How to Build an Off Grid Cabin

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Building your own cabin is challenging, building an off grid cabin is even more challenging. You need basic carpentry skills and an understanding of off grid options. Property selection includes land that has the natural resources you need to provide power and water. Solar and hydro-power are typical off grid power sources. The amount of materials needed will vary depending on the size of the cabin you build. If you have purchased a kit, all materials will be included.

Things You'll Need

  • Building plans
  • Solar power system
  • Lumber
  • Concrete
  • Saw
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Obtain building permits before beginning. This requires going to your local county office and presenting your building plans. You can use plans that you purchase from a catalog or from an online company.

  • Select the area on your property that will provide optimal sun light and is close to a natural water source, such as a spring or year round stream. Clear the land. You can rent your own equipment or hire an excavating company.

  • Build the foundation for the cabin. Dig below the frost line (the depth which frost penetrates the ground). Install footing before mixing and pouring concrete. The weather needs to be dry and cool when pouring concrete so that it sets evenly.

  • Construct the cabin frame according to the plans you have purchased. Install solar panel system and electrical wiring before completing the interior walls and ceiling.

Tips & Warnings

  • Determine how often and how long you will be staying in the cabin. This will help you decide which off grid method of power will be best suited for your needs.
  • For long term use, consider installing rain water collection and water purification systems.
  • Use safety equipment such as goggles and work gloves during construction.

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