To be honest, most people really don’t grasp the gravity of this concept. Taking a traditional home “off grid” that might have an average electric bill of around $200 per month would likely cost you over $100,000, take 3 times more solar than what would fit on the roof, and would require $40,000 in battery replacement in about 5 years. There are so many variables it’s not even funny. Then, once you nail down the theoretical requirement for equipment to meet your usage, and peak demand, and the ability to recharge the battery bank within one a day period; you can now double that price if you want more than one day of autonomy. Now factor in what you intend to do when the weather is bad for a sustained period of time.
If you are serious about going off-grid, the first key is to level your daily consumption year-round. This means your consumption is basically the same each day in the winter, spring, summer, and fall. Then, you need to reduce this levelized consumption as much as physically possible. This can be done by changing your stove and dryer to gas, changing all of your light bulbs to LED’s, change out your windows to highly insulated windows, add attic insulation, change out your hot water heater to gas or solar, and buy new air conditioners that are either solar or extreme efficiency. This list honestly goes on and on, but realistically; if you can get your consumption down to about 500 kWh’s or less per month and avoid surges and high peaks, you might be able to pull it off. We are happy to help. The reality, however, is that most of these conversations euthanize themselves because people have unrealistic expectations and misinterpret what they have heard about the value of solar today.
Grid-tied solar is a perfect fit in the middle; giving the customer the luxury of being on the grid with long-term value and savings, while not having the excessive cost of batteries.