The following article was written by one of our technicians, David Scally Jr. David is extremely experienced with solar technology.
When I’m on service calls in the field, I get this question at least once a week:
“I wanna go off-grid and kick these utility folks where it counts, can you help me?”
My answer is always this: “Yes, I can help you, but here’s the deal.”
I can set you up with a wonderfully economic solar PV power system and you can date or have a casual acquaintance with your system. You don’t even have to read your owner’s manuals (since most owners don’t anyway). But, if I get you “off-grid” so to speak, rest assured…we’re gonna have a full wedding, and there will be a ceremony and exam to kick it all off. You WILL be required to pass this exam. Then, for the rest of your chosen “off-grid” days/years/decades…you WILL have a committed relationship/marriage to your battery backed-up “off-grid” wonder. Ready for that?
…so far? Absolutely -0- “off-grid” installations ordered.
Please note, I’m not saying I’m proud that I’ve discouraged anyone from a microgrid or self-contained power source. I AM proud that – if the goal is to just “get back at the utilities” with no sense of what that means or requires, then I have done my job as PV consultant in such scenarios. I want people to be happy that they chose solar, not loathe or even regret it later. To me, true “off-grid” is for mountainous, rural or new home development customers who are ready for the relationship and learning required to be off-grid.