off grid heat
A brief description of our experience with a masonry heater.
This is the last of a series in home and energy options available to us. It is a short summary of all of the choices we have when designing a new home on or off grid that will benefit your energy use.
Unforgettable Fire's Kimberly and Katydid wood stoves are heating solutions for any and all spaces.
How we avoid most clutter but manage to keep good leftover products for future use.
Cam is handling this heatwave much better thanks to his solar-powered air conditioner!
With winter beginning, these homesteaders are starting winter off cozy in their cabin.
Rancho Margot in Costa Rica is completely off the grid and constantly closing the circle. Nothing is wasted on this self-sufficient ranch, where everything is considered a resource--including methane from the compost ovens.
A comparison of costs between on grid and off grid utilities for our circumstances.
A typical day of activity on a modern homestead and off grid.
Things that occur when switching from summer to winter mode. Fall is almost non existent.
When Paula and Matt learned that running a utility line to their rural Vermont home would cost the same as buying solar panels, they never hesitated. Now they're living the good life, off the grid.
Going off the grid offers complete energy independence — no utility bills, no grid outages, ever — but it takes some effort, and you will need to learn how to conserve energy.
Selecting a power option for your homestead.
This blog is an introduction to how we went from a condominium lifestyle to off grid modern homesteading in the mountains. It also includes an explanation of the meaning of "off grid".
This blog is about all of the choices we have for the type of home we want for off grid living and some of the construction materials involved. It turns out there are a multitude of options we have to choose from.
Things you can do to prevent fire damage to your home from an external source.
A quick look at different ways to be sustainable whether you are off grid or not.
Two easy steps to reduce your electrical use whether you live off grid or not.
A simple explanation of our solar power generating system and cost.
Tips on how to keep water away from your home and water damage prevention.
A short history of my own horse riding adventures.
A description and pictures of a tornado force winds in Washington State in 2012.
Success at growing food at the 4200' elevation and some of the challenges.
When we moved into the country, we had no idea that small critters would be such a nuisance.
How we have adapted from salt water fishing to freshwater and what we do with our catch.
Some of the downside of free ranging your chickens.
Design features we incorporated into our new off grid home.
Fun facts about our first year of blogging for Mother Earth News.
A brief description of how we grow fresh vegetables in our long cold winters.
A brief description of our experiences with solar tubes in our off grid home.
A description about something unique - a wood burning masonry kitchen stove.
How both we and the chickens have gotten better at surviving the cold winters where we live.
What it is like to live higher up.
A short simple explanation of how to project your electrical needs in order to size your electrical off grid system.
This post is about our water cisterns and what we use them for. It also contains a caution that many local governments would like to tell you what you can and can't do with rainwater.
Things to look for in your soil before you break ground on your new home or cabin.
An article about when the best time is to start a new homestead.
Blog post number 17: Jeff solves the problem of how to use higher-efficiency D/C power for long run-time loads, while using some A/C appliances as well.
These are the first steps we took to make the change from city living to off grid living. It describes the questions you should ask before you buy property and the research required to make sure you can do want you want with your property.
Liza Fleischer was a suburbanite through and through when she met her husband, Ted, who she says was "born 100 years too late." Now they live in a solar- and hydro-powered hand-built home on 160 acres in Vermont--and she loves it.
Deb and Tommy have spent just $7,500 to set up their off-the-grid homestead in Oklahoma's Kiamichi Mountains, which relies on one 80-watt solar panel for power. As they learn more, they will continue to build their systems.
If you want to live independently, it's always good to have backup because no one else is coming to the rescue. This is how we did it.
After a wildfire destroyed their off-the-grid compound in Colorado, Betty and Rolland rebuilt—better than before—following Rolland’s creed: no plywood, no plastic and nothing that smells bad when it burns. The wildlife around their home approve.
Lack of interest threatens ClimateSmart, a program that helps PG&E customers in California offset their carbon emissions, is about to be cut.
A look at the advantages and disadvantages of “off-grid” and "grid-tied” solar electric systems.
Michael Strizki proves that living off the grid doesn't have to mean sacrificing comfort.
What's the most efficient way to boil water?
Cam shares some of the things he is grateful for....
Technology allows us to live where we live, but it doesn't make it any easier to deal with!
