They have 2 solar power systems to power everything they need. The first solar system is just one solar panel that generates 12-Volt power for their lights, cell phones, and music player. The larger system is a 2.5 Kilowatt solar power system installed on their shop roof with a lithium ion battery bank that powers their full-sized fridge, a chest freezer, washing machine, as well as a mixer, blender and a toaster. They have a backup generator but they only have to use it for about 40 hours per year during prolonged cloudy or snowy periods.
All of the water the family uses is rainwater collected from their shop roof and stored in a tank under the shop floor to keep it cool. They carry buckets of water into the house for cooking, dishes and showers. To produce clean drinking water, they filter their rainwater in a passive water filter called a Burkey (check them out here: http://www.berkeyfilters.com).
The grey water from their kitchen sink and shower drains into a shallow grey water field in the backyard.
They have 2 composting bucket toilets and they sprinkle sawdust into the buckets after each use to absorb moisture and prevent smells.
For heat, they cut their own firewood for their Blaze King catalytic wood stove, and for their antique cookstove in the kitchen that they use for cooking and baking.
Jeff and Rose homeschool their 5 girls for a few hours each day and also ensure that their kids are learning diverse life skills like growing their own food, caring for horses, raising bees, and more.
We’re very impressed with the clever solutions this family has come up with to make off-grid living seem so easy.
If you want to learn more about this inspiring family and follow their journey, check out their Gridlessness project — they have a blog and a YouTube channel.
Gridlessness YouTube Channel:
Thanks for watching!
Mat & Danielle
STAY IN TOUCH!
Music & Song Credits:
All music in this video was composed, performed, and recorded by Mat Dubé of Exploring Alternatives.