Home power stations

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chaggle
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Home power stations

Post by chaggle » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:29 pm

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... ances.html
A new boiler could slash energy bills for families by turning their homes into mini power stations.
The gas boiler – designed by a British firm – provides heating and hot water, while also fuelling an electricity generator to power household appliances.
Flow claims households could eventually save £500 a year through a combination of lower electricity bills and selling excess energy.
Adding this extra stage in the process does use slightly more gas. But Flow estimates the cost of this to be no more than £50 a year, which it says is easily cancelled out by the savings on electricity bills.
So what do we think? Possible to generate £500 worth of electricity with £50 worth of gas?
Don't blame me - I voted remain :con

Matt
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Re: Home power stations

Post by Matt » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:30 pm

Potentially makes sense. Shipping electricity across the country can be quite wasteful and this may takes advantage of waste heat from when the boiler is running anyway. However the devil, as they say, is in the detail.

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Zep
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Re: Home power stations

Post by Zep » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:31 pm

Been doing this in Australia for many years, but with solar panels. It takes some outlay to buy a commercial setup, but you can also build your own if you are a half-decent electrician.

Usually you evaluate your electrical use and see what is your biggest requirements you can "take off the grid". Lighting is invariably a good first target. You can get very good 12V LED lights these days that usually connect to a transformer off the mains. Instead, you change over to a 12V lighting system based on rechargable batteries (car batteries usually) that can be charged from non-mains sources, e.g. solar panels, excess heat from your boiler (we don't have these in Australia), or even a small wind-powered turbine. So you get free lighting, which cuts a nice chunk out of your electricity bill right there. You still pay for power but definitely less.

Of course, once you start moving up to powering 240V equipment off the grid, that requires an inverter and some serious power generation and storage. Hence the kits rather that DIY. In fact many kits here are advertised as being able to sell surplus power back to the grid for a profit, paying off your home power station sooner. That is seriously attractive in a country with excess sunshine and wind, and high power costs.

Or you can go further and steal some U 235 and build your own nuke...

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chaggle
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Re: Home power stations

Post by chaggle » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:38 pm

zep, this...

Image

...is becoming a common sight in the UK.
Don't blame me - I voted remain :con

Tony Williams
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Re: Home power stations

Post by Tony Williams » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:39 pm

It seems a bit odd that the photo-electric solar panels seem to have completely eclipsed the roof-mounted water-heating panels which used to be what "solar panels" meant.

The water heaters always struck me as a sensible idea; very low tech - any plumber can maintain one - and provides you with the practical benefit of warm water even if the power or gas go off for some reason. In contrast, the photo-electric panels as used in the UK are just a form of financial investment.

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Zep
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Re: Home power stations

Post by Zep » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:40 pm

chaggle wrote:zep, this...
Image
...is becoming a common sight in the UK.
Excellent news! Should be a world-wide standard for every house being built. Although I do wonder if there is enough sunshine of long enough duration at high latitudes such as the UK to make it financially viable year-round. The boiler heat capture idea does seem an very sensible adjunct or alternative.

And...the houses in the pic are in Germany.

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