Cam describes a recent adventure involving round bales, train tracks and a stressful drive home.
We look for materials bargains while devising a way to pay for it all.
Cam discusses the decision to go off-grid or on-grid and shares his experience with batteries and the dangers of high winds to solar panels.
Sometimes being off grid doesn't necessarily mean that you're green.
Developing a sense of place by shaping and stewarding the landscape.
Instead of throwing out that empty feedbag, get creative and turn it into something new! Homesteader Ed Essex shares ideas for finding new uses for old objects.
There are a lot of things you can do right now to experience the homestead lifestyle right in your backyard.
Sharing our first experience with an indoor/outdoor vertical hydroponic garden.
Each year we learn more and more about living off grid and homesteading. These are just a few of the third-year experiences we wanted to share.
The documentary film “Beyond Off-Grid” is nearing completion and includes a dozen specialists across the United States living self-reliant lifestyles.
Learning to appreciate seasonal differences.
The cost to install and operate our solar electrical system.
The benefits of limited lighting and no electricity.
Providing your own sewer, water and power can be more expensive and is certainly less convenient but that's not all there is to consider. This article takes a look at some of the other differences between public and private services.
It takes commitment and determination to live remotely in the mountains.
How to cope mentally with living in a remote location.
Details on a cool new carbon offset program from Volkswagen.
Options for phone service if you live in a remote location that doesn't have cell service or landlines available to you.
Our take on the positive and negative points of insulated concrete forms.
Where we have chosen to draw the line between convenience and sustainability - for now.
An article about how we learned to double our growing season and have home grown fresh veggies almost all year long.
Tips for snow removal around your house and down the road.
Short stories about our chicken experiences
After the snow leaves to do list for us.
Our first experience as a vendor or spectator at the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, WA
How to make your OWN insulated window coverings.
How and why we chose to have a livestock guardian dog and what they are like.
Costs associated with providing your own water.
Things we have done to earn an income from home in a down economy.
A snapshot of winter life living remote and off grid.
In this blog we share someone else's story about old fashioned home made ingenuity concerning deep well pumps that operate without electricity.
How we stay busy in the winter even though we live at 4200', three miles off the road, and somewhat isolated.
Kate and Jeff are building their off-the-grid dream near Taos, New Mexico. As they build themselves a small straw bale house and make do with a few solar panels, they're realizing how little they really need.
These seasoned off-the-grid veterans have found that hefty batteries make for a happy home.
Sue McKay Miller divested herself of nearly everything she owned and moved into a yurt in the wilderness to determine how much she really needs to live a satisfying life. Turns out, she really doesn't need much.
How to make insulated shades at home.
Short description of our solar system and the everyday things we do to operate them.
This is the hands on portion of how a solar power system operates.
Things we did to make our new home more sustainable.
Sustainsia’s compact, green-built work pod could solve my office needs.
Michael Funk's 6,000-square-foot off-the-grid home and retreat center on 1,200 acres in the Sierra Nevadas is an heirloom, handbuilt with reverence for the spectacle that surrounds it. He hopes it will inspire every visitor to preserve the paradise.
When a fire destroyed their home and office near San Luis Obispo, Ken Haggard and Polly Cooper seized the opportunity to build the off-the-grid straw bale home of their dreams. Their comfortable compound now houses two other families as well.
The difference between power and energy and how it relates to toast!
Cam shares his experiences getting lost in the woods.
A typical winter morning chore - cleaning off the solar panels.
Cam describes the benefits of writing this blog and his recent book.
again, rushing to beat the weather as we close in our finishing our hand-built cabin
Our experiences in learning to pressure can and use reusable canning lids.
A look back at how we’ve become addicted to electricity and its conveniences since the Great Depression.
How did Victoria Redhed Miller and husband David end up living on an off-grid homestead in the foothills of Washington State's Olympic mountains? Grid? What grid? Electricity was something one took for granted; it came from those outlets on the walls. I was hardly aware of it except during one of the infrequent power outages.
Learn about our experience attending a Mother Earth News Fair as an exhibitor.
An upcoming inspirational documentary, “Beyond Off-Grid,” that strives to motivate people to return to the old paths, includes self-sufficiency experts from around the country. A MOTHER EARTH NEWS blog prompted the producer to contact us.
