Backup Battery For Home
Backup Battery For Home TIPS
- Standby generators create power for days if you keep them fueled
- Massive amounts of batteries required to deliver tens of thousands of kilowatts per hour
- Battery production is messy and causes pollution
- Batteries can be enormously expensive
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Malcom O'Dell, who lives in the land of rainbows and unicorns in Washington, DC, came to my website, saw a column I wrote about portable electric generators - and possibly one about standby generators - and proceeded to take me to the woodshed to bust my chops. Read for yourself:
"Why do you recommend environmentally unfriendly electric generators when for no more money homeowners can buy battery back-up systems that--like the ubiquitous computer UPS backup--instantly restores power with no delay, and can keep basic systems going for hours, even days?
Our family has used these systems in our homes and even large offices for years in developing countries where power goes down routinely. They are simple, cost-effective, and cost no more than a generator.. and they eliminate all the noise and toxic fume pollution of generators.
The batteries charge with a simple trickle charger when power is available from the lines and can be supplemented, for even more environmentally performance, by solar panels. And, with a sizable array of solar panels, the homeowner or office can become substantially or even completely off the grid, never dependent on failing public power utilities.
Time for Tim, Ask the Builder, to look at modern environmentally friendly technology.. and address climate change at the same time.
Home Runs At The Pit
Malcom's soapbox statement reminded me of when I used to play softball with my buddies back in the late 1960's. We played at "The Pit" - the playground behind Clifton School in Cincinnati, OH. I routinely hit pitches over the fence out onto McAlpin Avenue.
Malcom, you just served up a juicy ball that's I'm going to turn into a frozen rope.
Free & Fast Bids
Solar Power Is The Answer
The first thing I want to say is I'm in complete agreement with Malcom about the promise of solar. I think the future is extracting clean energy using photovoltaic (PV) panels.
There's going to be some yet-to-be-discovered technology advancement that will cause PV panels to become mainstream. Right now, the average person simply can't make the numbers work to get a payback in a short amount of time.
The other issue with PV panels is the active photons in sunlight destroy the current panels at a slow rate. Hopefully some future affordable technology will address this issue.
As the panels degrade, they put out less electricity.
Malcom, the portable generators I wrote about cost less than $1,000 in 2014. The standby generators average about $10,000 installed.
Standby Generator Video
Here's a video showing you the fantastic and reliable Kohler standby generator at my own home.
Massive Batteries For Normal Power
Where in the world can you get a battery backup system that will deliver electricity to a home for " ... hours, even days." as you said for $10,000 or LESS? I'm not talking about a few hundred watts of electricity for hours or days. I'm talking about 2,000 or even 5,000 watts of clean power per hour for hours and hours and hours.
Source of USA Electricity
Malcom, are you aware how the power that comes through the lines and enters the batteries' trickle charger is made?
Most commercial power in the USA is made with FOSSIL FUELS. I believe that's your complaint with regular generators - that they use "Unfriendly" environmental liquids.
My guess is you use them - as many of us do - each day when you drive to work, the grocery store, etc.
Possibly More Efficient
Now granted, the massive power plants are probably more efficient at producing a kilowatt of electricity per Btu of fossil fuel than the portable or standby generators, but then there's that pesky voltage loss over the power lines that extend from the power plants to your home and office.
Toxic Mining Tailings
Oh, don't forget the mine tailings from all the mines in the third-world countries where the elements are clawed from the Earth to make the magical batteries you so love. My guess is all the rivers in the area of the mines are poisoned with heavy metals that leach from the mine tailings.
Air Pollution From Smelting!
I almost forgot the air pollution from the smelting process! Once the rocks have been mined for the batteries, they have to be smelted - melted - to extract the lithium, nickel, cadmium, etc.
I doubt those smelters in those third-world countries have all the scrubbers on them that are mandated by our EPA. I guess Mother Nature removes all the pollution out of the air via rain before they'd ever float over us here in the USA.
Time To Help Others
I'm sure I've forgotten something or other major points, but I need to scoot to answer other questions from other AsktheBuilder.com visitors.
If you want to continue the discussion, feel free to do it in the comments below.