THe Wattshop - Alternative Power - Solar Panels, Hydro, Wind Turbines, diesel generators - supply and installation
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Welcome to the Wattshop

We are not a power company, but we do make power! The Wattshop is about people generating their own power, where it is needed, OFF-GRID.

We can also do GRID TIED installations for those that are on the grid

We sell alternative power compnents (deep cycle batteries, inverters, monitoring & metering equipment) plus design & install alternative power systems (solar energy, wind turbines, hydro trurbines, gernerators) so you can make your own watts! 

See our page for people who are just getting started: More than just FAQ

To contact us hit the "contact" tab on the upper right or email us on

This site's primary focus is to be more about how to set up, run, and maintain a system, rather than a purely sales-oriented site. We would like to provide an insight as to how you can create renewable energy at your home by using our own experiences and those of others we know off-grid.
Have a look at our favorite alternative power equipment and alternative power system options.

When we are employed to install equipment, the installation is carried out by N.Z. Registered Electrician/s and other Tradespersons.

I am now into my 12th year living with alternative power in Kaeo, Northland, N.Z. I feel this helps give me a better insight into actually living without the mains than other sellers of alternative power equipment who go home at the end of the day to a grid powered house. Its still a buzz for me to make an espresso with solar generated power!




Find out about this brilliant application for solar (PV) panels. We can pump from remote bores, creeks, ponds, streams,  or basically any source of water. Batteries not included nor required!   Click here


fantastic for the planet, the grid, society in general. My thoughts on this topic, why it should be happening, and why it has not until recently!

Click here





We supply all types of alternative energy equipment, including:

After surfing here we hope to give you some ideas as to what it is you really need in a power system, and what:

  • Size of system will suit your needs,
  • Type of system that you wish to construct given the geography and other features of your site (eg: Solar panel power system, wind turbine for windy sites, possibility of hydro power option).
  • Degree of sophistication i.e. automation is required.

The intention of this site is to take some of the mystery out of "Alternative Power"

What I'm hoping to do is to share our experiences with the design and use of a home power generating system. I'm sure that people fully involved in the design of their energy source will enjoy the experience a whole lot more and gain a better understanding of whats going on and confidence in the running of their system.

Of course, if you simply want power at the flick of a switch with your only involvement being the filling of a fuel tank, this can be easily accomplished with today's modern equipment, but of course, the costs rise with this approach.

Most of the extra expense is incurred with the autostart generator with engine monitoring. The inverter/chargers we most often sell have the necessary smarts to provide a start/stop signal for the generator built in as a standard feature. However additional equipment is still required.

Some advantages of making your own power

  • You can live where you want! High on a mountain, on an island, the middle of the bush. The power supply can be eliminated from the practical constraints list. We simply could not have afforded to put grid power on where we live. Not that I really care, it was a great excuse to tinker with stuff I had always wanted to play with ;-)
  • Everyone I have met making their own electricity derives a certain satisfaction out of the independence gained.
  • Power cuts need not happen with a well designed /maintained alternative power system anywhere near as often as on the grid, especially in rural areas.

Is alternative power reliable?

Sure electronics does fail from time to time AND mechanical prime movers (wind / hydro turbines & engines are examples of prime movers) will wear and need maintenance. Failures are unusual, and a flexible system (see alternative power system types for some ideas) can make outages nonexistent, or at least rare & short. In a well designed system, a problem can be easily dealt with by its owners.

Why you can feel good about building an alternative power system using renewable sources of energy

Buying renewable alternative power technology is aiding research into better equipment which in the future will become more mainstream. We are helping the environment. In 2003 renewable energy saved 53 million tons of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere. How many batteries have been stopped from becoming land fill simply by putting tiny solar cells in calculators? The use of renewable energy can help prevent the need for undesirable types of power generation.

By producing as much of your own energy as possible with renewable resources you are lessening the impact of your existence, your "environmental footprint" on the planet and thereby aiding the well being of future generations. Carbon emissions and use of fossil fuel are being reduced by solar PV panel and solar hot water panel installations around the world. I can't be absolutely sure whether humans are responsable for global warming, there is so much conflicting evidence. However I do think  research into alternatives to fossil fuels is a great idea no matter what the motivation is. Also I think we should try and reduce greenhouse emmissions just in case it is us.

Please click here to read our electrical safety mesage
  :-) Have a nice day!  
Copyright The Wattshop 2007.

The Watt Shop - Alternative Power  |   PO Box 342, Kaeo, Northland, New Zealand  |   Phone 021 784 678

This website was created and is maintained by using solar power!
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