Off grid living, this creative family made it into their daily reality.

Living off-grid has become a reality for this family of 4. They’ve been living for 8 years (counting from 2021) completely off grid in the Belgian Ardennes. This creative family clearly has an entrepreneurial and adventurous spirit and lifestyle. Solar panels provide the electricity, the use batteries to store the power, there’s also a generator in case of shortage. Water comes from a well in the garden and they heat the house with locally sourced wood.

 You can visit the eco conscious webshop via this link

 How to live off-grid? 

Many people dream of living a self-sufficient life and being off-grid. … Off-grid living means that your house is not connected to the electricity grid and natural gas and sometimes also not to the water or telephone network. Off-grid living roughly means that you are not connected to the electricity grid, the gas grid, the water supply or the sewage system. Many people also call it ‘self-sufficient’ however this implies that you completely grow your own food and recycle your own waste. This is called off-grid living, or “off the grid”. When you are off-grid, you live independently from the energy and water grid.

Self-sufficient with or without connection

There are several ways to live off grid. Firstly, you can simply not use the possibility of electricity and water and provide this yourself (as much as possible). This can possibly be supplemented with the connection, such as a house with solar panels that still uses power from the grid when there is not enough sun, or the collection of rainwater just for watering the garden. A second option is to live completely without regular connections, without connection to the electricity network or water supply. Here you will need to have your own alternative for both facilities.

Self-sufficient in water

If you collect most of the rainwater in a good way, purify and store it, then you will go a long way. Via the roof or a terrace, the water can be discharged to a tank and thus enter the internal water network. You can also use a well for water, or purify the water from a river. However, these options are often more difficult, as surface water is very often polluted. With a good filter, rainwater can be made into drinking water and can therefore be used for showers and other water needs. Of course you also have to think about the disposal of the water, especially the gray water and sewage. Here again, a filtration system is needed and then a drainage system for all the water. In addition, you can go for a compost toilet, and when showering and washing up make sure you use purely biodegradable soap, so the water can simply go back into the ground.

Self-sufficient in energy

Besides water for drinking and sanitation, you need energy for heat, light and possibly electrical appliances. Energy can come from different sources, so it’s all about how you generate it, how you store it and then how you use it. Electricity is therefore the obvious energy, which can be generated using, for example, solar panels, wind turbines, biogas and hydropower and then stored in batteries or used immediately. For example, to heat the house with a heat pump in combination with good insulation, or to power the lights and appliances. How much electricity you generate obviously determines how much you can use. Besides electricity you can also think of portable gas tanks for a gas stove or a simple wood stove that heats the house and can also be used for cooking. The heat from the sun can also be used to directly heat water for showering and washing.

The road to self-sufficient living

Living off grid does not happen overnight. The home will have to be adapted to consume less overall. Energy efficient appliances, solid insulation, smart modifications and a lifestyle with less waste are on the right track. With the changing climate and energy bills showing an upward trend, it is an increasingly attractive idea to get rid of general utilities. Of course, you don’t have to stop there. To move further down the road to complete self-sufficiency, you can look at growing your own fruits and vegetables, raising chickens for eggs and meat, composting and creative waste management, and all kinds of crafts like knitting and furniture making.

 You can visit the eco conscious webshop via this link

 Video production by