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  • in reply to: tankless water heaters #65765

    I thought I had covered it but I will sum it up: By going with Tankless you are committing to an unrenewable resource for the fuel.

    in reply to: Rocket Stove for cooling instead of heating.. #65766

    I am going to go out on a limb here and say: No. Unless of course you are making electricity with the rocket stove (steam engine).

    in reply to: tankless water heaters #65741

    There are many within the green building and energy efficient movement that are somewhat opposed to tankless water heaters. They are certainly the right choice for many situations especially for off grid people who already have propane infrastructure.

    However, many feel tankless are not the greenest choice for most situations. At least two very good studies (by Consumer Reports and University of MN) find that its not cost-effective to switch from existing tank water heater to tankless.

    People who are using solar to pre-heat should be aware of the problems associated with using tankless.

    Other general problems with tankless: Most dont work with low flow fixtures, Cold water sandwiches, lose supply during power outages, dependence on a non-renewable resource, a possible increase in overall energy use due to endless supply.

    Yes, tankless eliminate standby losses but if they arent the newest,cutting edge models, then their pilot lights burn just as much energy as the standby losses of a tank. There are new electric tanks available that are very efficient, simple and easy to maintain, easy to add insulation too, work great with solar, and can be fueled with renewable electricity. The new Rheem Marathons fit this description while being affordable and dont have Anode rods to maintain.

    All this being said, LP tankless makes the most sense for off grid with propane infrastructure. Just be sure to get one with electronic ignition, efficient condensing technology, and of course be aware of the effects of occupant behavior.

    in reply to: Living off grid can begin on grid #65633

    I like your point weathershaman. Iam new here and have always thought off grid living was kind of turning your back on neighbors in terms of not supplying the dirty electrical grid with excess (clean) generation. Iam interested in your philosophy and how it can be most cost effectively integrated with the existing grid. I understand that a majority of off griders do not have easy access to it so it wouldnt really apply in that situation.

    in reply to: Help me plan to live completely off the grid? #65634

    Wind is awesome if you have it. So is Micro-Hydro which is probably the most cost effective option under equally ideal scenarios.

    Gordo, Iam guessing you like the Oregon Cob due to its DIY nature? What exactly is the main difference between it and regular cob? Doesnt really seem like its a good fit to cold climates due to poor R value..

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