Do you think that using solar power for home is a great idea? Well, only you can answer that question. Before you embark on any project, you must have enough knowledge about it. Make sure that you do your homework first and learn everything you can about solar power. The world is suffering greatly from global warming and one of the primary causes is the use of fossil fuels to create electricity. Electricity is a necessity and because of this fact, people can’t do away with it. There is a need to look for alternative energy sources and a very good one is the use of solar power.
Before you make a decision and use solar power for your home, here are the important considerations that you should look into:
1. Where do you live? What is the weather in your area? Is it always sunny in your area or is it always raining? Are there tall trees near your house? You must answer these questions first before you start with any DIY project to create solar power for your home. If the weather is frequently sunny, then it might be a good idea to use solar power. For those with lots of trees in their yard, you need to get rid of them but this is not a very easy thing to do since trees are also very important. Local authorities might not permit you to do cut down huge tall trees. Study the weather in your area as well as your location. To use solar power, you will need the rays of the sun. Rain, clouds, and trees can block the sun’s rays and so you might end up wasting money.
2. Where do you plan to install the solar panels? You must determine the place where there is lots of sunlight all throughout the day. You can’t install the solar panels in an area where there is very little sunlight. Study your home’s surroundings. Find the perfect place where the panels can get a lot of sunlight so that you can benefit from it greatly.
3. Do you have enough knowledge on how to connect solar power into the electricity grid of your home? You can also conduct a research about it. The solar power DIY projects usually provide a complete guide on how to install the solar power to your homes. Just follow the instructions carefully to avoid committing mistakes. If you’re not that sure, you can always get an electrician to help you with the task.
Solar power can reduce your monthly electric bills by more or less 80% depending on your solar power project. In no time at all, your home can become self sufficient and you will no longer depend largely on the conventional energy sources.
Aside from that, the carbon emissions are also reduced thereby saving the environment from further damage. With a solar powered home, you can enjoy an endless electric supply that is clean, green, and fresh.
Get a solar power DIY kit now and get the needed materials. You can also ask other family members to help you out. That is, if you think that solar power is best for your home. Go through the three considerations mentioned above so that you can make an informed decision. This is the time to save money and help the environment, act now.
Many homesteading prepper families make the decisions to invest in a dairy cow for their property. This will provide plenty of milk for your family – and possibly extra for your pigs, if you’re raising those.
You can drink the milk, or create yogurt, ice cream and other items from her milk. Each type of cow and size will produce a variable amount of milk, so you may want to find a smaller option (like a goat) if your family doesn’t use much milk.
Or, if you live in a prepper community, you could share the milk with another family – along with the responsibilities of raising it. You need to milk it at the same time each and every day, so scheduling is important.
Some people wonder about the safety of drinking raw milk, but you can also buy a pasteurizer for your family to use. They’re not expensive and it will provide you with the same safety that you get off the grocery shelves.
It can get expensive to raise a dairy cow if you’re having to buy all of your hay, but many prepper families grow their own, so that cuts down on the cost of raising your dairy cow enormously.
You can sometimes go to a dairy farm and ask if they have any lower production cows they want to get rid of. If the volume isn’t enough for a dairy farm, they’ll often sell off the cows to a family that requires a much lower volume of milk.
Most families recommend that you get a Jersey dairy cow, but there are many options. You want one that’s gentle and won’t be hostile to you or your little ones in a farming situation.
You have to make sure that your property has room for her to graze and roam around. If you get a Brown Swiss or Dexter cow, then you can allow for more grass grazing than hay feed, which saves you money in the long run.
Your dairy cow will provide milk twice a day for almost a year. After about 10 months, give her a break for a few months and then let her produce another calf to begin milk production again.
Keep in mind that your water supply has to be significant to provide for a dairy cow’s needs. They can drink anywhere from 25-40 gallons of water each day. Make sure you have enough water for her and your own family’s needs.
Your dairy cow might produce anywhere from 2-8 gallons of milk per day, so make sure you don’t over-invest in something that’s going to make all of the milk production go to waste.
You never know when you’re going to have to get out in a hurry. Having a bag packed with all of the necessities you need – including clothing – will allow you to be prepared for any situation.
