If you enjoyed this tiny home design you’ll love our free daily tiny house newsletter with even more! Next, PB cut a hole in the screw on lid, he created a gasket using a prescription pill bottle, that keeps the plunger handle straight and keeps any water from splashing out of the hole in the top.Since the bucket is several inches taller now, the handle for the plunger wasna€™t long enough, so PB removed the original handle and replaced it with a longer handle.
I washed the clothes, I removed the clothes, wringing each one by hand, then I dumped out the water. The next thing I want to get is a mop bucket with a roller wringer, thata€™s the cheapest way I can go if I purchase one, perhaps PB will make a roller wringer for me in the mean time, I wouldna€™t be surprised. Now to my homemade laundry soap, this is something I have been using for years, long before I moved off grid. I know a lot of people who use homemade laundry soap like to take it to the next step and make it into a liquid, some people just like using liquids better, they say the powder doesna€™t dissolve well, I have not had that problem, I think ita€™s because I grate the bar soap so fine, thata€™s the part that will give you trouble dissolving, especially in cold water if you dona€™t get it fine enough.
You use 1-3 tablespoons of the mixture per wash load, no more, it will not seem like enough, especially if you are used to using commercial laundry detergent by the cup full, I like to use a coffee scoop, it is just right.
Some of you might say that you remember line dried clothes feeling rough, scratchy, not soft at all.
Today, I used my improvised laundry washing a€?machinea€?, I used the bluing in the rinse, the only problem I have now is I am going to have to use this on the rest of my socks for sure, half of them are going to look whiter and cleaner than the other half. Ita€™s a funny thing, when I explain to my friends out here about my improvised washing machine, they each tell me that I am more than welcome to come over to their house to do laundry using their washing machine and dryer.
Of course I can use a washing machine and dryer, any time I want, but knowing that I CAN do it without electricity or machines, unless you count muscle power. One cautionary note, if you use a gray water system and your gray water pours out on plants you want to keep alive, do not use the borax, it will kill plants. I am now wearing one of the thermal shirts as a sleep shirt, it is soft as can be, it smells clean, not of perfume, but clean. Rocket stove mass heaters have been around for over 30 years, and their growing in popularity.
Most of these materials should be able to be located either for cheap from local scrapyards, recyclers, or hardward stores. Average Outdoorsman is an excellent resource for outdoor activities, educational, and informative goodies. All about living off the grid, sustainable living, homesteading, prepping, survival, solar power, wind power, renewable energy, permaculture, hydroponics, recycling, DIY projects, and natural building. An excellent method of reusing — there are more than 300 million shipping containers sitting empty at ports around the world — shipping containers are used to build full and part-time single-family homes and much more. The Container Guest House is the first of several projects by Poteet Architects we will be featuring. Atelier Workshop’s Port-a-Bach shipping container home might just make standard RVs obsolete.
Taking the portability of shipping container housing to an altogether new level of portability, this 20-foot container has been outfitted with an entire studio apartment, including a kitchen and a full bath with a composting toilet.
The main living space of the light-flooded Adam Kalkin Container House in Califon, NJ is three shipping containers wide by two shipping containers tall with two sides made almost entirely of glass. It is a wall of containers, built against a hill in Wellington, New Zealand, designed and built by Ross Stevens.
Built cheaply ($118,000), quickly (in fewer than 90 days) and primarily with recycled objects (two 40-foot shipping containers and two 20-foot shipping containers and wooden pallets), the two-story Manifesto House designed by architects James & Mau in Curacavi, Chile, proves that quick, inexpensive and green contemporary casas can indeed be good-looking. This project questions the need for excessive space and challenges occupants to be efficient. Gabriela Calvo and Marco Peralta dreamed of living in their fantastic property 20 minutes outside of the city of San Jose, Costa Rica; where they could be with their horses and enjoy the natural landscape.
Byron Galan is a graphic designer from El Salvador who founded Betype a other graphic design related Tumblr blogs gathering more than 400k followers. In this post, I’ll give you an overview of solar water heating basics so you can decide if this green home option is right for you. After heating and cooling, water heating tends to be one of areas where people use the most energy. In our case, our solar collectors preheat water for our domestic hot water and for our in floor radiant heating.
Pool heating is a great application for solar water heating, because pool usage is heaviest when the sun is most abundant.
Indirect systems heat a fluid (generally an antifreeze mix) and transfer heat from that fluid through a heat exchanger to the potable water in the storage tank.
Passive solar water heaters rely on natural convection to move the cold water from the bottom of the collector to the top as it is heated. Flat plate collectors have fluid piping connected in parallel (typically copper tubing) with metal fins painted black to increase the absorption area, all inclosed in an insulated box. Insulated tube collectors are individual tubes with fluid pathways and fins inclosed in what is basically a thermos.