Renewable energy is often seen as a way to have it all and still feel “green” and it is indeed at a glance more environment friendly than conventional power, but no power has as low footprint as the power not used.
Real life experiences with chickens spanning a 50 year period.
The generators we use for living off the grid and a multitude of other tasks.
Ed and Bruce compare the weather and its impact on their mountain homesteads at different elevations and mountain ranges.
Cam looks back at the challenges of moving to his off-grid home.
Mountain homesteading in a remote area.
Using snowshoes to keep our paths and trails open as the snow piles up.
Tips to help you get started planning your very own homestead. With proper planning you don't have to be experienced to do it right.
Darning socks is a simple thing to do - and a statement for self-sufficiency!
Why manual water pumps are making a comeback and how to select the right type for a homestead.
Outside of a few rare equipment failures, we’ve never had a power outage in the past 20 years that wasn’t our own fault — usually caused by not paying attention to power use or proper battery charging. Weather failures, on the other hand, are starting to become noticeable.
This part of the series deals with window size and location, ceiling heights, eave length, and other design and passive design choices you can make for your new home. These choices apply whether you are on or off the grid.
Cyndee and Tony love being in control of their own power and never having to worry about rate increases and outages in south-central Colorado. Solar panels, a wind turbine and a wood-fired boiler keep them plenty warm and happy.
Since they built their solar- and wind-powered cordwood home in Desboro, Ontario, Lisa and Ray Racicot have never looked back. The only thing they'll do differently next time is install the renewable energy systems first, to power the construction.
An amazing, off-the-grid Welsh hobbit house was built in less than four months and for less than $5,000.
Tell us what you think. If you installed a wind turbine or solar-electric panels, would you want to be tied to the electric grid, or would you rather have a grid-independent system?
When the Home Star Energy Retrofit Act of 2010 passes (as expected) this summer, be prepared by learning what to expect when you buy a water heater, heating system, air-source air conditioner or heat pump.
Rhode Island plans to install large wind far off it's Atlantic Ocean shore.
Today's a great day to follow our tips for creating a home office that's easy on you and light on the planet.
A roof is a wonderful thing to have!
Here are a few ways to know if a business is supporting green practices or not. Green practices are increasingly more and more important as companies increase and continue to have a large impact on the environment.
There are many different ways to bring solar power into your home. Here's a quick overview of the different ways people use solar energy, with links to related articles and plans.
Cleaning up an old water heater just requires two simple tools.
Adjusting the timing of your water heater could help you increase energy savings.
Who knew that making a soda so delicious was so darn easy?! This office experiment is our most rewarding yet. I mean, Marlin is cool with his aquaponic system and all, but I definitely don’t want to drink fish water. (See aquaponic blog.) Our ginger beer is so refreshing, surprisingly effervescent and just plain awesome! So you’d like to know how to make it yourself, right? Well, I will gladly share the steps and recipe with you.
An introduction to Cam Mather's off-grid home and lifestyle.
Cam contemplates the amount of energy that goes into our food production and shows how he prepared corn for freezing the zero carbon way!
A few thoughts on why so many people are hesitant to make the transition to produce their own power.
Two homesteaders discuss their experience with the weather applicable to their mountain homesteads in Washington and Colorado.
Build your own wind generator for use with 12-Volt systems. Charge up batteries for lighting, fans, tools and more.
Unit helps homeowners heat more space while slashing high hot water bills
Bread baker Heather Alf shares her experiences baking quick breads. She includes a quick and healthy easy banana bread recipe.
Jessica Kellner, editor of Natural Home & Garden, is beginning research on electric in-floor radiant floor heating products as an efficient method of heating the new nursery.
The GeoSpring hybrid water heater from GE continues its impressive run of firsts.
Weatherization Program Nearly Doubles Payback in One Easy Step with GE's new GeoSpring™ Hybrid Water Heater
You can use the power of the sun to heat water for your home using manufactured solar hot water systems or one you build yourself.
You can use a solar hot-air collector to heat your home with renewable energy. Here’s more about how they work.
Amid rising gas prices, some people think offshore drilling in America is the answer, but is it worth it? Also, read an opinion piece by Mark Weisbrot.
