This is your complete guide to finding the best off grid appliances. Maybe you’re looking into buying a second home as a get away or a cabin set back into the forest. This guide will help you live comfortably while not being connected to a municipal power grid. Not all things have to be sacrificed for living the simple life. Off grid cooking has become significantly more convenient in recent years. With the rise of solar and wind power, off the grid appliances are easier to find now more than ever! This guide is not restricted only to those who own a second home or cabin in the woods. Home owners can also take advantage of these unique off grid appliances to lower their carbon footprint.
Here at The Energy Professor, we want to give you the information you need to not only save money on your energy bill, but to also become more energy efficient. We hope find this post helpful! And makes it easier for you to know more about off grid appliances. Be sure to also check out our one of a kind energy savings calculator!
9 Unique Off-Grid Appliances 2023
One of the main reasons people decide not to go off-grid for a second home or cabin is due to modern conveniences. The routine of daily life is so engrained in us that it’s near impossible to not survive without them. Thankfully, an off the grid kitchen is just as easy to put together as on on-grid kitchen. Offgrid appliances have come a long way in recent years making it easier than ever to live off of a municipal power grid. That’s why we have put together this complete guide for some of the most unique off grid appliances. But before we get to our list, let’s cover some of the basics.
What is an Off Grid Appliance?
- An off-grid appliance is any type of household appliance such as your fridge, washer/dryer, or water heater that uses self sustaining energy. This means that the energy used to power an off-grid appliance comes from another source other than a municipal power grid.
The easiest way to know the biggest difference is to know what you pay for. If your energy is set up through an energy provider, you are on a municipal grid. Energy that is provided to your home through means of harvesting energy yourself is off-grid. The largest indicator if you’re on or off grid if you receive an electrical bill for all of your appliances and energy usage. It is possible to have an off grid propane refrigerator that you do not pay energy for on your monthly bill. As always, we recommend all of our clients to read and know what you’re getting charged for!
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Power Sources for Off Grid Appliance
The next thing to understand about off grid products is how to power them. There are many different ways to power your modern off grid kitchen. The most popular source of power comes from propane. This is a very accessible, cost friendly way of providing energy to an appliance without connecting it to electricity. The second most popular when cooking off the grid is to use solar energy. Solar energy can be harvested by solar panels attached to your roof or in an open area near your home. These panels capture solar rays from the sun and turn that into energy used to power your home! While more expensive than propane, it is more cost effective in the long run to use solar power. If you’re not in a position to purchase solar panels for your home, we recommend looking into a Solar Leasing Program!
Top Sources of Off-Grid Power
- Some of the most common sources of off-grid power are solar, wind, and propane. There are other types of power sources such as hydroelectric power and gas-powered generators, but they’re not the most popular options.
The two less popular options are more difficult to come by or run a higher risk of using. Gas power for example will easily emit Carbon Monoxide which is deadly to humans when inhaled. What makes using this type of power even scarier is that the gas is completely odorless. So if you are leaning toward using a gas-powered generator, we highly suggest looking into also purchasing a CO detector.
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Best Off-Grid Appliances Ranked
Now that you know the basics of off grid appliances, we can finally get to our list of the 9 most unique off grid appliances! The list below was generated off of a few major factors including price, power source, and most useful. This is why you’ll notice most of the common house hold appliances are at the top of our list. While other more luxury off grid kitchen ideas are on the bottom end. We hope you find this guide helpful in your journey to be more energy efficient!
9 Must Have Off-Gird Appliances
- #1 – Off-Grid Refrigerator
- #2 – Freezer
- #3 – Water Heater
- #4 – Off-Grid Stove
- #5 – Washer/Dryer
- #6 – Grill
- #7 – Slow Cooker
- #8 – Portable Pizza Oven
- #9 – Off-Grid Hot Tub
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#1 – Off-Grid Refrigerator
Cost: $300 – $2,000
Power Source: Solar, Propane, & Gas Generator
Important Information: An investment in anything that resembles a normal electric powered refrigerator, it’s going to be an investment. However with an off the grid refrigerator, that return on investment comes sooner than later. There are also an array of off grid refrigerators that run on a combination of power supplies. Most commonly you’ll find solar/generator combinations as the generator serves as a back up on days when the sun isn’t out as much.
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#2 – Freezers
Cost: $400 – $1900
Power Source: All power types
Important Information: There are two major options when looking into an off grid freezer. The smaller more portable short-term type of freezer will run mostly on solar, wind, and can run as a 12 volt appliances off grid. Some of these freezers can even act as coolers and will have an adjustable temperature setting. This gives you the option to buy one and use it for both a freezer and fridge. The second option is a larger more permanent freezer that resembles the image above. This type of off grid freezer generally is only considered to be one of the 12 volt appliances off-grid living.
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#3 – Water Heater
Cost: $150 – $3000
Power Source: Solar and Propane
Important Information: In our personal opinion, this is one of the best off grid propane appliances. Like their conventional counterparts, this off-grid appliance uses propane to heat the water only when the tap is running. Meaning that the water is heated as it gets withdrawn from the tank. There are solar options for this as well! Solar water tanks are a greener solution but come with some major downsides. The solar energy heats the water within the tank, not the water leaving the tank. So if there is not enough solar power, you could be stuck taking cold showers.
