We'll help guide you through the planning exercise!
Small wind is great if: 1) You have at least 1/2 acre of property with good wind; 2) Your local zoning allows a wind turbine to be installed; 3) You have consulted with your neighbours, and; 4) You want clean renewable energy "behind your meter" or some independence from the grid. A renewable energy system can be expensive to buy, but you can start small and upgrade your equipment at a later date. You should be aware that installation of a small wind turbine can require considerable planning from a technical, financial, legal, social, and environmental perspective. This planning section will lead you through all of these steps.
If you're already familiar with the basics of small wind and are considering your own turbine, this section is for you! Please proceed by following the stages below, in order:
- Determining the Ballpark Cost - Is small wind affordable for you?
To start, find out the rough cost of a small wind turbine to satisfy your needs, based on estimated wind and electricity rates in your area. If the ballpark cost is affordable, you'll continue with steps 1-10.
- Steps 1-3: Determining if a small wind turbine is suitable for you - Are you allowed and able to install a turbine?
Before going through a more detailed feasibility study, you'll need to consider the factors that may prevent you from installing a small wind turbine.
- Steps 4-10: Planning for a small wind turbine installation - What else do you need to consider before buying?
If the ballpark cost is affordable and there’s nothing stopping you from installing a turbine, you'll go through the remainder of the planning process for a small wind turbine, including a more detailed economic feasibility assessment, choosing an exact size of turbine appropriate for you, and shopping for a turbine.
Getting more information - This Planning section is meant for guidance only and should not be relied upon as your only planning for a turbine. If you are interested in detailed information on any of the topics discussed here, please see Links for a variety of detailed planning guides or Contact an Expert.
Buying a small battery-charging turbine? If you’re considering a turbine under 500 watts rated output power, or are looking for something to charge mobile batteries (for a boat or RV), the full planning process may not be necessary, though it may still serve as a useful guideline.
If you’re ready, please start by determining a Ballpark Cost for your system!