On Sept. 30, the offshore drilling moratorium expired, and the energy battle between the Democrats and Republicans began.
Ode to our hand saw...why we choose to live without power, and what we've accomplished by hand.
Once our bodies and our imaginations are engaged, the incremental change begins. Then it gets easier and easier to envision humanity occupying this planet–this beautiful, abundant planet–far into the future.
We finally build somthing!
Cam loves sharing his homesteading skills in Hands-On Workshops at his off-grid home.
Cam & Michelle recently enjoyed a visit from an ethnographer who is studying off-gridders.
After only a few nights with a wood stove in the tipi, I've become happily addicted to warmth I have to work for.
When it's cold outside, who doesn't love a cozy fireplace or woodstove? Wood heat is a comfortable way to warm your home, and there are many reasons it's a practical choice, too.
High efficiency air source heat pumps are proving their worth for cold climate heating and cooling.
Although forced air is the most common form of home heat in North America it is far from ideal. This article explains why Building Biology regards the masonry heater as the ultimate heating system for health, comfort and ecology.
Radiant floor heating may save energy in the average home, but for especially well insulated new houses, here's why it's probably not your best option.
Use old jars to make these cute, inexpensive candle lanterns--for a fraction of what you'd pay if you bought them at the store.
As Offlining urges cyborgs to turn off their Blackberries, Neo-Luddites question technology's exponential encroachment on our lives.
A strong partnership between Cascades and Office Depot to deliver on customer need for softness and strength while significantly reducing total environmental impact.
Your local county extension office can answer questions on gardening, livestock, poultry, crops, garden pests and more.
Heat Recovery innovator produces a safe hot water heating system kit for wood stoves.
For the last week we had no propane and as a result I have had to cook all of my food on an electric skillet. Holy week usually involves a lot of baking in preparation for Easter Sunday.
This blog teaches readers how to make homemade Greek-style yogurt.
How to make a quick, healthy dessert on Three Kings Day.
Includes two recipes to enjoy over the holidays along with time saving tips.
The thrill continues living in our handmade house.
Announcing an opportunity to get Anna's new Ebook for free today at Amazon on the subject of homesteading in a mobile home otherwise known as a trailer.
We haul our water from the river - walking water!
Making the most of a winter walk to home.
Kerr-Cole Sustainable Living Center in Taylor, Arizona celebrates national homesteading month with a display of solar ingenuity.
An explosion at a British Petroleum oil rig has caused a massive and growing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico just off the Lousiana coast. Here is an account of where the spill stands at the moment.
In light of the environmental, economic and other damage caused by the Gulf oil spill, has your opinion about increased domestic drilling changed? Yes or no, we want to hear your thoughts on the topic.
Hundreds of Gulf Coast oil spill workers have fallen ill with flu-like symptoms related to oil exposure. News reports claim that BP is not allowing workers to wear respirators, despite the potential long-term respiratory and neurological consequences workers could face.
University of Maine leads the United States in clean-energy technology, thanks to the development of a grid-connected wind turbine off the coast of Maine.
Jeff and wife Kathy have lived off-grid since 2002. They strive to inform the public about ways to live inexpensively, and to further the principle of sustainability. Visit their website to learn more: www.naturalpower.weebly.com
Has the "magic" energy solution been discovered?
We finally see walls and a loft floor.
We settle in for a long winter's work.
Instead of learning new tricks, we devise new ways to do the same old tricks.
Our humble abode begins to take shape.
Our power system begins to take shape.
We bring power from the array inside the building and put it to work.
At last, we construct the foundation.
Find the right type of insulation for a Solar Heat Grabber from MOTHER EARTH NEWS.
Try these DIY methods to help warm up a cold basement.
Once built, this window-mounted heat grabber should give you years of dependable service.
FCX Oil-Fired Condensing Boilers, designed and manufactured by Geminox, provide a reliable and efficient alternative to non-condensing boilers. FCX Boilers feature a steel, non-condensing primary heat exchanger coupled with a stainless steel, condensing secondary heat exchanger.
Here are a few talking points that can help peacefully resolve home heating arguments.
This post informs readers on the advantages of using whey in baking. It includes a recipe for whole wheat sandwich bread.
