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9 votes

What are effective ways to make a home significantly more sustainable when renting?

Thermal lined curtains would make a big difference especially if the windows are single glazed. Draught proofing using self-adhesive strip is both subtle and removable. Topping up loft insulation, as ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
8 votes
Accepted

How to use a band brake cable with my home built wind turbine?

A scheme used on many BMX bikes is a "detangler" disk on the fork. It's actually two disks, surrounding the fork shaft, arranged with flanges such that pulling up on the upper disk lifts the lower ...
Hot Licks's user avatar
  • 195
6 votes
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What is the most environmentally friendly way to paint/preserve wooden art or construction outdoors?

Our preferred solution here (on land and for seagoing wooden boats) is linseed oil based paints, or just plain (raw) linseed oil. The oil soaks in the wood and therefore prevent water to soak into it ...
Gwarems's user avatar
  • 146
6 votes

What are effective ways to make a home significantly more sustainable when renting?

Faucet aerators are cheap ways to help save water and you can install/uninstall them pretty easily. SmartStrips and other power-saving devices can help cut off phantom loads. Most innovations ...
WBT's user avatar
  • 328
5 votes
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What are effective ways to make a home significantly more sustainable when renting?

One important thing is to talk to your landlord. In anglonesia I've found some landlords will negotiate improvements on a "you do the work to a professional standard, they reap the benefit when you ...
Ⴖuі's user avatar
  • 1,307
5 votes

Is there a difference between DC \ PV cable and AC cable?

The phenomenon that leads to all of this is called the "skin effect". Basically, DC current flows through a wire evenly, whereas AC current tends to want to flow along the outer edge (the "skin") of ...
Tim's user avatar
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5 votes
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Does Sawdust for Humanure/Composting Toilet need to be Powder?

The role of sawdust/shavings in composting toilets is four-fold: Visually hide your waste so the next person using the toilet doesn't need to see it Trap gases immediately above the waste so that ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 2,844
3 votes

What plastics are safe/useful to melt?

Many plastics can be used for melting, but not all. Basically there are 2 types to distinguish here; thermoplastics and thermosetting plastics. Thermoplastics can be heated and shaped. Examples are ...
THelper's user avatar
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3 votes

Organic or Homemade equivalent White board Cleaning liquid & scrub?

I use lab alcohol for the ones in work. You need a solvent to free up the inks. At home I'd use methylated spirits (alcohol stove fuel). Flambe alcohol might work. You could test some vodka but the ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
2 votes

How can I determine the U-value (or R-value) of my existing double glazing system?

My challenge was slightly different. I was purchasing new NorthStar windows to replace all of the old windows in my house but wanted to make sure I was getting what I paid for, as the windows would ...
Bob's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes

Can I recycle plastics at home by melting and molding?

Depending on the type of reshaping you are interested in, you can do basic crafts with the right kind of plastic by simply using a hairblower to heat them up and bending them into shape.
Jennifer Rae Pierce's user avatar
2 votes

How to fix plastic (acetate) glasses frame?

Well, here's an "out of the box " answer to broken glasses. If it's at the bridge and a pretty even brake use some electrical heat shrink tubing. It comes in lots of colors (including clear) it's ...
alan's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes

How can I build a spinning wheel?

It seems the bottom line of the question is low cost spinning wheel. The Dodeca wheeldesign is available free on line. This has been noted in another post. Porter also sells this wheel and a ...
Sarah's user avatar
  • 123
2 votes

How can I form heat sinks from waste aluminum?

Forget the foil. Even if you laminate it, you'll never eliminate tiny air gaps, which will make it into a fairly effective insulator. I've seen (copper) heatsinks made from thin precision-cut fins, ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
2 votes

DIY portable solar panel mount

What about a set of "rabbit ears" from an old TV or TV antenna? With two sets you should be able to use them to prop the panel, depending on how heavy it is and how substantial the antennas ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
2 votes
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How to identify the rating of my electrical panel

Yes, the short of it is that what we’re concerned with on solar is the internal bus rating of the panel’s buses, not anything else. Suppose you have a 100A main breaker because your wiring from pole ...
Harper - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
1 vote

What is the most environmentally friendly way to paint/preserve wooden art or construction outdoors?

In Europe in mediaeval times, the external woodwork of timbered houses was painted with bulls' blood (hence the traditional dark red colour). Apparently it had to be bulls' blood and not pig, for ...
RedSonja's user avatar
  • 425
1 vote

Creating a string of six 2V batteries in series to power an inverter

250–300A for 5 minutes? Sounds like a welder. Power draw during that burst = 300*12 = 3600W = 3.6kW. /glancesDubiouslyAt "3kW inverter" I think you'll be tripping the safety shut-down on the ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 2,844
1 vote

How to use a band brake cable with my home built wind turbine?

Another option might be to leave the actuation cable dangling downward from a small hole in the housing. You'll probably have a regular old bike brake lever on a short length of wooden dowel as a ...
Criggie's user avatar
  • 111
1 vote

Book recommendation on traditional, pre-industrial homesteading

I know you asked for a book, but until then, have you ever come across this youtube channel? Townsends has videos not only about recipes but also about different techniques of building stuff around ...
Akabelle's user avatar
  • 261
1 vote
Accepted

how to make active charcoal soap rinse away?

There are three ways I know of: 1: High PH (alkaline) cleaner such as borax, soda ash, baking soda. If you are able to raise the PH above the PH of the charcoal, it will come right off. 2: Natural ...
Gregory Smitherman's user avatar
1 vote

What is the problem in my aquaponics system?

To determine if lighting levels are responsible, I suggest you put similar plants (tomatoes, cucumbers and green beans) into self-contained pots (using potting mix) and sit them within the same ...
Highly Irregular's user avatar
1 vote

Environmental concerns of a plastic bottle boat?

The boat made from plastic bottles is a nonsense. One day it falls apart and makes more pollution to the environment, than the recycled bottle. If the boat is motorized, then this could be the source ...
Dee's user avatar
  • 491
1 vote

Is it possible to reverse the air flow of a roof turbine/whirlybird?

Not with a whirlybird ventilator. The idea here is that it acts as a centrifugal fan. Air will always go from the centre to the outside. To do what you want, you need to decouple the whirlybird ...
Sherwood Botsford's user avatar
1 vote

Trying to figure out what to buy for my solar power system

This proposed system wouldn't work as described. With the quantity of batteries, panels, and your inverter that you've described, the system size would be - 1kW solar, 14.4kWh batteries @48V (see note ...
Maxfield Solar's user avatar
1 vote

Detailed breakdown of Solar PV installation site test (site survey)

Partial answer: Most of this boils down to what the availability of sunlight at your location is. Factor 1: How much sunlight does your area get? Try googling "PV potential resource atlas" This ...
Sherwood Botsford's user avatar
1 vote

How to filter/dewater water mixed with water-based paint

This is easy, but it means additives and process. 1% Ferric Sulphate or Ferric Chloride w/w, 5% lime solution w/w (50grm/ltr solution, 1.5% Bentonite solution (50gr/ltr solution), 1% Perlite body aid ...
I told you so's user avatar
1 vote

What is a good way to produce drinking water?

Access to safe drinking water for human consumption remains a global challenge, affecting an estimated 2.2 billion people. In recent years, devices for collecting water from the atmosphere - similar ...
Behemooth's user avatar
  • 111

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