Having a home wind turbine gives you the ability to produce pollution free energy. You can lower your utility bills by using wind to power your home.
How a Home Turbine Works
A home wind turbine generates electricity. Wind turns the blades on the home wind turbine. The turning blades spins a shaft that is connected to the turbine, thereby creating power.
Sustaining Your Turbine
Before deciding to construct a home wind turbine, you need to consider some factors. Ways to determine if your area is windy enough and which direction the wind usually occurs are as follows:
- Look at the trees to see the most prevalent wind direction;
- Take notice during storms as to the direction of the wind;
- Get information about wind in your area from local airports and weather stations;
- Use data from the U.S. Department of Energy.
Size and Placement
At least 9,400 kilowatts a year are needed to properly power an average household. So you may need a home wind turbine in the range of 5 to 15 kilowatts. A manufacture can give you an accurate size for a home wind turbine according to your electricity needs.
Most home wind turbines are placed on roofs but some people prefer to have their wind turbines on a tower. It’s your decision but keep in mind that if you do mount your home wind turbine on the roof there is a chance of structural damage occurring in severe winds.
There are two types of towers to mount your home wind turbine.
- Stationary tower
- Tilt-up tower
A stationary tower is sturdy and anchored. You do have to climb it in order to install, maintain, or remove the home wind turbine. You can use a crane but it is an added expense and not always readily available.
The tilt-up tower is hinged to move up and down allowing you to do everything from the ground.
Whether you mount your home wind turbine on your roof or a tower it must be free of obstructions. You need at least 30 feet above any obstacles and 300 feet away from any objects that can interfere with the home wind turbine operation. Also, remember that you don’t want to mount your home wind turbine too low because wind velocity increases with altitude thus creating greater energy output.
Power backup System
You need to have some kind of power backup system in case there is no wind or your home wind turbine stops working. Types of power backup systems include solar power or an installed on and off grid system. The grid system enables you to receive electricity from the power company when your turbine is not generating power and to sell any surplus electricity to the utility.
Constructing Your Own
You can purchase detailed plans that will take you step by step through the process of building your own home wind turbine. Plans and materials should cost you no more than $200. Materials can easily be found at the hardware store.