Some of you may know that for the past eleven years we’ve had our two chest freezers over at our neighbors place, the neighbors who are hooked up to the grid.
Perhaps of all our minor off-grid inconveniences this one has actually bothered me. I mean….what a pain to have to drive over the hill and down a long, muddy driveway to get some meat out of the freezers, or to bring fresh produce to it to be frozen. Yup, I’ve had enough of this arrangement for quite some time already.
The reason for not having the freezers at home was simply the fact that it took too much power to run them. When we first moved here, all we had was generator power and Farmer Hick had to run the generator three times a day for half an hour or more just to keep the freezers cold enough….it was a hot summer. After one week of this we approached our neighbors and arranged to bring our freezers to their barn. Every month or so we bring them some cash, pop in for a visit and help with various clean up jobs, which is no chore because they’re a lovely old couple. It’s been a wonderful arrangement, yet…inconvenient for me.
When we installed the solar panels a few years ago we were able to run equipment and appliances on solar electricity all day, as long as the sun was shining, but at night when the sun goes down our battery storage wasn’t big enough to supply power to the appliances through the night, this is why the freezers remained at the neighbors’. In fact, we are still waiting/saving to buy a big battery pack and we’re hoping to have that before too long.
Since the days are so long at the moment and there’s plenty of sun here during summer we decided to bring at least one freezer home to see how things would go.
So, up to the freezers we went by truck and trailer, Farmer Hick, Farm Boy, The Writer and myself. First we moved all frozen food into the truck bed then moved the freezer onto the trailer and off we went.
Once the freezer was plugged in at home, Farmer Hick connected the “Kill A Watt” to the freezer to see just how much power it was using.
The Kilowatt is a handy gadget that reads out how much power an appliance uses. Well, what a nice surprise…the freezer used just over a third of what our fridge uses and only intermittent at that. Once Farmer Hick saw this he decided to get the other freezer right away.
So we did.
Going to the freezers is easy and very convenient now.
I go a lot! Just to admire them….well, I do put food in (the chicken and bone broth I made over the last 2 days) and it’s lovely to take food out, like a loaf of bread at the last minute when both boys tell me they’re working in the morning and there’s not a slice of homemade bread left for their lunches.
It’s quite possible that nobody cares about my freezers and their location, why should anyone. As for me, I’m so happy with having them here at home, just had to blog about it.
And for anyone going off-grid…it’s a lot easier to keep a freezer frozen than a fridge chilled.
Wish someone had told us that!