You already know that you should have the basic items like food, water and first aid. When it comes to clothing, it can be a little confusing knowing exactly what or how much to pack.
A good rule of thumb to follow would be to pack as if you’re going to be gone for three days. You’ll also want to consider exactly where you’re going when choosing what clothing to pack because the area you’re going to may have different weather than where you’re currently living.
If you’re heading to a rainier area, then you’d want to make sure you had rain gear – and if you’re going to an area where the weather is colder, you’ll want warmer clothing. Since room can be limited in a backpack, you want every piece of clothing to serve a purpose.
Pack two pairs of pants to wear. Since you’ll be wearing a pair, that counts as your third day pair. You’ll want to take long pants rather than shorts since you might be hiking through rough terrain. Plus, having long pants can help protect your legs against insect bites.
Take two shirts along for the journey. You’ll need one that’s fit for warmer weather – such as a short sleeve t-shirt. But you’ll also want a long sleeve shirt for cooler temperatures. Remember that temperatures always drop in the evening hours. By having both a short sleeve and a long sleeve shirt, you can double these up for warmth if needed.
For undergarments, you’ll need to take two pairs of socks and two pairs of underwear – but you’ll also want to pack a pair of thermal underwear. You can wear these under your clothing in the event of cold weather.
You’ll want to take along a hat to protect your head from the sun’s rays as well as to keep your head warm if it’s cold. A hat can also be useful to keep the rain out of your eyes.
A jacket is a must-have clothing item, but you want one that can serve two purposes. You want one that help you keep you warm but can also protect you from inclement weather like rain.
Many jackets have a waterproof shell and are lined with warm material on the inside. You can find some that are lightweight so that fitting them in your backpack won’t be an issue.
Don’t forget to pack footwear. When you first start out, it’s best to wear your waterproof boots and pack a pair of athletic shoes. Break them in ahead of time to prevent blisters if you have to hike around a lot.
Most of us already agree that a permanent bug out location is better than Bugging out when the SHTF – the trouble is many of us need to be close to the city or towns for our jobs. You know that thing we do all week long to make money to pay for our homes, kids, food, and other essentials. By moving far way from the cities we would have no way to support our loved ones OR we would be faced with 3 hr commutes each way to work which is just not realistic.
So the key is to have your homestead or BOL and have some sort of home business to bring in money to pay for everything. I have come up with a list of 20 ideas of ways in which you can be removed from society and still be earning money. Please feel free to add your own ideas in the comments section. Many thanks for reading.
1. A butcher shop. These days the average person buys their meat in shrink wrap from the supermarket. In the old days most families knew how to humanely butcher and animal and use its body parts for food. A person who raises their won animals and knows how to correctly butcher them will do well at farmers markets and even better after a societal collapse.
2. A cheese-maker . Another skill that has been lost since the early 1900s – in ye olden times most villages had someone who was well versed in cheese making, whether cow cheese or goats cheese this is another job with a little bit of training you could make a good living and still live on your homestead.
3. Woodworking shop. Most manufacturing these days seems to have gone to china and the average persons idea of building a bookcase is assembling a kit from Ikea. In our grandparents time they would save up to by a book case of a chest of drawers and it would last a life time. Anyone who is handy with carpentry will do well pre and post collapse of society.
4. A yogurt shop or a milk shop. Much like being a cheese maker above, healthy cow’s milk or goats milk could be a trade to support the family. There is a great demand these days for natural milks not pumped full of harmful hormones and additives and someone who takes the time to learn the skills to make great tasting natural milk or yogurt would soon get lots of repeat business.
5. A Barber shop. Anyone who can give good haircuts, is handy with a pair of hair clippers or can do a mean straight razor shave will do well in this times or in the Post Apocalyptic world.
6. A Tailor’s. Much like cheap modern day furniture that people dispose of when they move house, many people today choose cheap clothes that they will through out after wearing a couple of times. When I grew up my mother would darn the holes in our socks and sew patches on the knees of our jeans when we got holes in them. A person handy with a needle and thread, a sewing machine or can cut a pattern to make new clothes will do very well for themselves
7. Autoshop or small engine repair shop. Aircraft carriers and long range submarines have small machine shops on them to create and repair broken parts when they eventually wear out. When you are under water for 6 months at a time you cannot just pop over to your local auto parts shop and pick up a new piece for whatever has broken. Being handy with auto repairs or small engine repairs will be a godsend in a world where no new cars will ever be made again.
