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Questions About Windpire Turbine

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hello all. I'm new to this forum and I have some questions about a Windspire we've had for about a year now.

 

Simply put, it does not appear to be producing anywhere near what we had hoped. We live just west of West Lafayette, IN on 10 acres. They've had some issues with their inverters, but we have a new one now. I'm not sure I fully expected to get 2000 Kwh out of it, but we've produced 7 since December 22.

 

A few notes on our site might be in order. There's nothing within a 100 ft radius. About 150 feet away to the west is a row of 30-40 foot white pines. To the north and south are lots of 15-20 foot pines. Our house is to the east.

 

I was wondering if anyone out there has experience with the Windspire specifically or any other small wind turbine.

 

Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 3

Simply put, these small scale wind turbines in our area do not produce the kwh as advertised. You should invest your money in something like a ground source heat pump or weatherizing your home. Solar is not much better. If you want to buy one because it makes you feel better than do it.

My job is to monitor energy usage at an electric coop. Most wind mills on our system have at least a 100year return on investment. Some produce less than 100kwh per year. At $0.08 a kwh thats $8.00 per year of savings.This is not a good investment for the enviroment or finacialy.

post #3 of 3

The best way to determine what you are getting in relation to what you ought to get is to buy a meter to measure your wind velocity.  They are inexpensive hand-held devices ($10 to $20).  Windspire markets a dongle to attach to your computer to measure rotational speed of your Windspire and power generated.  Remember, you don't begin generating any power until the wind speed exceeds 15 mph or so.  And even then it takes more than an occasional gust to activate the generator.

 

We here in NH on a ridge at elevation 1100 feet seldom get a consistent wind at that level.  My objection to the Windspire has to do with the oscillation (wobble) that develops at 65-70 RPM.  It is so severe that I have had to lower the unit for fear that it would tear the welds at the hinge plate.  The top appears at that speed to oscillate about a 2 foot radius, creating much more stress than I felt the unit could stand.  The company has yet to replace this unit.

 

Good luck!  In your case first determine wind speed, then evaluate the power output when wind speed exceeds 15 mph.

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