Living in a cottage doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg in the long run!
So, you’re getting a new cottage or you’re about to build one. Wait! You’re going to want to hear this before you start!
Time and time again, we have our clients and networks tell us how costly and expensive it is to run electricity out to the rural areas of cottage country. The same sentiments can be had when initially thinking about solar. They’re both costly! However, one is almost always a better choice.
If you need to install electricity from the grid, you’re going to need a power line & pole installed. Depending on where you are in the world, each pole can range between $5 000 to $10 000. Most of our clients usually require at least 2 poles to get from their property to their cottage. On top of the poles, there’s still the issue of wiring, digging, transformers, the meters and other supplementary components for you to hook up to the grid. Even if it wasn’t about the upfront costs, after everything is said and done, you’re still looking at monthly electric bills that you’d have to pay the utilities for using their electricity. As an additional kicker, if you shut down your cottage for the season, you’re still on the hook for “delivery fees”, even if nothing is being delivered.
You could say that your electric bill is a gift that keeps on giving. It’s a system that continually reaches into your pocket for your hard earned money.
If we were to moderately estimate the prices for installation, we’re still looking at costs that are easily in excess of $10 000-$20 000.
$10 000 – $20 000 + more fees = Yikes
If we were to take all that money and invest it into solar, we would be looking at a fairly robust cottage system. The first thing you’d need to do is to size your energy consumption and figure out what you need. When saving energy, it could be as easy as turning something off when you’re not using; like lights, or small appliances. It’s something that’s taught and instilled into the fiber of our being. Use only what you need.
However, there is one thing that you never turn off! That’s right! Your refrigerator! So, of course, it makes life a little more difficult because… well… having food and being able to store food is a pretty cool thing. (Pun was absolutely intended)
However, we do have a solution with our highly efficient Voltray Solar Refrigerator. More on that later.
The other thing you need to keep in mind is that Solar still isn’t a viable option for anything heat related. So that means, no boilers, coffee machines, ovens, stovetops and many more minor things we take for granted. Though there are still solutions for that. You can probably kill multiple stones with one stone with a pellet stove and the like. It can provide heating and a means of cooking too! How cool is that? Something rustic for the cottage space!
So now we’ve figured out heating and heat-related issues, let’s look at the actual build itself. For about $10 000, you can easily get a proper 1.84kW system. That’s our Advanced Kit #4, loaded with a 4000W Magnum Charger/Inverter and 840AH battery in 24V. A system like this can easily recover 380AH on a good sunny day in 5 hours. Our Voltray 11.1cuft Solar Refrigerator only consumes about 35AH a day. That’s barely 10% of the power recovery. You easily have more than 300AH of power left to do whatever you want for the day. That’s quite a bit of juice left over. It wouldn’t be farfetched, to say the least, that you can get some high efficiency LED lights and have your entire space lit up by that same battery pack. In fact, Televisions and other small electronics work well under these circumstances too. Just cut out the microwave and you can see how far this battery pack will take you.
So… let’s have a summary then…
For an excess of $10 000 – $20 000, you can get your utilities to install some power poles to get you grid fed power. Maybe. Then, they’ll charge you varying rates that always seem to go up in cost year over year for some reason and the delivery charges even if you’re not home. You get the gift of accumulated costs that accumulate even more over time.
You could look at solar. Which, for $10 000, you could get a system that would robustly run our Voltray Solar Refrigerators amongst many other small appliances and lights. You wouldn’t ever need to pay another dime during the lifetime of the batteries. That, and if you’ve sized your systems accordingly, would get you the most reliable and consistent form of energy… the Sun! So long as the sun shines, you’ll never have to worry about blackouts, brownouts, or any kind of network related power issues. The icing on the side is that there are no reoccurring monthly fees. You can modify the system to suit your needs. If you need to expand… expand! Solar panels are usually rated for 25 years, but some have been going strong for 40. Again… no monthly fees, no nickel and diming, no random charges with abbreviated clauses that aren’t clear and have no real defined reason for existing on your electric bill.
So… now that you’ve reached this point, you have to ask yourself. Why not solar?
Feel free to reach out to us and ask us more!