Temperature and Pressure Gauge – Most system with inside storage will have one of these gauges near the storage tank so you can easily see at a glace the current conditions of the system, and make sure that it is properly pressurized. Posts may contain affiliate links, which allow me to earn a commission to support the site at no extra cost to you. A big storage tank can help overcome this situation, but your costs will ramp up significantly with a bigger storage tank. If I had that much money to invest in solar, I’d put it into solar electric over solar thermal, because batteries are a whole lot more compact and easier to work with than thermal storage. In this case as he said (if I understand correct), additional storage, which keeps hot water and doesn’t mix inlet cold water.
Also I have seen a compact type system in China, they took 200 L tank, and inner tank they devided into 3 parts just put walls inside of tank.
Back in the Solar Energy Lab, where I did my graduate work in college, they did some experimenting with baffled tanks to increase stratification, and energy collection improvement were modest at best.
I do have a pressure relief valve on my collectors, but under normal operating conditions it should not be required. I agree that fewer moving parts means less to go wrong, but in our climate the simpler heaters can’t stand up to the cold. With most systems, there’s no way to lower the temperature of water going from the solar storage tank to the standard water heater. My wife and I also have built our own ICF home with floor radiant heat and live in the country. We have thought about eventually adding thermal solar panels on top of a trellis to the south of our home and have that help supplement our winter heat load. The solar system we have now heats water for domestic use and space heating, although it provides only a small portion of the space heating needs.
So all that said, I know this is much less efficient than a direct solar hot exchange system, but this way I’ll be able to keep get hot water even in the dead of winter when nights are 14 hours long and we only get 4 hours of good overhead sun.
Anyway, any answers you (or anyone on here) may have would be great, even if it’s just observations.


I should probably update this and say, doing the math on the element (400 W, 12V DC), I probably need about 700 for the batteries since I forgot to calculate the cycle going only down to 50%, so that would make it about 1700 instead of 1400. So using energy supplied by the wind is not only better for the environment (in many ways) but it is also beneficial to your wallet. The chief executive of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Michael Liebreich says that the view that energy produced by fossil fuels is cheaper than that of renewables. The analysis also showed that it is likely that by 2020, solar PV will be cheaper than the non-renewable alternatives, too, making solar power the way to go. Read more about the South African context in a previous Water Rhapsody post: “Learn To Be Self Sufficient” (relating to ESKOM and energy use in South Africa). He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories.
I handed the plunger to PB and asked him to cut some holes in the plunger, that makes it easier to plunge the clothes without making tons of bubbles and a big mess. I put them in the bucket, filled it with enough water to cover the clothes by a few inches, added some homemade laundry soap (recipe to follow) and began to plunge. Now I can put the whole thing on the floor and plunge from a standing position, I get more power to my stroke now. I added fresh water, a bit of baking soda, that helps freshen and helps soften the clothes too. I can use the roller wringer for my clothes, the water would drain into the bucket, it would take less time to dry on the line, and the clothes would not have to be hand wrung, that makes more wrinkles.
Since I go ahead and take the extra time to use the blade attachment of my food processor, the bar soap is pretty fine and it dissolves just fine for me.
This will not suds up in the water, if you feel like ita€™s not enough, or you have an especially dirty load of wash, then run it through another wash cycle with another 1-2 tablespoons of powder, adding more to the initial wash will not get things any cleaner, in fact, it will defeat the purpose as it may not rinse out well if you add too much. One major reason that happens is because not all of the commercial laundry detergent is being rinsed out of your laundry.
One thing that commercial laundry detergents have are optical brighteners, this makes your colors look brighter and your whites look whiter. In a way, it is not a surprising reaction, they think Ia€™m doing everything the hard way, who in their right mind would want to do laundry by hand when there are perfectly functioning, modern washing machines and dryers available?
Just omit the borax in this case and dona€™t worry about it, your clothes will still come out clean.
In their most basic form, recycled shipping containers offer a quick and inexpensive solution to emergency housing needs and when stacked sky-high, they make for intriguing dormitory complexes.
As a national award-winning firm, Poteet Architects is best known for their sensitive adaptive reuse of existing buildings and a fresh, rigorous approach to modern interior design. A veritable home on-the-go, you can roll into place, fold down one side, make your bed and be right at home. It also has a “non-invasive foundation”, which allows for plenty of flexibility in terms of ground placement.
That’s not the case with the Mobile Dwelling Unit, a proudly single-decker shipping container home that avoids the claustrophobic “long but narrow” syndrome by incorporating pop-out elements that extended from the 40-foot long, 8-foot wide core of the home, accordion-style.
