Living off the grid has its own challenges. In these situations, say a wilderness setting, all the utilities would be contained in a separate structure located several metres away from the unit. The features that we take for granted in the city don’t come easy when going off grid but the technology has advanced to the point where the amount of work that is required on a regular basis can be kept to a minimum. We will be offering a separate, trailerable, utilities unit that can be located a small distance from the Tiny House.
Heating & Ventilation
A wood-furnace, which is essentially a water-jacketed wood stove would be located in it’s own shed, some distance from the unit for safety, and insulated piping would circulate heated water back to the unit. These have become quite inexpensive and are computer controlled so that the heat output of the unit can be varied with demand and the unit only needs to be stoked with firewood once a day, not every few hours like a typical wood stove. We may be offering a system based on wood pellets so that a weeks-worth of pellets can be fed into a hopper, making it extremely convenient.
Solar panel array system with battery backup is also a separate unit that can be located anywhere near the unit. Because heating and hot water is supplied from the wood furnace, the electrical demands are a lot lower and can easily be supplied by a small array of panels and a few batteries.
Stove, oven and refrigeration can be provided by propane. There are so many choices now.
Water collection and storage is a consideration when living off grid as the availability of rainwater is infrequent and the amount that can be collected depends on the surface area. This is pretty much limited to the roof area of the Tiny House, and the external utilities shed. Pulling from a local river or lake or even a well may still be required.
There are very interesting composting toilet systems now that use electricity (such as http://www.envirolet.ca/ and which can be located quite a few metres away from the Tiny House structure and require very little water usage.