Monday, January 31, 2011

A solar we will go!

Today the Baudains' went solar. We had a 2.8 kw system installed on the roof. It looks amazing and is already generating power even though it has been cloudy all day.
This is another big step to making our place a sustainable home in the suburbs.
We have a little room for expansion which we hope to do once we add an alfresco to the backyard.
I am sure that this step will help us become even more aware of our power usage,we already turn off lights and don't do standby but I am sure there are many more ways we can improve our power consumption.
Will let you know how the first power bill goes.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Solar Oven

Inspired by Tricia's pics of her new solar oven I thought I would share mine with you. It was made here in WA about 6 years ago. I am pretty sure the man is no longer making them which is a shame because we love ours. Unlike Tricia's one it is just a black box with large glass panel and doesn't have any wings. I haven't used other solar ovens but I have no complaints about this one. Just a few days ago it got to 120 degrees which is a tremendous heat. It's main body is metal with a wood framed glass top and wool felt lined insulation. It is rather large and heavy but this is not a travel model. We have it set up permanently in the back yard. In winter we bring it under cover to protect the wood.
The temperature of your oven will only get to a certain heat depending on where in the world you live.Where I used to live the max temp I could get was 110 degrees. Even though these temperatures may seem low compared to a conventional oven it is more then sufficient to cook food and the plus is that you can never burn anything no matter how long it stays in.
We have cooked everything from snags to bread and even a few Christmas turkeys. Bread and baked good do take a lot longer to cook in the solar oven but as long as you plan ahead and set them up for say afternoon tea you will be fine.
Solar ovens come in a range of sizes, shapes and designs, what does yours look like?