8. Produce shop. Any one with a green thumb could do well with this one. Even when I lived in NYC I saw stalls at the bi-weekly Farmers market where farmers from upstate NY would make the trek down to sell their produce. Depending on where you live that could be apples, carrots, potatoes, cauliflower to grapes avocados and oranges. Know your soil and know your regions climate and go to town!
9. Stationary shop. Papers and pens, gift wrap and ribbons, cards and notes all of these may be hard to find if you are living way out of town. Post collapse people may be well stocked with Meals ready to Eat and Ammo but I can personally guarantee you that most will not have a stock pile of birthday and Christmas cards at hand. Remember one of the early episodes of The Walking Dead where it was Andrea’s sisters birthday and she asked Dale to find her some wrapping paper?
10. An ice-cream shop or parlor. There are so many varieties of ice cream these days compared to when I was growing up it makes my head spin. Kids of all ages love a cone or bowl of ice cream especially at the end of a hot day. The founders of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream completed a home correspondence course from Pennsylvania State University to get their start. They set up their first shop in renovated gas station and took over an old mill to create their first packing plant.perhaps you could follow in their footsteps too.
11. Home defense shop. Not everyone is cut out to repair cars or grow veggies, if you are defense minded you can apply your skills in helping others homesteads to become secure, especially against a marauding gang of Zombie Biker Mutants or whoever is roaming the wasteland after the fall.
12. A hardware store. Much like a machine shop (mentioned above) not everyone is going to think to stock up on nuts and bolts before the collapse of civilization as we know it.Keep in mind too that these days the average hardware store isn’t just about an inventory of tools and materials. Skills like laying tiles and installing an electrical switch box are also appreciated so perhaps you and another family member could join forces and use your strengths to create a well rounded hardware store with extra services.
13. A candy store. Even in the big cities boutique candy stores are a huge hit. Learn to make old fashioned candy’s (even in the wild west times candy stores were a big hit with the kids) and you will be laughing.
14. A chocolate shop. Much like a candy store everyone loves chocolate. In a post apocalyptic world there will be no Hersey or Cadbury’s. Even in today’s world there are many small independent specialized chocolate companies springing up and giving the multi national conglomerates a run for their money. perhaps you can too.
15. Computer repair shop. I had a good friend who worked for a local Apple computer repair shop. He said most repairs were very very simple and people had no clue how easy they were to fix and paid him a good wage for his know how. Just think in a future where no new computers are being made those with the skills to keep existing ones run for years on end will be in high demand.
16. A bakery shop (breads). People love fresh bread, and its something that doesn’t take major skills and techniques to be half way good at baking it. If you are handy in the kitchen a fresh bread shop might be the way for you to go.
17. A donut shop. A little more complicated then baking bread but specialized baking like lovely tasty delicious donuts would probably make you live like a king or queen in a post apocalyptic world.
18. A sandwich shop (like a small subway). If you are good at baking bread and growing your own veggies (perhaps your neighbors started a cheese making business and you can trade with them) then why not start a fresh sandwich shop?
19. A deli shop. By a deli shop I mean things like pickled vegetables and smoked meats not like a New york style bodega. If you get good at pickling and canning your own veggies, heck you could even sell them by the jar!.
20. Feed shop (grains for animals and livestock). Another over looked skill set to think about for the future. As important and goats cows and horses are for the farming community someone has to feed them and with the right foods too. This could be a nice niche to focus on.
I get asked fairly often if I have any advice for us preppers that like to store ammo. There are no real “magic ways” to store ammo but in this blog posts I will give you the best bits of advice that I have accumulated over the years.
As long as you keep ammo in a dry place it will be fine. Cool and dry is best but dry is the main thing.
