I have a skystream in texas and for the last three months it has produced over
500 kwh each month. I can't help but think of the upcoming chevy volt. It is
supposedly uses around 2800 kwh a year at 40 miles a day. If gas is 3.oo or more
a gallon and the generator is 11000 to 15000 this pays of quickly. Gas for me is
3 to 4 thousand a year at that price. Were talking five years or lease payoff!
The life expectancey of Skystream is 20 years and probably can be fixed fairly
easily. Think about it.
Hi Mike, glad to see you are trying to make a little impact and easing the
pressure a little on the environment. This is an old friend from Colorado and
the last time I saw you was in Realto. I have been thinking some about a wind
turbine lately too but where I live I don't get much wind except when we get the
high canyon winds that would blow them away. Keep up the good work!!
Way to go, dad! I'm proud of you for going green!!
We have a Whisper 500 wind turbine and a solar array. It's wonderful to be
completely off the grid. At night when the solar array is not charging the
batteries, many times the wind will keep them powered up. When Rocky Mountain
Power has outages, our lights are still on. Let's all go green! It's not always
about the money!
An average electric bill is on the order of $150 per month, or $1,800 per year.
If your generator is able to eliminate that bill (not likely - it will more
likely just reduce it) - then at that rate ($1,800 per year), and neglecting
inflation, payback is 7.2 years. The effective interest rate on your $13,000
investment is a whole whopping 1/2 percent (actually, 0.45%), so not even 1%.
In financial terms, the current "today" value of the project to you
is -$5,800; in other words, you are LOSING $5,800 on the deal. And that is not
including inflation, which makes the loss even greater. And if you take out a
$13,000 LOAN with interest - oh my, the pain just gets really bad! Then again, you could put your $13,000 into some other investment at a decent
interest rate; at 8% it will be worth a little over $22,000 in 7 years.
Just wondering if the sensible scientist would oppose large flag poles that we
often see in yards all over town? No one seems to have a problem with them,
myself included, but because a wind tower has three spinning arms, they seem to
be considered an eyesore by some. Not sure why!
My wind turbine is a Skystream 3.7 Another product is made by a company called
Helix wind out of San Diego. They manufacture a vertical axis wind turbine. It
is very attractive and will catch the wind from all directions as it spins on a
vertical axis. They are a little more expensive however.
After reading this article, I went on the internet and looked at home wind
power, and didn't find as much comprehensive information as expected. What
company did Mr. Brooks use to buy these windmills and does the company install
Just because something is politically popular does not mean zoning and other
local decisions should treat it any differently than any other structure. The
big moving parts give it an especially high visual impact.I would
oppose one in my neighborhood just as I would oppose a billboard or other high
visual impact structure.
"Windmills are LOUD"Ummm... no. They only make appreciable noise
when they're spinning in a stiff wind - which means it's already loud outside.
Windmills are LOUD
I was mistaken about your business. My apologies to you Michael Brooks.
I happen to know Michael Brooks and he is not in the Wind Turbine business. I
also am aware of the company that sold it to him so get your facts right. I tend
to believe you know as much about wind power as you do Michael Brooks!
Scotty, I am not in the wind turbine business and am not making any money off
of this or benifiting from the publicity. You seem to be a little confused on
all of your facts.
Wind power is highly efficient - even more so than solar. That's a fact.Wind turbines are nearly silent - especially the smaller ones intended
for single residences. That's another fact. Maintenance on them is minimal.Let's say that after tax credits and other incentives you're still
looking at amortizing $8k. If your current (no pun intended) electricity bill
is $150/month and you cut that by 40% with your wind turbine, then you've
recouped your investment in ten years - all the while reducing your demand for
coal-fed power and the need for more coal-fired power plants. And if you use
your wind power to generate electricity that charges your electric car overnight
(ala the new plug-in hybrids such as the Chevy Volt), then you're also reducing
our dependency on foreign oil.I think the wind turbines are
beautiful - both in operation, and in terms of what they do for both our economy
and the livability of our communities.Clear the air, folks. Wind &
solar are the future.I just wish I lived in a part of the world
where it was windy.
Michael Brooks is not an unbiased, neutral observer on this subject. Selling
wind turbines is his business. Naturally he is going to say how wonderful they
are. This is all great publicity for his business, and puts money in his
pocket.The truth is that wind turbines are of marginal value at the
most. The initial costs are very high, and it takes years just to break even.
