Your Questions About Solar Panel Kits

William asks…

Where Can I buy Solar Panel Kits?

I was looking to buy a solar panel for my home,and I need a good website that sells good information about this system,and maybe I can make it at my home?

ssadmin answers:

I found this web site that may answer your question: http://27eeb7x8yclqjivc09m8o-oa-5.hop.clickbank.net/ I plan on following up on the information in the next couple of weeks

Joseph asks…

Do you need a regulator to hook up a 5000 Watt Power Inverter to a Solar Panel?

I am thinking about buying a 5,000 Watt Continuous/10,000 Watt Peak Power inverter and a 45 Watt Solar Panel Kit, to use to run the lights and some utilities with, and I was wondering if I would need a regulator.

ssadmin answers:

A 45 watt panel kit is a long way short of the 5,000 watt inverter you are talking of. I have 16 panels that give 3,960 watts on a good day. Remember the sun don't shine when you need lights on so if you don't use the electric during the day then it is fed back into the system. You also have to have a certificate from the installers to get registered for the feed in tariff and as you probably know that reduces after 12th December 2011.
All the regulating is done by the inverter unit and will isolate the panels when the output drops to less then 100 watts

Helen asks…

solar panel kit help!!!?

im planning on buying this solar panel kit- http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CIADLG/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER (a 60 watt soar panel kit)
i am very new to the solar world and i need help with some stuff to understand what i need to do.
what AH battery should i use? i am planning on getting a 12V deep cycle gel based battery but i want to get the most power for my system so should i use something like a few 100AH in a battery bank system or a bunch or 50 or so amp hour batteries in a bank. also what kind of power am i looking at for the best battery system. in other words what kind of basic appliances like lighting, laptop,space heaters etc can can i run on the selected battery system and for how long? any help would be highly appreciated.

ssadmin answers:

60 watts isn't going to run a space heater for very long. That's 5 amperes at 12 volts maximum on a sunny day. You could charge a laptop and some LED lights.

Ruth asks…

solar panel battery size?

im planning on buying this solar panel kit- http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CIADLG/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER (a 60 watt soar panel kit)
i am very new to the solar world and i need help with some stuff to understand what i need to do.
what AH battery should i use? i am planning on getting a 12V deep cycle gel based battery but i want to get the most power for my system so should i use something like a few 100AH in a battery bank system or a bunch or 50 or so amp hour batteries in a bank. also what kind of power am i looking at for the best battery system. in other words what kind of basic appliances like lighting, laptop,space heaters etc can can i run on the selected battery system and for how long? any help would be highly appreciated.

ssadmin answers:

A 100 AH battery would be about the right size for a true 60-watt panel. However, I have a low opinion of those kits consisting of amorphous panels, such as the one in the link. The panels are heavily overrated compared to what they actually deliver, and do not last. It could still be a fun project.

If you want to pursue this from the fun perspective, I would go to Costco and get the cheapest, smallest 12V car battery I could find. Depending on where you live, you would be able to run a laptop for perhaps an hour, or a compact fluorescent for several hours. A space heater would be beyond the system's capabilities.

To get a serious system for similar money, shop for the panel separately. Look for a crystalline (not amorphous) silicon panel, with an STC (Standard Test Conditions) rating. That's like EPA mileage, standard across the industry. Other ratings are just based on the seller's opinion. If you were to go serious, you would get a 100 AH battery such as this http://www.theenergyconscious.com/sol3091.html . That's not the best price online, so do shop around.

Mary asks…

I'm Thinking Of Getting This Solar Panel Kit, Is It Feasible?

I would love to be able to produce electricity for my home in a safe and clean manner, for the sake of the environment AND for my rather challenged finances, but I really haven't got thousands to invest in the project.

I found this kit online, which seems to offer what I need for a VERY low price…. needless to say I'm suspicious.

So, anyone with knowledge of these things…. can you tell me if this just nonsense/a con, or does it look like a decent way forward for me?

http://www.homemadeenergy.org/?hop=cyprusmete

ssadmin answers:

Alright, first of all I do not think the site is a scam, but what they are telling you is not the whole story.
What they sell you is the basic concept of building a solar panel. They explain how to connect the solar cells, and fabricate a panel using basic supplies that you can purchase either at a hardware store or at Radio Shack. If you do some research on the internet you can find sites out there that provide this information for free.

As far as building the solar panel for $200. That is a relative price depending on what materials you are able to salvage. Your big expense is the solar cells themselves. Most likely what they are going to tell you is to look online for damaged, or second hand solar cells. Sometimes you can find them on Ebay, and there are numerous companies out there that sell bulk solar cells, both new and used. Damaged or used solar cells are cheaper, but require a lot more work to utilize, new is easiest, so you will pay accordingly.
The rest of the materials are pretty inexpensive. Plywood, plexiglas, silicone caulk, etc. The materials you need from Radio Shack cost about $20. For the initial investment, and the materials will last a good while. In a nutshell, if you use scrap lumber, and used solar cells you might be able to build a 100 watt panel for under $200. Maybe even less. If you really dig around, there are places where you can find damaged solar panels, that have been discarded, and you can tear them apart and recycle the solar cells.
Once you build the solar panel, you are only part way there. The panel is producing DC current, and your home runs on AC. The normal home set up would have the solar panels connected to a battery bank, so the panels keep the batteries charged, and the home runs off the batteries. Same problem, batteries are DC, your home AC.
You would need an adapter to change the DC to AC before you could hook up to your home. A DC converter will run you about $200. Normally. The big problem is this. When you convert from DC to AC you lose most of what you have generated. Here is an example:
A compact flourecent bulb is using about 40 watts of power, maybe a little less. Your solar panel is only producing 100 watts, so you will only be able to power two lights in the house, three at the most.
In order to run the lights, fans, radio, etc. You will need a roof full of solar panels. Nobody ever tells you this.
Here is a simple solution if you are really serious. The trick is to run part of your home straight DC. Then there is no need for a DC converter. You can get DC flourescents which only require about 4 watts of power. DC fans, are the same, they require very little DC current to operate. Basically anything you have in your home that runs on batteries, a laptop for instance, can handle the DC current.
You can have an electrician re-route some of the wiring in the house to your solar system. Lights, ceiling fans, and a few outlets for DC appliances. Eventually you could convert the entire home to DC, but just getting the lights and other smaller appliances on DC will same you a lot of money. With a DC system you only need a few solar panels to do the whole job, not a roof full.
You will still need a bank of batteries which are a little on the expensive side. If you are running DC however, you only need a few batteries to support the system, instead of 8-10 batteries. The batteries will need to be a deep cycle battery that are made to be recharged regularly. Car batteries do not work very well. The batteries you need are like the ones used in golf carts, fork lifts, etc. You can purchase reconditioned batteries at a reasonable price ($30-40 a piece) in most parts of the country, and usually they will give you a warranty if they are reputable.
Anyway, I tried not to be over detailed here, so I could keep this fairly short, so I hope you get the basic idea.

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