I have some .30-30 ammo that is at least 20 years old which i just fired some last week and it was fine. I started using an old gun safe to store my ammo in and now I have two large gun safes full of ammo. Keep an eye out at flea markets and see if you can get one for cheap.
Make sure you test stored ammo on a regular basis. Rim fire ammo isn’t as reliable or as long lasting as Center fire..so sometimes you just have to use it up and be done with it.
When testing ammo that has been stored for any length of time “listen” for squibs. if one round doesn’t fire completely, you don’t want to be running another until you clear your barrel..if you don’t have the know how take it to a reputable gunsmith to clear for you.
I often get readers writing to me and asking what are some safe, effective realistic ways to store large amounts of gasoline for when the crap hits the fan. So on this blog post I figured I would put down some ideas that might help you.
Before we get into it – keep this in mind. Storing gasoline is hazardous and will only last a year at best.
The best way of storing gasoline on your homestead or Bug Out Location is in 55 gallon drums. Keep in mind 55 gallon drums are very heavy when filled so you will need a pump to get the gas into your vehicle. I got a hand cranked pump from my local hardware for a little under $150.
Using a fuel stabilizer will help keep your gas good – perhaps adding an extra year to the life of it. So now we are talking 2 years tops. With all that said i think , as with most preps you need to rotate your fuel close to expiry date, use that fuel up and refill the drums.
Keeping stored fuel with a stabilizer (I recommend the Sta-bil brand) out of the sun and preferably some where with cooler temperatures will help extend the shelf life of it as well.
As I mentioned above storing fuel in 55 gallon drums with a hand pump is smart but if you have to get on the move you will have real problems trying to move a couple of filled tanks. Best bet is to invest in a couple of jerry cans to move smaller amounts of fuel about. I picked up 2 20 liter jerry cans for $35 each.
You may want to consider buying a diesel truck or SUV as an alternative since diesel fuel lasts up to 5 years and with a stabilizer even longer. Please note that diesel fuel sometimes can grow algae in it. They do make an antimicrobial additive for diesel fuel..so be on the look out for purchasing some of that as well if you do choose to go the diesel route.
If you are really concerned about a massive long term grid down situation you may want to consider converting one of your vehicles to use a propane engine. As far as I understand propane doe not go bad at all and last indefinitely.
A couple of final words on storing fuel ..in the advent of a long term situation the majority of cars will eventual rust out or fall to pieces..if you really want to have all your bases covered you may think about investing in a couple of horses as well.
If you have been a prepper for any length of time now you have considered purchasing a gas mask as part of your preps. I think owning gasmasks for you and your family is a wise investment. There are plenty of low price surplus masks on the market today – however as we all know cheaper does not equal better and scrimping on something as important as a gas mask is a false economy.
Before we delve into the meat of this article keep in mind that many modern chemical warfare agents can enter the body via the pores in your skin, meaning that if you are worried about bio warfare then a full NBC suit will be more your suited to your needs. However with all that said a gas mask is still a worthwhile purchase for most of us, as it can be used to prevent smoke inhalation, tear gas, mustard gas etc.
Conventional wisdom is that masks should last 5-8 hours of constant use. They are rated to be usable for up to 2 years, after you open the mask but the 5-8 hour caveat still applies. In general it’s particles clogging the filter media which will lead you to replace the filter when the effort to draw air in gets too difficult.
There are charts of filter life duration based on what the filter is exposed to. They don’t all agree with each other but a good rule of thumb is if the filter is exposed to an infectious agent it must be changed within a day, if wet or exposed to blood change it immediately. Otherwise replace the filters as needed. I purchased a couple dozen replacement filters when I ordered mine.
Israel is one of the only countries to hand out millions of mask to their population which means that there are many available which are still well with in their expiration date. Even the ones that aren’t are still effective against all but the nastiest agents.
If you are buying a surplus mask make sure you are buying a brand new mask and the filters are also new and still in their original packaging. Do you really want to trust your life and the life of your family to something that may have been sitting in a crate since before the first gulf war?
The filters are your main concern with age and new ones are available. Ive never tested anything with mustard gas or nerve agents but the main concern with the mask is whether or not gas can seep through or past it. Is the rubber in good shape? Ive tried several and all are air tight. I’ve owned and tested a couple of the so called “obsolete” designs people have trashed online in the past and they did fine against things like pepper spray and smoke from burning plastic in an enclosed area.
