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Survive Off the Grid: Alternatives to Mains Electricity | Jaycar

Survive Off the Grid: Alternatives to Mains Electricity | Jaycar

Updated August 2023

Survive Off the Grid

Nothing shocks you like a blackout: we often don't realise how much we take mains power for granted until it's suddenly unavailable.

Sometimes the lack of 240V supply is a simple matter of being away from civilisation, but whatever the reason, there are various ways to supply your own AC. Once you’ve identified what worries you most about losing access to mains power, you can prepare for any contingency.

When might you miss AC power the most?

● When you're camping, or spending any length of time in a remote area without reliable mains power.

● To supply essential electronics - for example, if you really need your desktop computer - during a blackout.

● To ensure your surveillance system keeps functioning during a power outage.

What are your alternatives?

● For maximum output with minimum hassle, a petrol generator is usually the best option: it can push power for as long as you keep topping up the fuel. The downside is that it’s smelly, noisy, and not environmentally friendly.

● A solar array with a battery and inverter is an easy option for outdoor adventures or the garden shed. Wind turbines can produce an impressive output of up to 2000W/48V in strong wind, but they are limited to use in areas with a steady breeze.

● If your greatest fear is burglars taking advantage of a blackout, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) is the perfect way to keep your surveillance going. Read our detailed guide about what parameters to consider.