The tankless water heater new design adheres to our corporate philosophy of practicing the Three Rs; of Reduce, Recycle and Reuse.
The Obama administration announced yesterday that it will place solar panels and a solar hot water heater on the White House roof by spring 2011.
One of the easiest ways to bask and rejoice in the gifts of nature is to make and use a solar wall heater.
Heating water with the sun is no longer an option on the Hawaiian islands. A bill was passed in Hawaii that requires all new homes to install a solar water heater in order to receive a building permit.
New investment in clean energy reached $243 billion last year, driven by soaring activity in China, offshore wind and European rooftop photovoltaics
Prestyl USA’s customizable infrared art panels prove efficient, ecological & elegant.
Here's why a heat pump might be a good choice for your home.
Things that come to mind while watching my husband and son work in this heat.
September is here and I'm expecting the weather to break!
Heating with wood in a cast iron stove.
Last December, the Quimby family paid $1,100 to heat and power their Winthrop, Maine, farmhouse for the month. Something had to be done. Jeld Wen, manufacturer of energy efficient doors and windows, came to the rescue.
How big a woodlot would I need to heat my home with wood for the entire winter?
Even after 15 years, Cam still loves heating his home with wood that he cuts himself.
Although the well that caused the BP oil spill is now dead, the spill’s effects live on. Debate about oil dispersants, such as Corexit, and concerns regarding the settled oil on the ocean floor that came from Deepwater Horizon continue to grow. To understand how the spill impacted and continues to affect the Gulf of Mexico, MOTHER EARTH NEWS spoke with Ronald J. Kendall, director of the Institute of Environmental and Human Health at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas.
Recent approval by the Obama administration of the Massachusetts based Cape Wind project creates the potential for 130 offshore wind turbines, which are predicted to produce up to 468 megawatts of wind power.
Cam describes the zen-like state he achieves while splitting firewood.
The Gourmet Butcher explains the best ways to re-heat red meats.
Weatherizing your home saves you money. Just a few simple changes can greatly reduce the amount of energy your home requires to stay comfortable. Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence fills you in on how to weatherize your home and collect stimulus money.
Here are the pros and cons of using south facing windows for home heating, rather than solar collectors.
Have you found helpful ways to cut your energy use at home? Whether it's turning down the thermostat or installing new light bulbs, tell us what you've done to conserve energy and how well it's worked.
An affordable prototype home helps revitalize a blighted Syracuse, New York, neighborhood--and could be the city home of the future.
Tulikivi provides a “green” cost-effective heating solution because it uses less wood to heat the same space than with a traditional wood burner.
Let's stop for a minute and think about what we are doing!
Simran Sethi teams up with two neighbors to "grow food, not lawns."
Simran Sethi starts dreaming of spring gardening, with the goal of renewing her efforts to grow real food.
Heat Holder thermal socks are the perfect gift for dads on the go.
Energy-efficient home comfort product makes central HVAC systems and auxiliary heating and cooling appliances more effective.
How I have gone full circle from coal heat, heat pump to wood heat.
Watering 800 berry plants and 300 peach trees is essential in this oppressive heat!
This describes how older individuals can take steps to keep themselves cool on very hot days.
If you’re a market gardener battling the heat, you’ll want to check out these great tips for keeping yourself and your crops cool.
The Oak Ridge National Laboratory recently released a report discussing Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and its possibility as an energy solution.
Do you have a woodstove or pellet stove at home? We’d like to hear more about your experiences with woodstoves and any tips you may have for heating with wood.
Heat Holders keep in the heat in your feet.
How having a rhythm and routine assists in accomplishing difficult tasks.
In order to maintain an internal body temperature of 98.6 F, the body perspires or sweats. As the sweat evaporates off the skin it cools the body. The trouble starts when the humidity is so high that the air is saturated with moisture and sweat drips off of you rather than evaporating. My method for avoiding Heat Stroke is called Getting Grounded in the Garden.
A 3-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
From switching out light bulbs to bundling up your water heater, environmental journalist, Simran Sethi, shares some simple and stress-free tips on how to save energy in your home.
