Three Things to Consider About Taking Your Home Off the Grid

Whatever your reasons are for choosing to live in a self-sustaining home, the elements of utmost consideration are basically the same. No matter where your home is located, if you are building off the grid from scratch or retrofitting an existing structure, there are three categories of off-grid living systems. You can choose to employ a number of solutions to manage the basic elements of off the grid housing, and lucky for you Northwest Mechanical has experience with creative and classic systems in each one of these three basic categories.

Power- Generating your power is often the most common thing people think of when first learning about living off the grid. We see evidence of alternative energy sources all over areas urban and rural. Many people can tell you the basic types of home power generation (solar, wind, hydroelectric) but few understand the complex planning which goes into the creation of a truly independent personal energy generation system. The first steps in considering an off the grid power generating system are quantifying your power needs and understanding the options presented by your home’s location. In some cases, combination systems may be the best option if the resources available to you are unpredictable. There are also the complications of storing power reserves for your home in case of a system failure. All and all, a well planned and expertly built home power system, like the ones installed by Northwest Mechanical, can provide for all of your home power needs and in some cases excess power can be sold back to the area’s main power grid, helping to “green” your neighbors’ energy source.  

Water- The biggest and most important consideration with off the grid water systems is safety. From many sources ensuring water quality requires serious filtration systems. This requires energy. If your home is also employing an alternative power supply source, you’ll need to factor the filtration system (and any water transport pumps) into your power requirements. If you are simply trying to reduce your water use and conserve resources there are grey-water recycling systems that can be customized for your home and habits. Rainwater collection can be a great way to provide gardens with consistent water. The ability to drill a well on a property depends on the water table in the area, but wells, in general, can be an excellent water supply. If you are building your off the grid home from scratch consider having a surveyor specialized in well drilling look at any potential land purchases for potential well sites.

Waste- The best off the grid waste disposal systems are “out of sight, out of mind.” While they require significant planning and installation, once complete they should safely dispose of your home’s waste discretely. Some of the options available for home waste management require special permits, while others are not permitted within certain ordinances. Be sure when planning your off the grid home that you take care in checking the building and sanitation codes for the area of your home. It would be a shame to have to change the direction of your plans after things are already underway. Northwest Mechanical can help with your home plumbing and waste disposal systems. Our years of experience mean we know what works, and what ultimately does not.

Whether you’re considering going completely off the grid or making your home just a little bit more self-sufficient we can help with the planning and execution of your dreams. Building from scratch or retrofitting an existing home, there are many options to choose from when you go off the grid. With all construction projects make sure you are building with confidence. Northwest Mechanical has the knowledge and experience you trust. Because we do both plumbing and electrical work we are the best company for off the grid home systems. Give us a call today to discuss your plans and let us know how we can help you make your home an independent and fully functional retreat.     

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