-Skystream is a manufacturer of home wind turbine kits.
This type of kit is a great way to partially or completely power your home. It is unlikely that you can get away with using one wind turbine to take care of the whole load at your house. It is completely realistic to expect to be able to power 1/3 of your home with a wind turbine. The rest, you can either use solar or power from the grid.
The Skystream 3.7 kit is a horizontal-axis wind generator. These generators need to be mounted 30 feet above the tree line in order to get the best wind. Theoretically, you can mount this type of wind turbine on your roof. But, then you can damage to your roof. Also, by mounting on the roof, your wind is typically more turbulent, so it is difficult to maximize electricity production.
The big question is, how much does it cost to buy and build a kit like this?
The kit itself is about $14,000 installed for their smaller version - the 2.4 kW model. The basic unit will come with the basic components to make power for your home unless you specify otherwise. Rotor/hub, generator, and inverter. Since mounting is largely personal preference, you will need to supply the tower.
Although you will have all the parts necessary to make electricity, it is wise to get others involved to mount the system and make the final tie-in with your home's electricity grid. An experienced mechanical contractor can handle the installation of the windmill on the tower and an electrical contractor can do the final tie-in.
A very strong current incentive to get a Skytream or any other wind turbine for your home is the 30% federal tax credit available. The great thing about a credit is it comes right off your tax bill - not like a deduction which just reduces taxable income.
On a scale of 1-10, how difficult is the Skystream wind turbine to put together and install?
If you are handy around the house with other projects, you won't have a problem putting the Skystream kit together. You need to make sure you get help with the installation.
A wind turbine kit itself is a very reasonable thing for the average do it yourselfer.
How can you mess things up with your Skystream?
The biggest mistake folks make is trying to do the whole installation. That is a tall order unless you are a combination mechanical contractor and electrician.
Contact Skystream and talk to the closest dealer about how best to get your kit installed.
What makes Skystream wind turbines different than competing products?
For starters, a very aesthetically pleasing design - very futuristic.
The real difference is all the components are put together in the turbine housing.
Who are their key competitors?
WindEnergy7 and Windspot are two manufacturer that have a large share of the market.
Skystream units have been chosen by a number of schools as part of the government's "Wind for America" program.
No matter which home wind turbine you buy, be careful on the front end and do your homework carefully. All wind is not created equal.
Check government wind resource maps, then, drill-down to your local community and check with your local weather office or TV station for information about average winds over time - you want to make sure you have enough wind to justify the upfront cost.
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