WiseWay Pellet Stove is the first and only EPA-certified and UL-listed non-electric pellet stove on the market today. This pellet stove eliminates the need for electricity by using a gravity-feed natural draft to accomplish a high efficiency rating of 75 percent. It’s capable of heating up to 2,000 square feet and able to hold a fire up to 31 hours on a 40-pound bag of pellets. The stove is also mobile home approved.
Being in control of your own home heating.
Providing the firewood to heat his home has become a pleasurable hobby for Cam Mather.
Cam loves growing his own heat!
Cam hates to see good scrap wood go to waste and so he cuts it into kindling and has even started selling it!
Cam describes how the seasons progress through one messy task after another at Sunflower Farm.
The Snail, the winner of Electrolux Design Lab 2010 Competition, saves both energy and space by heating food with magnetic induction.
Senator Bernie Sanders’ new bill would promote installation of 10 million new rooftop solar energy systems and 200,000 solar hot water heating systems in the United States in the next decade.
Find out how to enter our Solar Giveaway.
Have you thought about adding more insulation to your home to reduce your energy bills? Here are some good places to go for more information.
Find out what types of federal tax incentives are available for homeowners who install renewable energy.
Steve explains a little about why he chose to install reclaimed cast-iron radiators, including a video tour of his installation.
The invention of clear window glass allowed the ancient Romans to trap solar energy to enhance their gardening techniques to grow vegetables out of season and exotic non-native plants in Rome. A thousand years later, empire builders in Europe rediscovered the trapping of solar heat with clear window glass so they as well could enjoy the foreign plants in their own back yard and grow native vegetables throughout the year.
To see how much solar heat could be trapped by glass, Horace de Saussure, in 1767 built a solar hot box that consisted of several glass sheets covering an insulated box. Solar heat accumulated in the solar hot box, reaching temperatures far above the boiling point of water
A blog about the joys of wood heat that covers comfort, energy savings, ecology and history of the trees and sustainable harvesting
Texas is already the U.S. leader in wind power, and that lead is about to get even bigger.
Steve Maxwell, Canada’s Handiest Man, provides tips on splitting firewood for home heating via woodstoves or fireplaces.
As part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above strategy to
expand safe and responsible domestic energy production, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced Nov. 7, 2012, a lease for commercial wind energy development 11 nautical miles off the coast of Delaware.
The term "living off the grid" can be used in different ways, but it means something very specific when you start looking at producing electricity from renewable sources.
Traditional Appliances Make a Comeback
The EcoAire is designed to be installed in much the same fashion as a window air conditioner and just as easily.
B&R Automation announces partnership to serve renewable energy industry in US and Canada.
Elmira Stove Works offers distinctive, superior quality appliances with its innovative line of Fireview cookstoves.
Tips for saving energy at home while trying to stay cool.
A lesson learned in not counting your chickens before they're hatched
Tips on how to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.
This posting discusses how the oceans stores heat and transports the heat to warm colder parts of the planet. The posting uses El Nino as an example on how warm ocean water can have a diverse effect on the climate in different regions of the planet.
Tips to help wildlife beat the heat with fresh water.
This posting will discuss the relationship of weather and climate and how global warming affects this relationship to trigger climate change
Learn how to sharpen your chainsaw properly with a file and guide
Find out whether a wood pellet stove is right for you, and discover the best stove to buy.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS Associate Editor Thaddeus Christian discusses the best firewood for your wood-burning furnace so you can enjoy wood heat all winter.
Taking a bath in the winter takes a little more planning at our off-grid, no-plumbing home.
Make your home more energy efficient with Indow Windows Shade Grade.
Cam describes why his method of harvesting firewood from his woodlot is the most sustainable way.
Geothermal heating and cooling systems rely on the earth’s constant underground temperature of 45 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit to provide comfortable indoor climates. The technology works in any size or style home, in nearly any setting on earth.
Henry Red Cloud moved back to the Pine Ridge Reservation 12 years ago and started looking into renewable energy. Since then he has started a solar heating system company and a renewable energy training center to serve the Native American community.
Cam readily admits to being obsessed about his use of energy.
Having a “green home” means lots of different things. What does it mean to you?
Let's dream a little dream of green home improvement, without worries about funding.
The basics of using a woodstove to heat your home.
Here at Deer Isle Hostel, Maine, we use a compost pile built with local, natural materials and a 100-foot water pipe to create a steaming hot shower.
