Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Starting A Solar Power System

OK. You have heard all about solar power and alternative energy. You want to get started but don't know how or rather how not to do the wrong thing.
The first problem is cost - solar panels, solar controllers, batteries.

Solar Panels - monocrystalline, multi crystalline, amorphous. Panels vary from 1 watt to 180 watt cost from $10 to $2000

Solar Controllers - 12 volt to 48 volts 3 watts to 60 watts. Cost from $100 to $1000

Batteries - Flooded cells, Agm or Gel. Cost varies from $50 to $25,000

There are many uses for solar power some are the garden variety and small panels sold as top up's for batteries. Here I will concentrate on solar power that you can use in your motor homes or homes for lighting and power.

The most cost effective system

Panels - 40 watt amorphous is the most cost effective from a cost per watt basis. $395
Amorphous panels are resistant to shadows and work well in low light. These panels also easily fit into a larger grid system when you want to increase your power generation. Produces 240 watt a day.

Controllers - The Leonics 1206 is the best to use for a small maximum 2 panel system. $195

Batteries - Your standard car batteries are not suitable for solar power, however even a small 85 ah deep cycle battery can set you back $350. The good news is that a reconditioned 85 ah deep cycle battery can be purchased from the battery clinic for as little as $95 and it will work just as good.

OK there you have it a small solar system that you can use in the mobile home a batch or even in the home. Enough power is generated a day to light up 6 X 20 watt bulbs for 2 hours.

This solar streetlight is powered from 1 panel and is enough to light up a 20 watt bulb for 10 hours a day. The battery has enough storage for 3 days.

See for more information

This is a quick start to producing solar power and it is a system that can be expanded easily.

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