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#4 – Off-Grid Stove
Cost: $200 – $1500
Power Source: Propane
Important Information: Keeping it inexpensive and simple with an off grid propane stove is easy. There are plenty of small, two burner stove tops available to keep your off the gird living convenient. If you’re looking for a more conventional off grid cooking stove, there are also full size stoves and off grid ovens available. These models are typically only powered by propane so needing to refill your tanks is necessary. And if that isn’t your style, you can opt for an even more off-grid approach by placing a griddle on top of a wood burning fire.
Related Post: How to Know When to Refill Your Propane Tank
#5 – Washer/Dryer
Cost: $70 – $200
Power Source: None or Solar
Important Information: This is one of the only options on our list that won’t require any type of power other than manual. This off grid appliance can really come in handy and you don’t even have to bring a washboard down to the river front! All jokes aside, there are multiple options to wash and dry your clothes off grid. While some do require manual labor, there are some that have a propane dryer. A off grid propane washer and dryer is not necessary but can certainly come in handy when needing to do larger loads of laundry. We say, save money where you can!
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#6 – Grill
Cost: $100 – $1000
Power Source: Propane
Important Information: When you think of off the grid cooking, you think of the traditional BBQ Grill. Grilling has been a popular form of preparing food for ages and it’s one of the best ways to cook off-grid! Like most things on our list, you can go as simple or as elaborate as you feel. However keep in mind that the price will reflect your style. Most grills can be powered by propane. But like your washer and dryer, if you’re looking to minimize your use of propane, stick with charcoal or wood burning grills.
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#7 – Slow Cooker
Cost: $50 – $150
Power Source: 12-Volt DC Current
Important Information: Grilling isn’t your only option for off grid gadgets. An off-grid slow cooker can allow you to enjoy a hearty meal from time to time. Most popular slow-cooker meals include soups, casseroles, and other slow-cooked meals. The typical off-grid slow cooker can be easily attached to your generator battery supply for quick and easy power ups.
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#8 – Portable Pizza Oven
Cost: $150 – $1700
Power Source: Wood or Pellets
Important Information: Sometimes the urge to have a pizza night can take over even when you’re off the grid. And this is where this off grid cooker comes in handy! Portable pizza ovens are great off grid equipment and are easy to travel with! Some brands like the one pictured above, come with tote bags to make pizza night an easy and memorable night. Several types of pizza ovens are actually fueled by pellets and require no wood burning to toast your pies.
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#9 – Off-Grid Hot Tub
Cost: $800 – $10,000
Power Source: Wood & Propane
Important Information: The off-grid hot tub is last on our list because let’s face it, it’s the most luxury off grid appliance. A hot-tub is not a necessity when looking to live more off the grid. But we also know that nothing beats a soak in a hot bath. If you’re looking to invest into an off-grid hot tub, you have a couple options to choose from. The most convenient being a propane powered hot-tub. You can also choose to go a more simple route and do a wood burning hot tub. Our option would be to opt for a propane powered hot tub as you can adjust the temperature as needed.
Related Post: How Much Electric Does a Hot Tub Use?
Unique Off Grid Appliances FAQ
Q: How do I Know When it’s Time to Refill a Propane Tank?
A: You should change out or refill your tank when the tank feels light, Your Gauge Tells You It’s Low, The Flame Sputters On Your Propane Appliances, It’s Been a Few Months, The Tank Fails the Hot Water Test, Your Grill Won’t Light, or when You’re Thinking About the Changing Seasons.
Q: What is 12-Volt DC Current Device?
A: Many types of electronic equipment utilize a 12 volt power supply. They are frequently used in process controls, test equipment, communications, low voltage lighting and alarms. Power supplies with a 12 volt input or output are often used in applications related to vehicles.
Q: What is the Best off-grid Refrigerator?
A: Based on consumer reviews, the best off-grid fridge is CR45 48 Quart Portable Fridge/Freezer. This item comes with a capacity of 45L, adjustable temperature, and a sleek digital display, it’s the ultimate travel companion for all your outdoor adventures. Preserve the freshness and flavor of your food on every adventure.
Q: Which is the Best Propane Generator for Off-Grid Living?
A: According to Forbes Home 2023 List of Propane Generators, the best one for off-grid living is the Champion 12.5-kW Home Standby Generator. “Champion is among the newest companies in the home generator market but is quickly making its name with excellent quality propane generators that are built to last. Champion’s 12.5kW Home Standby Generator takes top marks on our propane generator list because of its whisper-quiet 63 dbA noise level and best-in-class 10-year warranty.”
Do you Need Cheaper Electricity?
If you’ve taken the time to understand the information on your bill and discovered you’re paying more than you’d like for your electricity, have you looked around for a cheaper deal? The Energy Professor has a wealth of information on ways to save on your utilities, including details of top deals that could significantly reduce your monthly or quarterly electricity bills.
We hope you found this article helpful! If you are looking for ways to increase the energy efficiency and sustainability in your home be sure to take a look at all of the latest renewable energy options in your area. The Energy Professor helps residential and small business owners find qualified energy suppliers in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Texas, Ohio, Maryland, Illinois, and Massachusetts