DIY Green Energy Projects

Favorite Green Energy Related Resources


Looking for more?

Unlike the Materials page, which focuses on actual products, this page lists links to more information.

Here's a wide variety of favorite resouces and sites. While many are only listed here, some of these are also listed on other pages, but posted them here as a convenience.

Batteries and Electricity - A great site with many useful pages, including:

Learn About Wiring Solar Panels And Batteries - "There are three types of wiring configurations that are relatively easy to learn. Once mastered, the job of wiring batteries or solar modules becomes easy as pie.":

Battery Power for Your Residential Solar Electric System - Guide from the US gov.
Electronics Lab - All types of plans, circuits, etc for the DIY eletroncis experimenters

Solar Electricity Basics - "The three most common types of solar-electric systems are grid-intertied, grid-intertied with battery backup, and off-grid (stand-alone). Each has distinct applications and component needs."


DIY Links

Instructables for the Do It Yourselfer - Instructables has a bunch of "how to's" for all sorts of topics. If you like it, upgrade to the paid version, it's cheap and is well worth it.

Here's my favorite Instructables categories:

Favorite Instructable Categories:







BuildItSolar - Great site with links to more than 500 DIY projects, including solar, wind, for kids, frugal projects, cookers and dryers,

Low Impact Woodland Home - While the plans aren't really complete, a great example of how someone can build a great looking home for about $4000.

Project: YATC - Yet Another Temperature Controller - This is an open-source termperature controller you can make yourself, buy a kit or buy assembled. It will convert an inexpensive chest freezer into a refrigerator "Using the efficient design of chest freezers and running them at warmer temperatures (35F) can reduce electrical utilties by up to 10x. This is a must have for people living off-grid. No need to spend $2,000 on a energy star upright fridge which consumes 10x the energy of a $200 chest freezer + controller enhancement."

Build a Solar Dish Holder - These directions are for the Solar Sizzler solar cooker, but many of the techniques can be used for many parabolic dish stands.

Building your own generator (on the cheap)  - using a lawn mower engine and a GM car alternator with built in voltage regulator.

Ultra-simple Electric Generator - Very simple and more of a science project or hobby experience.

Pedal Powered Generator - If you're going to work out, may as well make some "juice" at the same time. Also, a good idea in an emergency to charge batteries, etc.

How to Make Your Own Biodiesel Fuel - Anybody can make biodiesel. It's easy, you can make it in your kitchen -- and it's better fuel than the petro-diesel the oil companies sell you.

Another Method for making Biodiesel Fuel -

Backyard Biodiesel - Another method for making biodiesel yourself. Good, step-by-step directions.

How to Install a Wood Burning Stove -

Five essentials to getting the most out of your woodpile -

Wood-Fired Cob Bread-Baking Oven - Picture tutorial of how to make a cob (earthen) oven for baking.

Making and Using a Solar Cooker - We have quite a few designs and resources for making a solar cooker, but this site also tells how to use one. 

How to Make a Great Looking Rain Barrel - A rain barrel doesn't have to be ugly. Here's a simple DIY guide to not only make a rain barrel, but to "camouflage" the barrel with good-looking vines. Note: Only buy "food qualtiy" barrels.

How to Make Stabilized Adobe Bricks -

How to Build a Pueblo Indian Mud House - While you may not want a home, if you live in the SW USA, maybe a mud dog house as a fun project for the family?

How to Make a Homemade Mosquito Trap - Plastic 2-liter bottle trap will work for wasps and horseflies too, just change the bait formula. (recipe on site)

How to Build a Duplicator - With some basic modifications, this simple device may let you really enhance our own assembly line.

Solar and Green Energy Resources

GreenPowerScience - From Dan and Denise Rojas. A terrific site specializing in plenty of DIY videos, projects and advice.

A wide variety of Concentrating Solar Collectors - Just browsing this page in a great way to brainstorm your own designs

Localized Energy Estimater - Solar and Wind calculator based on area code.

How to Build a Solar Powered Evap Cooler - A cool DIY project, complete with a plan and directions.

Learn more about Net-Metering

Renewable Energy Resource Data Center - Get Solar Maps and GIS Data

Solar Noon - This is an important concept when using solar power and sun tracking equipment.

The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon - The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon challenges 20 collegiate teams to design, build, and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient, and attractive. The winner of the competition is the team that best blends affordability, consumer appeal, and design excellence with optimal energy production and maximum efficiency.

The U.S. Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) has plenty of great resources to help you

Green Collar Research - Hundreds of White Papers on emerging green technology products and solutions. When you are investigating the types of products you should invest in, White Papers are critical. And we have more than anyone.

The Florida Solar Energy research project   - A project created to improve the effectivness and lower the cost of solar ovens to help people people in developing countries.

