Sunday, November 17, 2013

Solar-Power Envy

We're in Blowing Rock this weekend at our little A-Frame on the Middle Fork of the New River, and being a lazy Sunday morning I visited a favorite site: Tiny House Talk.  I saw this image of an A-Frame with a tiny PV panel that caught my attention:

I've been trying to figure out how we might make our A-Frame more energy-efficient, and would love to add a PV system, but given the house faces southwest and the pitch of the roof -- I've almost given up on the idea until I saw this application.  Now,  I will have to confer with my brother who runs a PV installation company in Check, VA, to pick his brain about the capacity of a panel system like the one above.  Since we have propane gas logs in the living room, which pretty much heats the entire main level without the need to use the AIR-CON unit, I only need enough power for everything else.  The only caveat I would add is that I'm finding the best heat source for the lower level is a space heater and one small wall heater.  Although there is an AIR-CON unit designated for each floor, I found last winter that enjoyment of the lower & main levels were impacted by the rumbling intermittent noise of operation.  [Useful for providing heat, just noisier than is ideal.]  Plus, I think they used just as much if not more power as the space heater.  So, that said, it would be great if a PV panel could provide enough energy to run a space heater on the lower level, some lights, refrigerator, hot water heater, and stove.   

So, I'll need to consult the expert in the family on what exactly a panel like this (above) could honestly be providing that particular house.  I'm not entirely sure where we could install it on the front of our A-Frame without impeding some of the light, but I'm definitely open to exploring this further and making the sacrifice in the name of energy-efficiency...


  1. I would love to see pictures of the inside of this little Aframe. What is the size of this one?

  2. You might also check out Backwoods Solar for their advice. They've been a tremendous help to us!