Basically If the air and situation is unbreathable. Use your mask to get the heck out… then change the filter.
I have to say I really like the Evolution 5000 Military gasmask which includes a drinking straw attachment, enabling you to have a drink with the mask on.A drinking tube is also a must. Filters are so much easier to change. Screw off, screw on.
I will also say that a one piece visor or at least teardrop shaped ones are a big plus. They make it much easier to aim a weapon and use peripheral vision.
Another option one of my buddies swears by are the Swiss ones, they are popular also. Their filters are cheap. Centerfire was selling them so cheap they were hard to pass up. It was something like 3 for $25. All new filters too. Remember, new filters only.
My old M17A1 series I had in the military and a German one I got from a place like Cheaper than dirt. Both the same style and filters are almost the same. If this is the kind you’re used too then fine. For the M17 series to change filters the trick is a ball point pen to get them nubs through the holes. Put the pen in the hole and slip it over the nubby thingy.
I get asked this question all the time so I figured it would be fun to do a blog post about it.
To me the best states to be a prepper have quite a few criteria they must meet.
* Mild Winters (my choice – see below)
* Low Population density
* Cheap Cost of Living
* No water shortages
* Sane Gun laws
* Long growing cycles for your vegetable garden
* Available jobs
Before we go through my top 9 picks I’ll list a few that many of you favor that are not for me:
Alaska – I have some friends in the prepping world who swear by Alaska but for me it just doesn’t hit enough of my targets to be considered a smart move. Very cold, short growing cycles, the average cost of goods there ..right now (before any collapse) is excessively expensive compared to the lower 48. For me a big pass.
Hawaii – for a small group of islands Hawaii is very densely populated, cost of goods is extremely expensive as it is right now and I think the risks of flooding, Tsunamis etc is just too great for me to take seriously. Also unlike most of the US the risks of active volcanoes erupting is extremely high too, especially on the big island. Too bad as the weather would be perfect for me.
Maine / Upper Peninsula Michigan – I like Maine for having low population density, affordable cost of living and sensible gun laws, however for me personally it is just way too cold. I did state above that some where with a mild winter is what I am personally looking for, I do understand and appreciate that many people are not big fans of a blazing hot summer so maybe its right for you. Same goes for the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, still plenty of affordable properties to be had, however the winters can be pretty brutal. My understanding is both areas are not the greatest for job opportunities
either. Another plus point for both states is you do have access to waterways if you did need to bug out to sea. From memory too Maine has over 2000 islands off its coast line. Making Maine of of the best choices if you insist on staying on the East Coast.
Florida Everglades – I have a few friends who are set up in the everglades as their go to when the SHTF – like me they really don’t fancy toughing it out in cold weather, Florida does have decent weather (outside of Hurricane season) so long growth cycles for your veggies, land in some places is still very affordable (especially when you compare it to the North East), however it is pretty heavily populated in the most parts (Over 20 million people last time I checked) and if the science experts are to be believed then with global warming and rising ocean tides, a lot of the state could end up under
water. It also has the highest rate of Natural disasters in the Nation. Holding up in the everglades as well you would have to take into account the dangers of Alligators, snakes, poisonous spiders and even panthers (in some part of the state)
California – is a beautiful state but there are so many reasons why it doesn’t make sense for us preppers. Terrible gun laws, the most populated state in the country (30 million people) coastal state and on a major fault line. As a heavily taxed state many small companies have fled to more tax friendly states (such as Texas) although I am sure there are still many more job opportunities here versus some of the other states I have covered so far. If you had family ties here and were adverse to leaving the state I would think that some parts of the North East might be okay for setting up your compound or homestead.
The Carolinas – Long ago I learned that over two thirds of Americans live east of the Mississippi. The fact that most Eastern states are heavily populated (not to mention the majority of Nuclear Power plants in the eastern states) makes the majority of them a BIG NO. However I do think that out any of the eastern states that do fit the criteria of low population density, low cost of living, mild winters, good growing seasons and smart gun laws then parts of the Carolina’s (and even West Virginia) might work out for you.