Home Power Magazine - Terrific online magazine with a good assortment of DIY, reviews and info. The paid membership is a great value.
Home - Lots of free articles and review.
Subscribe - $9.95 a year at the time I posted this.

Energy Planet - A visual and interactive web directory of information resources about renewable energy technology.

Parabolic calculator program - Freeware program helps you design solar collector or wifi projects using parabolic reflectors.

Reflective Materials Report - Study done on various reflective materials for use in solr ovens, based on cost, durability and reflectiveness.

Google Search for ultra high-efficiency silicon solar cells - Type of solar cells used with solar concentrators, such as parabolic mirrors and fresnel lenses

Green Energy Incentives and Opportunities

EERE State Incentives & Partnerships

Database of State Incentives, Grants and Rebates

Federal Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

Green Energy Jobs -


Solar Training and Certificates

Your local power company, and renewable energy associations may also have info available. Be sure to check with them also.

Boots On The Roof - solar installer training and workshops

HeatSpring Learning Institute - solar and geothermal installer training, certification and workshops

NPCP-IBEW - solar installer training

NECA Chapters - solar/electric installer training

Solar Living Institute - solar training, certification and workshops

Solar Energy International - solar training, certification and workshops

Rich Hessler Solar Sales Training - Includes the entire sales process and tech info. - Wind Energy Educational Programs


U.S. Government Renewable Energy-Efficiency Programs & Resources

"Here you will find news about advances in renewable energy and energy efficiency in your state and links to Web sites published by DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) that have specific information for your state. "



Habitat for Humanity ReStores

ReStores need to be on the list of any serious scalvager. Check out the ReStore nearest you:

Habitat For Humanity ReStores in the USA:

Alabama Illinois Missouri Pennsylvania
Alaska Indiana Montana Rhode Island
Arizona Iowa Nebraska South Carolina
Arkansas Kansas Nevada South Dakota
California Kentucky New Hampshire Tennessee
Colorado Louisiana New Jersey Texas
Connecticut Maine New Mexico Utah
Delaware Maryland New York Virginia
Florida Massachusetts North Carolina Washington
Georgia Michigan Ohio West Virginia
Hawaii Minnesota Oklahoma Wisconsin
Idaho Mississippi Oregon Wyoming

Habitat For Humanity ReStores in Canada:

British Columbia

New Brunswick
Nova Scotia

Prince Edward Island




Recycling Links

List of Electronics Recyclers by State -

Earth911 - Recycling Centers Search Engine


Help and Forums

Green Collar Economy - Ask the experts -

Hacked Gadgets Forum - A good place to talk about hacking and alternative uses for things.

GlobalSpecs forum - A great place to find tech help you may need while creating your next invention. The forum is hard to navigate, so I listed some of the forum's categies below, each taking you to a specific topid:
Electrical Engineering
New Tech
Sustainable Engineering

Electronics Lab Forum - Discussion, help and answers for electronics.

Nuts and Volts Forum -

Energetic Forum -  Discussion on various alternative energy, renewable energy, & free energy technologies.

Solar Panel Talk -

Solar Power Forum -


Survival Links

Animated Index of Scouting Knots - This site has a bunch of knots that "tie themselves" through the use of animation. This particular page focuses on knots scouts use, but the site has other categories of knots also, all animated.

How to Make Steel Knives -

How to Make a Hoko Knife - "a simple and practical stone bladed tool. The original Hoko knife was found at an archaeological site in western Washington near the Hoko River where a native village was snuffed out by a landslide about 2700 years ago, well before any contact with Europeans. Among the artifacts found there was a very simple knife consisting of a very small, sharp stone flake hafted in a split cedar handle which was tied together with spruce root."

California Knapping - Knapping is the art of making blades and axes from stone, a tremendous survival skill.

Amazon "wind up radios" - In a dissaster, you shouldn't depend on batteries.


Misc. Resources

African Clay Pot Refrigerator - A low-tech solution to using evaporation to keep food cool. Can you devolope something using this basic concept to cool your home? Maybe if you have well water, you can even recycle your water back to your well...


Termite Power - Did you know giant termite mounds in Africa maintain a constant temperature of about 72 degrees F? And they do it all by thermal dynamics of ventilation. This is a billion dollar idea if someone can reproduce how the termites do it:

Mid-rise building in Zimbabwe uses "termite theory"  to save tons of energy (and MONEY).

Hippo Rollers - Great idea that combines a wheelbarrow with water barrels to help african women transport drinking water.

