishes the same energy yield over 40 years—although it is not my intention to trivialize the practical challenges of transitioning to a fully solar energy system, or to suggest that a fully solar system is the appropriate approach. Nonetheless, solar energy is often characterized as pathetically diffuse and expensive. But when multiplied by decades of sun, the materials and volume required are rather advantageous, and the cost comparison is not frightening.