It uses the spaces between the containers and the hill to expand its living space beyond that limiting interior dimensions of a standard ISO box. In addition to being constructed from 85 percent recycled, reused and nonpolluting materials, the bioclimatic and modular design of Manifesto House incorporates alternative energy systems. Two shipping containers saddlebag a taller common space that connects local rock outcroppings to the expansive mountain ridge views. They made the very bold choice of exploring with me the possibility of creating a very inexpensive house made out of disregarded shipping containers that allowed them to be dept free and live the life they always dreamed of. I had planned on purchasing one for a home, but I think I’ve recently decided to use one as a recording studio instead. Estimates range from around 15% to up to 40% of energy usage, with the high end coming from old, inefficient electric heaters. Options range from a black painted tank or a black tank in an insulated box (batch heaters), to flat plate collectors and insulated tube collectors. I have been considering solar water heating for my home for some time now and after reading this I think i’ve made up my mind. Big question in my mind is when day is done and showers for 4 start at about 9 pm, how is a 30 gallon tank going to contain enough hot water so all showers are provided with hot water ??
Geraldc, when hot water inside of tank begins flowing to the bath or some other usage, then tank will be automatically filled with cold water, so, in this case cold will be mixed with hot water and makes to drop the rest hot water temp.
So, heated water by SWH from tank will be automatically flow to storage tank, to fill it again and again. Running it with automatic controls that make it more efficient is good but, if its power becomes unavailable then what do you do? I don’t understand the workings but I thought this was a great from ecology point of view as well as money saver.
If you lower the setpoint of your conventional water heater, it may lower your bill slightly, but with such a minimal water heating load, I’m not surprised that you saw only a minimal difference in your water heating bill. Your pump may be dead, your controller may be dead, there may be a heat exchanger leak (less likely). To cover the majority of the heating load in our climate, the system just would have been too expensive for our budget, and the storage would have needed to be massive. But Bloomberg New Energy Finance published a new analysis which states that electricity produced by a new wind farm is 14% cheaper than that produced by a new coal-fired power plant and a whopping 18% more worth your while financially than a new gas powered plant.
We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too.
Well, maybe not a machine in the traditional sense, unless you consider my hands the motor.
I added some bluing, put the top back on the primitive washing machine and began the rinse cycle. Using a roller wringer, it would smooth out wrinkles instead of causing them, dual benefit. I prefer using a castile soap, you can use Dr Bronnera€™s, or my personal favorite right now, Kirka€™s Castile Soap, of course you can use a bath soap like Ivory, just dona€™t use anything that has moisturizers or major additives, they may work for your skin, but they will not work well to clean clothes. If you want to make this into a liquid, just do a search for homemade laundry soap, youa€™ll find lots of recipes that take the next step of making it into a liquid, I just prefer not to do it myself, it takes up much less space this way too. Take a peek at the rinse cycle about halfway through, you will probably be shocked and disgusted at how dirty and sudsy the water looks, this is being dried into your laundry, chances are you will probably want to do a second rinse cycle after that.
I say they do it to combat the dulling residue that is left behind from the detergent itself. Well, perhaps I am a bit nutty, living off grid, heating with wood, hauling my own water, generating my own electricitya€¦ it seems natural to me to want to wash my clothes by hand and dry the clothes using a solar dryer, a clothesline. I love the feel of the material against my skin, knowing there is nothing that is going to irritate my skin, not that I am particularly sensitive to things like that, ita€™s nice to know that I dona€™t have be concerned about it. This project originated from Poteet Architects’s client’s wish to experiment with shipping containers.


If and when the home is in transit, the elements — kitchen, bathroom, reading nook, bed, desk, sofa and storage space — fold back into their slots. We think it looks like the perfect spot to kick back, relax and have a couple of cervezas all the while keeping our eco-footprints at a bare minimum. The containers house sleeping and work functions while the center space provides entry, dining, living and a loft above.
It was important for me to provide them with the sunrise, the sunset, the spectacular views, and overall try and create a feeling of comfort and home.
After graduation, I worked for a company that operated the world’s largest flat plate collector solar water heating (SWH) system and did SWH installations.
Friends of ours camped out on their property while building their home, and set up an outdoor shower with 50 gallon barrels painted black on a platform above their shower area. These systems work best in warm weather areas, because they must be drained when temperatures get below freezing. If we were to expand our system, I’d want these collectors, since they have the lowest amount of heat loss in cold climates.
During my trip to China I have seen a lot of SWH s on the roofs.Then I bought 4 (2 split and 2 compact 200L pressure type). I live alone, except when my kids and grandkids visit, and haven’t seen that much of a savings dollar wise. If you understand how your system operates, you can go through it part by part and see if each element is working.