The best way to start a fire in your woodstove.
Keep your greenhouse above freezing during short cold periods without paying for a heater.
Talking about carrying in the red roofing tin the old fashioned way due to a broken golf cart and some very muddy conditions. The refrigerator root cellar continues to prove itself as an experiment that seems to be working so far.
Welcome to by blog “City to Country, One Step at a Time.” Here’s how I ended up as a modern homesteader on a little acreage in the Canadian West Coast bush.
If you are growing vegetables, making a few homemade wares here and there ... you are practicing good, old-fashioned homesteading techniques.
If we want more electricity from renewable sources, we need to think about upgrades to our electric grid.
Consumers are intrigued by smart grid technology, but they need a lot more information and better tools before they'll participate.
During the exceptional heat & drought in Texas this summer BeeWeaver worked hard to just keep hives alive... no honey, no divides.
When one of her goats starts looking for love for the first time, and hollering her little head off, Angela has to do some quick thinking to keep her precious pets from becoming that night's dinner!
We're lucky to be able to live the way we do, even when we feel like we're melting
Describes a method of protecting tomatoes from excessive heat using a sunscreen, vermicompost tea, pulling blighted leaves.
We discuss the role of ocean currents in preventing a runaway thermal imbalance on our planet. We also discuss the impact on the climate when the ocean currents are shut down or reverse course.
A three-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
Michael Morley is posting regular updates about his progress building a unique green home with structural insulated panels (SIPs). Here he talks about HVAC work and installing windows.
A 3-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
When you get home, go to your hot water heater, remove the cover and turn it down to 120 degrees (sometimes labeled “hot” as opposed to “very hot”).
Steve explains how one practical guy invented a way to burn pellets efficiently without an expensive pellet stove
Simran Sethi explains her bathroom-remodel goals to conserve water.
For many homesteaders, taking a job during the winter months to earn extra income is an appealing option. Here are some options to consider if you're looking for off-farm income.
There's lots of good information on renewable energy in this new NPR series on electricity in America.
We have the technology, today, to make our power grid more sustainable, cleaner, more robust and more reliable just by replacing old-fashioned metering with “smart-metering” and agreeing to pay homeowners who generate electricity.
The beauty and refreshment of our swimming hole are a swell compliment to work and sun of our homestead.
Only 43 percent of Americans know what smart grid technology is, and of those, 70 percent don’t really understand how it works, according to a survey released today.
Wood is our source of heat for the winter, as are sweaters and hats!
After the kidding is over, we take good care of our girls! And, the babies need to be bottle fed, so here are the instructions on how we feed our kids.
Experts say that that bathroom and kitchen remodels--once a sure-fire way to move a home for sale--aren't necessarily the ticket anymore. Creating a house that feels homey and welcoming is most important.
To freshen up your home without a major remodel, clean up and invest in lower-cost fixes such as paint, hardware and window coverings.
We use more water than we need in our homes every day. If you’re curious to know how much water your own home might be wasting, check out this infographic on U.S. residential water consumption from eLocal.com.
A year-long study in Oklahoma found that consumers who used energy-tracking technology and pricing plans that let them analyze their usage can cut their consumption in half.
At the gardens of Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, we're preparing to plant sweet potato slips, hardening off transplants, and enjoying an abundance of spring cabbage. Learn tips and tricks for getting your transplants ready for the great outdoors.
It's easy to find out what fuels your power comes from using this nifty tool from the EPA.
A stack of cast-iron pans and a chainsaw helmet sum up why these homesteaders do what they do.
Scott Davis’ “Solar Projects, Big and Small” video offers inspiration for both solar energy enthusiasts and folks who are just curious. Tips and advice pertaining to solar energy can be found at the Yahoo! group Simply Solar, and you can make your dream project a reality with Gary Reysa’s instructions.
Simran Sethi writes about choosing eco-friendly paints, tiles, and other aspects of her renovated bathroom.
Outdoor kitchens, dining areas and living rooms are a great way to expand your home's living space. Designers offer advice on how to make the most of the great outdoors--in your own backyard.
Finally! Design experts and contractors say granite and marble have lost their luster. Find beautiful, natural alternatives to that and solutions to other common design mistakes, including dull color pallettes and overused water features.