Recently, a major automobile manufacturer made headlines when they unveiled a new line of solar panels, and more Americans than ever are interested in homesteading and in living “off the grid.” If you’re thinking of moving to a more rural area, there are a few things that you should know before you make your big move.
You’re probably going to want to contract for residential propane service. Propane is actually a byproduct of the petroleum industry and is widely used by people whose homes are not connected to city gas lines. One of the benefits of residential propane use is that you will still have heat and hot water in the event of a widespread power outage: you can keep working and getting the kids on the bus to school without missing a beat. If you are living in a more rural area and you do have a connection to city gas, you may want to contract with a residential propane service as a backup. The price of propane can vary, but you should look for local contractors who can deliver.
Propane fuel can also help hunters dry and smoke their own meat. While you may not own your own tank, if you have a large-scale meat processing operation in effect, you may want to look into propane tanks that are rent-to-own or able to be purchased outright. The size of the tank is not as important as making sure that all the valves are in good working order: local tankless water heater and propane contractors can talk to homeowners about the possibility of investing in a residential propane tank.
More Americans than ever are interested in recycling and in reducing the amount of garbage that they send to landfills. We each produce more than four pounds of garbage every day, and if you live off the grid, you can reduce your carbon footprint by making your own compost pile. Composting is a way to recycle food scraps, leaves, and other organic debris into soil. Buying new gardening soil each year can be expensive, and if you pay for garbage removal, you may be tired of paying for the city to remove bags of leaves. You can work those leaves into your compost and reduce the amount of food waste that your family throws away.
Of course, solar panels can help you save on residential propane service. If you’re serious about growing your own food and recycling at home, you may want to install solar panels to offset the cost of heating your home. Solar panel technology has continued to evolve over the past three decades: the newest solar panels are built right into sections of roofing tile. The tiles look like a regular roof does, but surprisingly, they function as energy saving solar panels. You’ll still want to do water heating with propane: there is a small energy loss on the new solar panels that scientists are working to fix, but if you have residential propane service, you could stand to save money by investing in solar panels.
If you grow your own vegetables in greenhouses, you can also make good use of solar panels and residential propane service. Being off the grid is about finding solutions to everyday problems with creativity and determination: the more that you have backup solutions — and reliable propane heat — in place, the more creative you can become. Working in an office isn’t for everyone. There are millions of Americans who are looking for a way out of the city and into the country, and with modern technology, homesteaders may have an easier time making a go of their country dreams.