Low Impact Cob "Hobbit House" - Here's a very cool home and a great example of how homes can be built for less money and using more nature friendly materials, and still be good looking. - Site dedicated to bioplastics.

eHow Guide to Weird DIY Projects - Collection of unique video "how to" guides for projects like how to make a squirt gun alarm clock, how to make a trip wire alarm, how to make a metal detector, how to make a solar charging bag, how to make a fog machine with a household iron and many more.

Boy's Life Collection of Weird Science Eperiments -

Popular Science Experiements - Another collection of videos showing off-the-wall projects.

Science Toy Maker - " teacher-created site for people who like to roll up their sleeves and make science toys and projects. You won't find slick, well-designed web pages here--more like the digital equivalent of a messy workshop."

Bizarre Stuff You Can Make In your Kitchen - An interesting site dedicated to easy and "unique" science projects

Alternatives to cellular communications in emergencies - "There are at least five communications systems that more or less meet these criteria. Some have big drawbacks, others minor ones. In making your choice, you should examine your own needs and match them with the appropriate system. "

Vertical Farms: A Sustainable Approach to Urban Agriculture - "A collection of infographics, research material and spontaneous thoughts on my current industrial design graduate thesis project"

The Flying Scrooge: Ornithopter of Household Items - A DIY for creating a small homemade ornithopter...Think of this ornithopter as a paper airplane that flaps its wings.

How to Make a Hoola Hoop - I plan on using this for something else when I get a chance, and added it here so I don't forget.


Top Renewable Energy Links:


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Cheap DIY Green Projects - Homepage

ShySky DIY Green Energy Blog - News and Updates

Guide to Cheap Solar Cells

Guide to Encapsulating Solar Paneles

DYI Solar Energy Projects
Sub topics:
Basic Thermal Dynamics
Physics of Reflection
Examples of "Industrial Strength" Parabolic Solar Mirrors
Do It Yourself Solar Parabolic Mirror Systems
Cloning Parabolic Shapes
Cloning Examples
Fresnel Lenses
Compact Linear Fresnel Reflector
Solar Ovens
How to Make a Solar Air Heater Using Pop Cans
Build Your Own Solar Panels
Making Your Panels More Efficient
Heliostats and Solar Trackers
Inflatable Solar Collectors - New Tech Breakthrough?
Solar Water Heaters

Batteries & Materials for Green Energy Projects
Sub topics:
Reconditioning Batteries
Materials and Equipment Used with Light and Reflection
Misc. Stuff
Make Your Own Plastic
How To Cast Custom Moulds
Working with Pop/Beer Cans
Kurt's Pop Can Evap Condenser
Large Liquid Containers
Homemade Pump and Seal

Stirling Engines for Green Power
Sub topics:
1000 New Millionaires Every Week? Intro to Sterling Engines
Engineering a Sterling Engine
Simple, Homemade Stirling Engines
Stirling Engines Hobby Kits

DIY Wind Power Projects
Sub topics:
Building a wind turbine consists of 6 main parts
How To Build Your Own Wind Turbine Alternator (Generator)
Do It Yourself Tips and Resources for Building Wind Turbines
Ideas for Turbines and Blades
10 ft. Axial Flux Wind Turbine User's Guide
Intro To Neodymium Magnet Levitation To Reduce Friction In An Vertical Axis Wind Turbine

Making Money with Renewable Energy
Sub topics:
Why Green for Making Money?
Testing the Waters Before Diving In
Importing Using
Joint Ventures
Micro Energy Companies and Power Purchase Agreements
Kurt's Coffee Mug Trick
Creative Financing Micro Loans and MFIs
A little inspiration
How to Get in the Door
Sell a Book on Amazon
Setting Up a Website for Your Business
Outsourcing Web Work

Scalvaging for Cheap Green Power Projects
Sub topics:
Intro to Scalvaging
Here's some good stuff to search for to get you started
Scalvaging Drills and Hardrives
Habitat for Humanity Scalvaging
More Scalvaging Resources

Survival Tips
Sub topics:
Basic Survival
Emergency food that you can pack and take with you
A Major Disaster
Pop can solar array
Lifeboat Survival: A Logic Problem
And here's some "creative" uses for stuff you may not have thought of

Cheap and Free Materials for Green Energy Projects: Tuelz Software
Sub topics:
Download your Sunny Money Tuelz here
Basic Download Directions for Tuelz
Video shows how to use Updatez to serious scalvage using Craiglist to find tons of free stuff
How to use the Newz Tuel

Favorite Green Energy Resources
Sub topics:
Batteries and Electricity
Links to all sorts of DIY resources
Solar and Green Energy Resources
Green Energy Incentives and Opportunities
Solar Training and Certificates
U.S. Government Renewable Energy-Efficiency Programs & Resources
Recycling Links
Help and Forums
Survival Resources
Misc. Resources