Electronics > Power/Renewable Energy/EV's

Anyone have a wind turbine in a residential area, how well does it work?

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Red Squirrel:
I've been toying with the idea of getting a prebuilt or building a wind turbine, something in the 1-2kw range.  I live in a somewhat dense neighborhood so there are trees and other obstructions and possibly bylaws on how tall something can be.  I see people with radio towers so I think the laws are probably reasonable and I could probably do like 50-100feet which would get me over the roof tops but not all the trees.   Obviously these are all details I'd have to find out.   

Just wondering if anyone has experimented with wind turbines in such environment, and how well did it work?  We don't get a lot of wind here, but we do get some.  We probably get more wind than we get sun.  I'm in Northern Ontario if curious.   There's a small turbine (2kw or so I believe) at the recreation lake here and I see it spinning most of the time even in relatively low winds.   My goal is to eventually go solar and wind, as both combined could potentially be enough to go off grid or at least put a decent dent in the hydro bill.   I imagine the rating of a turbine is also if it's practically a hurricane, so I'd expect to get maybe half or less of it's actual rating.   Also, is VAWT better for a potentially turbulent residential environment or is horizontal still better? 

I can't think of anything else other that repeated shooting or scrambling bike to quickly get you offside with your neighbors.
In a rural setting maybe although one that was 1 km away from me powering a electric stock fence could easily be heard for a few km howling in strong winds.
Local bylaws may prevent wind turbine installation on account of noise whereas antennae make little unless wind is high and their noise is mostly less than the wind noise anyway.
Best advice would be to get noise specs of any turbine you wish to use, pics too and installation proposal details and spend some time at your local authority to check you'll be complying with their bylaws.

Those things are death traps.  I'm on a RE site and I've seen many that have lost blades.

How much dirt do you own?  A 100' self supporting tower capable of holding a 2kw turbine would probably cost $30k.  Do you have the room for a guyed tower?

Red Squirrel:
I don't know the exact dimensions but I don't think I'd have room for guyed tower and it would probably end up just as expensive given the need for strong concrete footings for each cable, as opposed to just one bigger footing.  I'd probably go with a tubular one, basically like the giant ones you see in big cities, except smaller.  I was looking at them real quick and some can be had for about 20k.  If I was to go for building something custom I'd probably look at using something similar to what they'd use for a large parking lot lamp post.  No idea where a civilian would buy something like that though.  I'm just kind of considerating this project, did not get into details yet. May not happen.   I imagine a few grand for the cement footing.  I'd also need the tower to be designed in a way that I can climb it, as I'd need to do maintenance on the turbine. Greasing bearings etc.

Also what kind of noise do they actually produce?  I always figured they'd be pretty quiet as it's moving relatively slow.  I guess the gear box would make some noise as it speeds up for the alternator?

I don't have nowhere near the money saved up for such a project so mostly just something I'd like to do in the far future.  I'd probably go solar first, or do both at same time as part of a bigger project.   Hydro prices are increasing at an alarming rate, so I need to figure something out.  I could even put it on credit.  I'd have to do the math and figure out what's best.  I just know that at some point I won't be able to actually afford to pay for electricity anymore.  It may take 10-15 years but that point will eventually hit.


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