The Majority of the Midwest – Outside of the threat of living in Tornado alley I used to think a lot of the midwest would be a safe bet to set up your Bug Out Location. Geologists for years have monitored California for the San Andreas fault line now believe that the New Madrid fault line running right through the mid west now appears to be an even bigger danger than the “big One” in California ever will be. The States that will be hit the hardest are Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Mississippi.
Colorado – although west of the Mississippi Colorado has a lot of snow fall which rules it out for me (but possibly not you) Their winters are actually fairly warm, but keep in mind that there are a couple of significant military bases in CO. which makes it a sure missile target if WW3 ever kicks off. So for me and my family we ruled it out.
So now that we have covered the states that I believe would be prudent to avoid let’s look at my top favorites and why I think they make the most sense.
Arizona – warm weather cost of living still affordable excellent gun laws..down side..possible water shortages / drought in the future. Still one of the best choices if you want to continue to live in America’s South West
Wyoming – is a good choice with cheap land , smart gun laws and low population density – the only down side for me is the short growing cycles due to the cold weather and some say the soil there isn’t the greatest (for farming). I also do want to mention the very real threat of a super volcano eruption at Yellowstone park which is probably tantamount to living next door to a nuclear reactor. As devastation to the area would be fatal. So that counts out the Northern part of the state for sure.
South Dakota – Definitely one of the best states for us preppers, low crime rates, low population density, affordable farm land , decent growing cycles. Highly recommended.
North Dakota – not as ideal as South Dakota due to being much colder and therefore having shorter growing seasons.
Nebraska – is a good state to prep in , sane gun laws, low rates of unemployment, decent population density and still some affordable land to be had. It does have some natural disasters, Tornadoes and flooding so choose your BOL wisely.
Iowa – is another great state to hunker down in, the soil quality for its farm land is some of the best in the country albeit a bit more pricey than some of the other states I have recommended in this blog post. Other than pricey land Iowa checks all the boxes with good gun laws, low population density and a low crime rate.
Montana – another good state for preppers, much like Wyoming has affordable land low crime rates and a low population density the only real downside being its fairly cold climate – which was something I was trying to avoid but like I mention above if that’s not an issue for you then yes go for it.
Idaho – definitely one of the best states for preppers, weather is pretty decent , especially in the southern part of the state, land is still pretty much affordable, decent population density, good gun laws and relativity low rates of violent crime.
Oregon – top pick for me ..as long as you are removed from any of its major cities. Moderate climate, affordable land, low crime rates (outside of the cities)
Let me know what states are your favorites in the comments section below, be curious to hear your feedback.
Perhaps you are happy with the status quo of today. Perhaps you feel all is fine and you don’t feel the need to change a system that’s worked for over a century. If you do, consider a few of these benefits to solar power and you may just recognize its potential in a somewhat more responsible, yet selfish, light.
I don’t care about the environment?
Perhaps everything in the world is fine with your life. The last thing you care about are trees, fresh air and clean water. Heck, the water shows up every time you turn on a faucet, the heat comes on when it’s cold, the light switch brings you light. What’s there to worry about? Consider that this is just the problem. If you don’t care for the environment, the faucet may not bring you clean water, the heat may not go on and the car certainly will not start. If the environment is kept clean and left to do what it was intended to do, everything will continue to work fine. But get in its way and everything you thought was fine won’t be for long.
One way to accomplish the goal of keeping all the comforts of home working properly is by using other sources of power generation like the sun, not generating nasty things that get in the way of the environment doing its job. Current sources of power come from dead things like old forests gone millennium ago. Environmentally responsible power, heat and transport come from living or energized things like water and oxygen molecules. Sun can be turned into electricity and used to power your car, heat your home and generate your light. But to make the process work, you need to be able to see the sun, which means caring for the environment and not getting in its way.
One of the best things about caring for the suns ability to do its job is that it saves you money in the long run. Once solar systems are purchased and installed, they cost little if anything to operate. In most instances, the government will even help to pay for the upfront costs of installing the system through tax incentives. Additionally, power companies in most regions are required to pay you for energy that you have generated and not used. Yes, you read correctly, the power company will pay you!