He took it downstairs for a few minutes, then brought it back to me, he handed me the plunger with 3, perfectly round, quarter sized holes. But of course, PB is never happy with prototypes, he wants to improve things, so he decided that a lid was in order, the lid would keep the water from splashing about as I plunged the clothes.
You take the bar soap, grate it in a food processor, or you can do it by hand, you want to get it grated as fine as possible, I like to run the blade attachment on the soap after I grate it, just to make it finer, it dissolves better that way. Ita€™s amazing at how much dirt and detergent is left behind on your laundry, this is the main reason why if you line dried this laundry, it would come out stiff as cardboard and scratchy as well. Since the homemade laundry soap does not have these optical brighteners, eventually you will notice your colors and whites are not as bright as they used to be, so if you go back to what your grandmother used, Mrs Stewarta€™s bluing, you will not have that problem. Even if you dona€™t use the primitive method of washing, you can still use the homemade laundry soap, it will save you money, it will get your clothes cleaner (IMHO), and you will feel better about the whole thing. It is possible to develop sensitivities by being exposed to chemicals over a period of time. Let me know about it, leave a comment, especially if you try any part of this, let me know what you think.
The loft deck invites easy camping as the platform bed rolls between interior and exterior. When we built our current home, we added a solar water system shortly after the home was completed. Another variant of this is the solar camp shower bags that can be filled and hung in a sunny location to provide hot water while camping (or during an emergency situation).
Because, every time when relief valve drops outside some pressure and some super hot antifreez, to cool up system, then u will loose antifreez.
The owner of this website disclaims all warranties expressed or implied regarding the accuracy, timeliness, and completeness of the information provided. The other day while I was in town, I saw a toilet plunger on the shelf and put it in my cart.
I removed each piece of clothing, wringing each one, then I hung them on the clothes line to dry. Once you have the bar soap in powder form, measure it, you can just eyeball it if you want, it doesna€™t have to be exact. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how much cleaner your clothes will be, smell and feel, no matter how you dry them. Well, ita€™s easy, to do laundry with a washing machine and dryer means I have to gather all the laundry, sort it and carry it down the hill to my neighbora€™s house, ita€™s a big hill.
I know there will be someone out there with a dozen kids, several toddlers and at least one in diapers who will say they arena€™t interested in all the extra work, and to them I say, my heart goes out to you, and more power to you, thank God for modern conveniences like washing machines and dryers. And yes, I know that everything I listed above is a chemical, the difference is I know what these chemicals are, I can pronounce the names, they have been in use for generations. The Studio H:T project is planned to be off-the-grid using solar orientation, passive cooling, green roofs, pellet stove heating and photovoltaics to create electricity. So, the first part, where inlet of cold water, SC tors will heat the water, and heated water will rise and enter second part, then to third.
I really like that you explained that you can’t take shortcuts when you’re installing a system like this. By the way, you may want to keep the charge controller outside with the batteries because some charge controllers make a humming noise constantly which can be a little nerve wracking. I also picked up 3 bottles of Mrs Stewarta€™s bluing, Ia€™ll explain more about that in a bit. PB found another 5 gallon bucket, it had a bad place in the bottom, but it had a screw on lid.
Your clothes will be cleaner, fresher and will rinse cleaner using this homemade laundry soap. I am tied to his house for as long as I am doing laundry, then I have to lug those clothes back up the hill, did I mention ita€™s a big hill? You can still try the homemade laundry soap, it doesna€™t take that long to make and you will save money using it, plus the extra cleanliness factor of using the homemade stuff verses the commercial stuff. It totally makes sense that if you don’t install it correctly, the system either won’t work right from the start or will have a very short lifespan. And remember that the shorter the wires between panel, charge controller, and battery, the less power is wasted, and the longer your battery will stay charged. Do not wire money in any way without first seeing the home (or other product), checking title, and doing your proper due diligence.
You also might want to put aside a bucket or two, and a clean (unused) toilet plunger, just in case, you just never know when it may come in handy. So, in this case cold water inlet will not influence tothe whole water volume inside of tank, just to first part of the water. If I am doing laundry at the skycastle, then I can do them as I please, without having to lug anything up or down the hill, I can do the laundry as I go, I dona€™t feel like I have to have a full load, I can do smaller loads with no guilt. So, first circulation goes beetween SC and bottom HE, second sirculation goes beetween heating radiators (fan coils, same radiators with fans, to blow hot air in the room, to get faster effect of heating space).
Put everything in a container with a lid and mix it well, you might have to break up any lumps in the borax and washing soda.



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