In our first article we looked at the idea behind using the wind to power our home, and got a basic look at whether or not it was something we wanted to do. We also looked at what we wanted to use a wind turbine generator for; whether to reduce our monthly bills or to take us off the grid completely. A wind turbine generator can be used for either purpose successfully, the only difference is how big a unit you will need, versus how much you have to spend.
In looking at the specifics there are actually a lot of variables to be considered, including but not limited to the location, cost and use of the system you choose. In this series of articles we are going to look at building a smaller 1000 watt unit that will be big enough to help reduce your household bill by an average of $800 to $1,000 per year. It would of course follow that if you could install several of these it would significantly increase the amount you could save, this being dependent of course on where you live.
The first things you have to look at are the laws and codes in your area, many areas have laws that restrict the installation of windmills for noise and visual reasons. In other words; some neighbors don’t want to see or hear your windmill even if it is saving you money. Also you have to take into consideration the wind, does in blow with any regularity or do you live n an area with little to no wind. If you live in an area where the wind does not blow on a regular basis perhaps solar is a better option for you.
You must take into consideration safety from all aspects, will your tower site be accessible by children or other people, where it will fall if the worst should happen, what a blade will hit if it comes off. Site location will also be a deciding factor in the type of tower you erect and how high you must build it to ensure the best wind flow. It will be an important factor when it comes to maintenance of your generator, which you will need to do on a regular basis.
The most common system in use today consists of a tower with the generator on top, connected to a series of batteries through a control unit. These batteries are then connected to an inverter which converts their DC voltage to AC for your household appliances to use. As you can see not much equipment is needed so it really should not cost a fortune to build.
In our next article we will take a look at assessing your wind quality and the basics of tower choice based on needs and location.
Sources: http://motherearthnews.com , http://google.com , http://otherpower.com