Rob's Ramblings...

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Welcome to my Web Page. Come in and browse around. Have a look at the Site Aims before proceeding too much further. If you notice any glaring errors, have suggestions on how the information could be presented in a clearer way, don't understand something or would like to have a look at what I've done please email me.


Setting the scene

I live in a 3 bedroom brick veneer house in Rooty Hill, an outer western suburb of Sydney.

My house
In some ways, it's your average 50 year old house in the 'burbs.....

Me and my crowded roof
In other ways, it's a little different.

Click here to see a more detailed description of the house, and some of the challenges I have to conquer...


Power to the People

Three of the House-Roof mounted PV Panels

Grid Interactive Inverter Electrical Baord

Grid Interactive Photovoltaic System

A Grid-Interactive Photovoltaic (PV) system generates electricity from sunlight, and feeds it either back into the house or to the electricity grid to be used by neighbouring houses.

Household Appliances Household Appliances Household Appliances Household Appliances

Power Consumption

Want to know which appliances gobble up all the electricity? Or how to reduce the amount of power they're consuming? I look at some different methods for calculating consumption and describe some ways I've managed to reduce the amount that I use.

Household Power Summary : A monthly breakdown of the amount of energy produced and consumed in the house.


Full of Hot Air

Sun Lizard Solar Air Heater SunLizard Solar Air Heater/Cooler Sun Lizard Solar Air Heater / Cooler on my roof
On sunny days in the cooler months of the year, the SunLizard warms up the air in the living area of the house. During the warmer months, it can be set to vent warm air from the living area to outside.


All tanked up...                       ...and getting into Hot Water

2000 Litre Water Tank used for the garden

350 Litre water tank used for drinking water

Water Tanks

There are two water tanks installed in the yard - One 2300 litre tank to supplement the gardening water, and a 350 litre tank with internal diverter and external carbon filter for drinking water.

Solahart Solar Hot Water System
Solar Hot Water System

About 90% of the hot water used in the house is directly heated by the sun in the Solahart Solar Hot Water System. The other 10% is provided by the electric booster which switches on when the water gets too cool.


Cycling Capers Double Trouble

Camwest community bike ride

A more sustainable form of transport than the four wheeled fossil fuel munchers.

Nurra & Gingy, two of the ducks I used to have
Muscovy Ducks

In the past, a fair chunk of the front yard was inhabited by a varying number of Muscovy Ducks. Unfortunately, the three remaining adult ducks 'disappeared' one by one over a 10 day period (with no feathers left lying around, which suggests that the thief probably wasn't of the four legged variety).


Sustainable House Day, 2nd weekend in September My house has been one of a dozen or so open to the public in the Sydney area on Sustainable House Day (originally called Solar House Day) for the last few years. This event normally takes place over the 2nd weekend in September. My house and several others in Western Sydney are expecting to be open on Saturday September 8th 2007. A complete list of all open houses and ticket prices will be posted on in the week before the event.


Press Articles:
  • "How Rob saw the light" article on Page 3 of the Blacktown Sun, 15th of August 2006 [File Size: 120 kb]
  • "Solar in the Suburbs" article on Pg 64 of ReNew Magazine, Issue 88 (July-Sept 2004)
  • "The Powerhouse" article on Pg 4 of The Sydney Morning Herald's 'Eco' supplement, 3rd of June, 2004 [File Size: 175 kb]
  • "New Technology" article on Pg 8 of Sydney's Daily Telegraph 'Home' supplement, 20th March, 2004 [File Size: 180 kb]
  • "Green House" article on pg 11 of the Mt Druitt/St Marys Standard, on the 25th Feb 2004 [File Size: 73 kb]


' I used to listen to the odd bit of head-banging music. Now I just use computers.

Last Updated: 24/02/07
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