After a few years, the maintenance costs become so high, that it greatly reduces
the net return. Yes, they are eyesores, and noisey, but the biggest downfall of
wind turbines is the fact that for many days out of the year, the wind doesn't
blow strong enough to make the turbines productive.
how thrilled the power companies will be to think that we can create our own
power and thereby reduce our dependency on them? Yeah, this is going to happen.
I had one of these in Wyoming and I can vouch for the cost savings over the long
run. Yes there are maintenance costs but they are minimal. Yes the utility
companies are wary but as yet there are no "punishment" type tactics being
anticipated. When I installed mine in Wyoming the power company was oblivious
and the tech even laughed. Then 2 years later I had regular power bills that
were virtually non-existent. However if these home windmills catch on (aka lower
costs) you can bet there will be repercussions. The big utility companies will
demand monetary reparations because companies like PG&E and Pacific Power like
being the big boys on the block and they like exclusive. My advice is to get
them in while you can because soon that may change. States in fiscal trouble
like Utah may decide to treat these things as potential tax revenue streams and
that will kill the incentive. Government simply can not stand up to their cash
cows (political donations) on these issues and the average citizen will get
rolled.Count on it.
It's very appealing to be able to generate your own electricity. However, a lot
of wind turbines in my sub division would really stand out because our power
lines are buried. I can see why people wouldn't want 45 feet structures in their
face. Hence cities need to have an ordinance in place.
I think this is a great idea. Take advantage of the power mother nature has
given us! The turbines in the picture are attractive and don't seem to be an
eyesore at all. Maybe the idea will catch on and we can reduce our dependance
on man made power. Good for you, Mr. Brooks.
The turbine shown in the photo is next to a horse farm. It is on a large lot and
away from the house. Putting them on smaller lots next to houses is a different
matter. I can understand why people would object. I've seen photos of wind
turbines that are cylindrical in shape, about two feet in diameter, and not much
higher than the roof of the house. These look a lot more feasible than the ones
shown in the photo.
We will never win the war against climate change as long as planning and zoning
commissions exist. Their sole purpose is to impede environmental progress by
slowing down the installation of dispersed power sources.
Go people go. These should and must be about everywhere there is enough wind. It
is only smart and it makes common sense. Of course the placement must be safe
and sound and the local laws should allow these with temperance. Hopefully in
more congested areas these can be allowed with smart laws.
I love the idea of installing a device like this that will ultimately offer free
non-polluting electricity, these small backyard turbines are expensive at the
onset though, maybe as time goes by the cost can decrease. Driving
through a windfarm in Minnesota last summer gave me the heeby-jeebies, there was
something about those huge, slow moving turbine arms that just creeped me out,
don't know why, I'm probably the only person who ever had that reaction to a
I'm not sure who researched this article but the current incentives do not cover
50%. The fed covers 30% and the state caps the incentive. No engineering costs
or permit fees are included. Don't be misled but by all means consider clean
The article helpfully explains that a wind turbine is a "mechanical windmill."
As opposed to what? What kind of windmill isn't mechanical?
Why this has not been widely publicized has me a bit confused. They are an asset
and they can save billions is oil and coal dependence for power companies. Many
rural area farms have converted to these wind generators and I think it's a good
idea in residential housing. As for property value, it would be a plus for
me.My biggest concern in researching these is the longevity of the
turbines and maintaining and repairing them. The one improvement I have been
waiting for is the incorporation of pitch changeable props to neutralize them in
higher than design winds. They have built in clutches to maintain speed but they
can wear and overheat. Although less than 50 feet high, they should still have
aircraft warning lights on top if near any airports or in flight patterns.I wouldn't be surprised if the power companies come out with some major
campaigning for a state law to ban these power saving wind turbines for
residential use, with all kinds perceived safety reasons plus loss of revenues
issues for them.
Where can I buy one. firstname.lastname@example.org
As long as it isn't a skate park, it is fine!
This is a great idea. I was wondering when this would happen. It just makes
sense to become as efficient as possible. I'm no tree hugger, but this is very
interesting. How long would it take to make back $13,000 on power bills? Also,
when the power goes out and the generator still powers the house, that could be
life-saving. I'd like to see how this compares to solar power.
We have to wait for local cities to create one so we can build a wind turbine?
My question is if there is no ordinance regarding windmills, why it would be
illegal to put one up in the first place. Laws don't give us permission to do
something; according to Utah State Code, if it's not on the books as something
that's illegal, then it's not illegal.