You see a lot of tips and tutorials these days on various websites and social media about how to create your very own bicycle or pedal-powered generators to generate electricity during an emergency power outage, but are these pedal-powered generators really a good idea for a prepper or survivalist? Should these pedal-powered generators be central or even a small part of your preparedness or survival plan? Well, we are about to lay out a case for why we think these are actually a terrible option for preppers and survivalists for their power generation preps.
Sure, in a pinch one of these pedal-powered power generators would be better than nothing at all, but isn't the point of being a prepper or survivalist to actually be prepared as well as you can be? Sure it is. And we would simply argue that preparing for your energy needs with a pedal-powered generator would not be nearly as effective as preparing to generate power with solar panels, wind turbines or hydro power (assuming you have a suitable water source/supply to sustain hydro power).
In a survival situation, your physical energy is going to prove a critical resource that you will need to leverage for all sorts of tasks, and this physical energy is going to be a finite resource. During a crisis, it is likely that you are going to demand a whole lot more from your body in ways that you are not normally accustomed to, and your caloric intake is quite possibly going to be significantly less than it normally is.
Time is another precious resource during a crisis. You need to spend your time, much like your physical energy, very wisely during a crisis. The last thing you need is to dedicate these two precious resources toward pedaling away on a stationary bicycle to generate power when you could be doing other far more important tasks.
Active Power Generation vs. Passive Power Generation
Here's the important distinction that we want to impart to you regarding the two categories of alternative energy production on this front: active power generation vs. passive power generation. Active power generation methods require direct involvement with the power generation by a user in terms of physical exertion and time. Passive power generation methods do not. Bicycle, pedal-powered and even hand-crank flashlights and radios fall into the active power generation category while solar panels, wind turbines and micro-hydro power fall into the passive power generation category. That means solar panels, wind turbines and hydro generators do all of the work for you while you are spending precious time and energy doing other things. Maybe even resting!!
So there you go. That is our case for why we think pedal-power generators are a terrible idea as a prep for your energy needs.
What do you think? Still think pedal generators are a good idea? Share your thoughts and comments!