One of the things we've been doing in the lead-up to winter is making our heating system more efficient, starting off with a new heat exchanger.
A generator makes a great backup for your electrical system. It will convert a number of fuels into electricity for those cloudy, windless days.
As organic materials compost, heat is formed. You can use this energy as a form of heating water or a room.
Wood is one of the oldest fuels for heat and cooking. If you have it locally available, it can be an invaluable source of energy for your homestead, even as a source of electricity.
Once you have figured out what source your electricity has come from, you will need to figure out how to store it.
It is important to include electronic controls for your home energy system. Electricity coming from the source should be regulated against overcharging your batteries, and your appliances should be guarded from overuse.
Photovoltaic energy is electricity that is produced by cells than convert the energy in sunlight into electricity. These are the solar panels we all know about and see in many forms.
Parts can be hard to find at times. If you have something that might work, test it out. If it does work, let us know, so that we can tell others about it.