In most instances, 70% of the northern hemisphere can generate enough solar power to run and heat their homes with existing solar systems. This means that whatever is left over goes back to the power grid if you so choose. Just think of your power meter running backwards. The extra power you need for that cloudy day is stored in ever more efficient batteries. Most current users indicate that the use of solar systems only takes a little thought in power management.
Off the grid
Depending upon how you feel about the topic, one of the better reasons to use solar power is that you can take yourself off the “grid” so to speak. Many people don’t enjoy being a part of the social collective that is interconnectivity. Going solar takes you away from this one aspect of community and puts you closer to self reliance.
Even though the solar power generation systems of today have come a long way to providing power, heat and a host of other services there is a long way to go. This is not to indicate, however, that solar power is not currently versatile in form and function. Solar panels can currently be formed into thin sheets to for car top electric powered cars. They can cover suburban rooftops and not be noticed, unlike those 1970’s units. Costs are also coming down almost as fast as the flat screen TV’s of today. Flat screens that solar power can power up through the use of a process called photovoltaic’s.
Past the cost savings and environmental benefits that solar power brings you should consider using it because you are part of a larger social order that will procreate. The human species has not been around for all that long and is doing its best to end its run in one way or another. If you would like to give your children’s children a better shot at continuing the human species run on this planet solar power is one small contribution that you can make all by your little self.
I got a letter today from a long time reader who was curious to see what I would recommend for a bug out vehicle. I am sure if you asked most preppers secretly they would prefer something like the battle truck out of Mad Max The Road Warrior but the harsh reality is plenty of us do not have the money to afford a “wish list” bug out vehicle.
So what sort of criteria is important for bug out transport?
I would say you need something with a bit of room say, seats 4 people plus ample storage space too. A motocross bike may come in handy to weave in and out of traffic jams and for traversing rough terrain but is next to impossible to accommodate grandma and your 4 yo daughter.
Our bug out vehicle has to be able to handle rough conditions (so 4 wheel drive ideally) and be affordable. If we are factoring in the possibility of an EMP attack (or solar flare) then you may want to also own an older vehicle that doesn’t have all the on board computers that most modern day vehicles have. After an EMP a pre-computer vehicle has a much better chance of working – even if the starter system is fried you can always roll start it. If one can afford it, a spare alternator/generator, starter, dry battery and battery acid, would be nice to have, just in case
Considering that we are not planning on owning a Mad max battle truck it also make sense to purchase something we can use on a day to day basis too. All joking aside on Mad Max battle trucks but keep in mind in a SHTF bug out situation driving a vehicle like that may make you a prime target for looters and roaming gangs as they are going to think you have a lot of items of value on board. In this sense it might pay to be more “hidden in plain site” like an 80s style station wagon with a reinforced bumper than some tricked out $200,000 Hummer.
So what are some good affordable options?
My 3 main choices would have to be one of the following depending on your personal tastes and whats available in the local market near you
4wd Jeep – you can get some great used jeeps out in the marketplace now that seat 4 or more people and are 4 wheel drive versions, for those of us who are concerned about a long term societal collapse and the degradation of fuel quality there are diesel options available too.Keep in mind most recent year models you will be looking to spend over $25,000 so you may have to opt for a 1990s model.
Crew Cab truck – there are some great choices out there in the marketplace these days – just make sure you get a 4 wheel drive option. Invest in reinforced suspension and a cover for the flat bed and you are good to go.
SUVs – another smart choice for a bug out vehicle as they are everywhere and do not look too out of place. Again like pick up trucks make sure you get one with good four wheel drive.
Finally if you are still enamored by the idea of a Mad max Battle truck you could get a diesel school bus super cheap well maintained and very cheap to buy. They can roll over and you can survive and they can push things out of the way it’s like a big tank all steel bumpers etc.
Ultimately, a lot comes down to your personal choice but I think really any vehicle that is a reliable runner and you have fuel for can be your Bug Out Vehicle, heck even a solid mountain bike might get you out of dodge when all the gasoline goes bad. Stay Safe folks.