“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery”
― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield
Everybody’s on a budget it’s just baked into how we live in a consumerist society, While Jeff Bezos might be rich enough to have his own space program he’s still constrained by what he can or can’t afford just like you or me. The same goes for that couple on the $750K condomaran who anchored too close to you that time or that guy sailing the Bristol 24. We’re all on a budget and most of us are spending more than we can afford.
The other day while making water, I found myself being annoyed by the noise level of the high-pressure pump combined with the generator. Truth is, I’m always annoyed by the noise level of my water-making process. Of course, making water is a brute-force endeavor and a certain amount of decibels is just part of it.
As it happens, the next morning Renogy dropped me a note mentioning that they had a new inverter and it was on sale. The first thought that came to mind was that it was powerful enough to handle the high-pressure pump and wouldn’t it be nice to run the watermaker from 12 volts.
My knee-jerk thoughts on the subject were that I’d need at least a couple more batteries but needed to check how much the inverter would suck out of the batteries and guessed maybe 100 amps. Which would have worked out. Looking further into the subject and consulting with the helpful folks at Renogy, I was informed that it would be like 250 amps… Ouch!
Of course, by this time, I really really wanted a quieter watermaker situation and now found myself pricing not only additional batteries but a 12V pressure pump to sort out my energy budget to attain a few fewer decibels.
All of a sudden I went from a new inverter with the addition of a couple more golf cart batteries to a whole new watermaker and while my budget would be OK with the inverter and batteries it was not OK with a new pressure pump and even more batteries…
The bottom line is that our current watermaker setup produces a week’s worth of water for just under a dollar of gasoline. Going to 12 volts would be less efficient, screw up my energy budget all to hell and seriously impact my monetary budget big time.
Luckily for me, I have basic math skills and I’m not big on denial so I can deal with my budget in a realistic way and decide that, for the moment at least, the watermaker works, produces water for little money, and I can deal with a bit of annoyance for a couple of hours a week. Which keeps both the energy and monetary budgets doing the happy dance.
Even better, the budget still has room for a pair of noise-canceling headphones…