Will This Be You Next Time?

Jun 30, 2023 | Uncategorized

Will This Be You Next Time?

“No power since the storm this afternoon.  Generac would be nice about now.. lol.  Tomorrow it will be 90 degrees and another bunch of bad storms coming in possibly Friday and Saturday nights.  Cannot wait. 

Hoping I don’t lose my fridge and freezers packed full…”

I received an email yesterday from a subscriber to my Youtube channel, we’ll call Jill.  Freezer stocked full of food and without electricity it’ll all be lost in short order.

Electricity runs the world, my friends. Without it, we’re going to be in a world of hurt. Intermittent electricity, while better than none at all, isn’t the answer either for a society that uses 900 kWh’s a month on average per household. 

We need a reliable grid to provide the electricity that powers our lives.  Sadly because of the fools spouting “green” energy we’re moving away from solidifying our grid which will inherently lead to more blackouts.

The irony of all ironies is that Sweden is leading the way in common sense. The country that pretend Socialists like Bernie Sanders have held high for decades as a Socialist paradise is paving the way to build new nuclear plants.  On top of their somewhat sane Covid response I’ve grown quite fond of Sweden over the past five years.  

In Jill’s email she said a “Generac would be nice about now.” Indeed, a whole house backup generator would be nice. However, those things aren’t cheap and frankly how many times would you actually use it? I’ve had people with whole house generators tell me they’ve only used it once or twice in over a dozen years. Is that worth the $15,000 or so to install one? I don’t know. Not for me. I don’t have that kind of scratch just laying around for a device that I may use once or twice. 

Yes, I hear you, when that time comes to use your Generac you’ll be glad you have it.  I get it. It only takes a couple of days to ruin someone. I’m from Maine after all and when the cold hits and you’ve been convinced a heat pump is the way to go, you better have a doggone wood stove when the power goes out. That heat pump won’t be worth a Confederate dollar at that point. 

Thankfully though there are other less expensive solutions to at least run your fridge to keep your food from spoiling.  First off you need BATTERIES!  Batteries are key to all off-grid electricity.  When the grid goes down you’re inherently OFF-GRID, by the way. 

I’ve been using lead acid deep-cycle marine batteries for electricity storage for years.  They work well but man, oh man, are they heavy.  Here’s a smallish Deep Cycle Marine battery.

Weighs 37 pounds. Stores 55 Amp Hours of electricity.  Not a bad product in the least.  But some of the bigger batteries weigh much more and trying to move a battery to a location in which to run your appliances isn’t fun if the thing weighs a million pounds. 

So I just bought this guy as a birthday present to myself. 

I’ll be 53 in a few days. 53…crazy. I literally could be taking Social Security in less than ten years yet I don’t feel like a middle-aged man. That’s the creepy part. I still feel young.  

Pretty significant difference in price between the two batteries. The Lithium battery holds nearly twice the Amp Hours and is a third less heavy. Is that worth the extra cost? I certainly think so. Your mobility with batteries is actually quite important. If the battery is too heavy to move you’ll have a stationary electricity source where you have to run long extension cords throughout the house.  

That’s not a deal breaker mind you, but it does add costs and the longer the distance the electrons have to bang into each other the less efficient your system is. 

For me, I like the idea of having a battery moved right next to the appliance I want to run which in this case would be a fridge or an ice box.

My fridge, by the way is a bit over 5 amps. Which means this fully charged battery could run my fridge for 20 hours.  Obviously, it wouldn’t make sense to run it full time. You’d run it…intermittently…there’s that word again, in order to keep your food from spoiling.  But hopefully you get how it works, take the Amp hours of storage of your battery, in this case 100, divide by the number of Amps of your appliance and that is the max amount of time you’d get from a fully charged battery. 

The more Amp Hours of reserve of your battery the more time you have to run your appliances and of course the more expensive your battery will be too.

Remember though, you need an intermediary in order to run your appliances off your battery.  Your appliances use Alternating Current (AC) and 120 volts. Your battery is 12 volts and direct current. So  need an inverter in order to match the two. Thankfully, inverters are not very expensive. Here’s a 1500 Watt Energizer inverter for only $150. 

What you do is use those black and red cables to hook up to your battery and then plug your fridge into the outlet on the inverter.  Easy Peasy. See my video from Dec. 2017 on how to do this here

Will 1500 Watts be enough to run my fridge? Absolutely. To figure out the Watts your appliances uses simply take the Amps, in this case my fridge is a bit more than 5 amps and times by 120 which is the volts that American appliances use.  That’s 600 Watts for my fridge.  Now, when the compressor kicks on there is a bit more load for a brief time but a 1500 inverter will run my fridge just fine. 

So, to wrap this up. We have an appliance, in this case my fridge, that is 5 Amps. We have a battery that is 100 Amp Hours. We have a 1500 Watt inverter and we have the cables to hook the battery and inverter together.  VOILA!  That’s all you need to run your fridge off-grid. Nothing fancy at all. Not very expensive either.

Now, I hear you, but what do you do when the battery is out of juice.  Well in that case you have to recharge it. If you keep a full tank of gas in your car you can easily recharge your batteries by running your vehicle.  If not, I have videos on trying to charge my marine batteries on a 100Watt solar panel here and here

If you’re interested in setting up your own small DIY portable Solar set up, sign up for Nomad Brad’s course on how do this here. The price for the course has gone up to $97 since I first introduced it to you but I still think it’s a worthwhile investment to learn the basics of solar.  Be advised, I’m now an affiliate of this course. So if you sign up through the link provided I get paid. If you don’t want your ole Buddy Josh to get paid sign up without using my link. 

No, I’m not “going green” as Solar is not green first of all. And no, solar will never run our economy. It’s silly to even suggest this and when people do I know they’re not serious people so I pay them no mind. But solar CAN provide you an alternative way to run your appliances in order keep the lights on and your food from spoiling for a very cost effective price too. This is why I like Brad’s course so much because it’s an introductory guide to learning about solar. 

Look in your fridge and ice box. How much did that meat cost you? If it were to go bad, you’d be out some bucks wouldn’t you? Even worse is you still need to eat which means you’ll have to buy some food to replace what you’ve lost. It’s a lose/lose scenario. Don’t lose money, that’s investing 101.