Twilight beauty of the grid
You may buy your electricity from Duke Energy, National Grid Plc, Florida Power and Light, Consolidated Edison or any of several other power companies that distribute electricity via high tension cables, that is, via a power grid. Before going off grid, I bought my electricity from PNM, founded in 1917 as the Albuquerque Gas and Electric Co.
Buyers of grid power belong to a huge group, and when something overloads or goes wrong with a grid, a huge group has lights go dark, refrigerators get warm, heating/cooling systems cease working.
Or, buyers of grid power can hit an economic bump in the road and be tossed out of their respective grid group. That’s what happened to me. I didn’t take my home off grid. Instead, I was tossed off the grid, with PNM expecting me to pay dearly to get back on.
If PNM had let me pay them immediately, I would have groveled my way back on the grid, but because my phone stopped working when my electricity was shut off, I couldn’t get to grips with real groveling. By the time I had phone service and Easter weekend had passed, so had my inclination to grovel and submit to grid power. The beauty of the grid had begun to dim. They Shut Off my Heat and Lights with No Warning. Read more.
My first attempt at solar was two, small, portable panels to power my computer. In theory they were great, in reality they gave me about 45 minutes online.
Anker 21W Dual USB Solar Charger, PowerPort Solar for iPhone / iPad Pro / and More
Portable panels today are vastly better. For instance, for a quarter of what I paid ten years ago, I can get a light weight set up from Anker with fast charging technology and two ports so I can charge two devices simultaneously.
In any case, after I’d had a taste of the freedom of solar power, I wanted more. I began investigating solar kits. A couple months later I enjoyed the dawn of my life with solar power – off grid, at that! Here’s how my solar looked going in ~~