Whether you are trying to cut back on electricity use, want to be prepared for power outages, or are living off-grid, there are a lot of cool new devices that can make it happen.
All of the off-grid gadgets listed here do not require any electricity at all. Some are solar-powered but there are also some which are hand or pedal-powered too.
I’ve divided the off-grid gadgets up into categories by their purpose. If you know of any cool, useful gadgets which don’t require electricity, let us know in the comments section!
Off-Grid Kitchen Gadgets
A solar oven concentrates the sun’s heat, allowing you to slowly cook food. It’s possible to make your own but the one engineered by GoSun is particularly good.
Also see these 22 ways to cook without electricity.
Hand Pump Portable Espresso Machine
My husband got me this for my birthday and I love it. I take it on camping trips or when we are at our cabin. There are other ways of making coffee without electricity (French press, “cowboy coffee,” instant…) but this is the best solution for people who love espresso.
Hand Crank Mill
This hand-crank mill is pretty similar to what our grandparents would have used. It allows you to grind up grains into flour, make peanut butter, grind coffee beans, and much more. It’s a great item to have on hand if you are stockpiling emergency food.
I’ve made butter using a traditional wooden churn. This mini churner is a lot easier to use and clean afterward. Just make sure the cream is at room temperature before you start and you’ll get fresh butter in about 10-15 minutes of churning.
Hand Powered Food Chopper
This thing is wildly popular because it lets you chop up veggies quickly even when off-grid. Just pump the top and the blades start spinning.
Hygiene and Cleaning Gadgets
Pressurized Solar Shower
Most camping showers are pretty simple: just hang a bag of water overhead and gravity will force water out of a shower faucet. This one takes things up a notch because it has a foot pump that pressurizes the water. You can actually get a good stream of water coming from the showerhead. See more off-grid shower options.
Pedal Powered Camping Sink
This no-plumbing-necessary sink is great for long-term camping or cabins. Use biodegradable soap and collect the wash water in a bucket and you can use it for watering plants.
Off-Grid Clothes Washing Machine
If you’ve ever had to hand wash clothes in a bucket, then you know how inefficient it is. You end up all wet (which particularly sucks in winter), waste a lot of water rinsing, and your hands ache from rinsing.
Luckily there are some cool off-grid washing machines. They aren’t perfect but it’s a lot better than the bucket method!
You can also make a DIY clothes washer from buckets that work on a similar concept.
Other Off-Grid Gadgets
Treadle Sewing Machine
If you want an off-grid sewing machine, you might consider fixing up an old one you find in an antique store. Not only is that sometimes challenging, but those old sewing machines don’t have many options for stitch types.
With this sewing machine, you get the best of both worlds. It connects with a treadle sewing table but acts just like any modern sewing machine – just without needing any electricity.
Solar Powered Fan
Power outages are even more likely to occur during heat waves, which could leave you sweltering or even cause heatstroke. This portable fan connects to a solar panel so you can cool down even without power. You could also get any of these great portable solar panels and use them with a USB fan.
Hand Crank Generator
When it comes to hand-crank generators, this is probably the most efficient and reliable you’ll find. It’s also one of the only ones capable of charging high-wattage devices like laptops (most only charge up to 10watt devices). The housing is really tough and can take a beating.
If you’d rather pedal instead of crank, this bike generator will charge 12V batteries. Just hook it up to your battery or power station, put your bicycle on a stand, set the generator under the wheel, and start riding.
There are other pedal generators but this one has a great display that shows you how much power you are producing.
Have you started using any off grid gadgets or appliances? Let us know in the comments.