Your Questions About Solar Powered Generator

Mandy asks…

How many solar panels with one wind generator would you need to power a pop up?

I am looking at buying a pop up and would like to make it run off of deep cycle batteries but charging these batteries I would like to use a combination of solar panels and 1 wind generator. How many batteries would I need how many solar panels and what wind generator should I buy. I would be powering the lights an fridge and sometimes a AC or Heater.

Thanks
I live in west Texas where it never rains and its always windy

ssadmin answers:

Hope it's not cloudy without wind for a while, you'll be left with warm food and darkness.

An air conditioner/heater would be such a huge load on the system, wind/solar most likely don't make sense for an individual, unless you're on a lake or in California where it's sunny everyday.

You would need around 200 W for a fridge, 100 W for small lights, and….500 W (?) for heating/air….so you're looking at some pretty big batteries!! Every 2 hours you will use at least 1.5 kWh of energy.

Susan asks…

Where can I find the best plans for making a solar generator capable of powering large…?

…appliances and electronics?
Plans must be available free online.

ssadmin answers:

Using parts easily available from your local stores, you can make a solar power generator. Great for power failures and life outside the power grid. Have one in the office store-room in case of power failures in your highrise.

1. Buy yourself a small solar panel (25W or 40W).

2. Get the biggest deep-cycle 12-volt sealed gel-battery.

3. Get a battery box to put it in. (This is good for covering up the exposed terminals.)

4. To run AC appliances, invest in an inverter. This will convert the stored DC power in the battery into AC power for your household appliances. Count up the number of watts you'll be using (Eg. A small color television = 60 watts with a VCR = 22 watts, you'll need 82 watts).

5. Use insulated wire to attach the meter to the wingnut terminals on the battery. Connect the negative (-) pole first. Only handle one wire at a time.

6. Put the solar panel in the sun. It takes 5-8 hours to charge a dead battery; 1-3 hours to top-off a weak one. It will run radios, fans, and small wattage lights all night, or give you about 5 hours of continuous use at 115 volt AC.

Human Power Generator

The Human Power Generator is small, portable, and can be pedaled or cranked by hand to charge 12-volt batteries. The typical average continuous power that can be generated by pedaling the Human Power Generator is up to about 80 watts

William asks…

Question About Solar Energy For My Home?

Hello I am looking into purchasing a solar power generator for my home. I want to prepare for a time if electricity were to ever be cut off from my house.

I'm not trying to power my whole house, just two freezers located in my garage to keep the food frozen at night. I would also like to be able to charge a laptop, use a radio, and charge flashlights. Not all at the same time of course.

So my question is what solar power system would suit my needs. I am also under a budget. Thank you guys

ssadmin answers:

The freezers will use 99.5% of what you are asking ( charge a laptop = .5% )

You need to go look at the data plate of the freezer. It will say something like Volts ( 120 ) Amps ( 14 ) Watts ( 1680 ) Watts = Volts x Amps ) .

You need to figure how many hours a day the freezer runs.

You only get about 3-5 usable hours a day of sunlight at best no matter where you are.

Say you need 3 hours run time on the freezer. 3 x 1680 = 5,000 watts a day. 2 freezers, 10,000 W

a 150 Watt panel gives 450 watts a day.

Each panel costs 400-600 dollars.

You need 10 of them

You need batteries to store the charge and then an inverter to take 12v to 120 volts to run things..

The short answer to all those complex calculations is:

around $8,000 to run the freezers.

Linda asks…

What's the simplest way to hook up a small generator to a home's power grid?

I've search the internet extensively and haven't found an answer to this question.

I just wanted to play with solar panels and human powered generators and couldn't figure out the simplest and cheapest way to hook it into my house to get some benefit out of it.

I.E. can i just have my panel hooked into a charge controller and a single battery to act as a float and then an inverter and hook the output from the inverter into a standard power plug in the house? can i push power into a power outlet or is there some system so that power can only come out of the plug?

anyone have any ideas on the easiest simplest way to hook up a panel or a car alternator? I was going to turn my indoor bicycle into a generator by hooking up a car alternator to it… how could i most simply hook this into the house?

ssadmin answers:

You can put power into a plug, just be sure to shut your main breaker off first. And shut off breakers for high draw appliances like AC oven microwave waterheater etc.. When my power goes out I unplug my dryer and plug in a whip that I made that plugs into my generator. If you want to power the whole house you will need to use a 240v recept like for an electric dryer, if you use a standard 120v recept you will only power up one bus bar / half your house.

Yes 12v with an inverter will work, yes you can put an inverter on your car battery and power your house with your running car I suggest getting a deep cycle gel type battery in your vehicle if you want to do that, you should also upgrade to a 200a alternator if you're going with an inverter larger than 2500watts, a car won't be near as fuel efficient as a standard generator though, and it won't put out near the wattage. But like I said before, if it's only a 120v inverter you're only going to power up half the house

Donald asks…

What is a good solar generator to power a computer, TV, and other small items?

My family and I will be moving into a loft in January. Our loft will be on the top floor and I am interested in getting a solar panel to help generate power for the computer, TV, and a few smaller items. I was wondering what is a good solar panel to purchase? I am looking for a panel that is both inexpensive and can generate enough power for the items I want it for. If you want more information, I can provide some.
I understand that I won't be able to run a TV or computer only using solar energy, but using a combination of solar energy and utilities would help, right?

ssadmin answers:

Let's see, a desktop computer typycally has a 500W power supply at 65% efficiency, a typical CRT TV uses 300W so to run those two, you should provide at least (500)/0.65+300 or 1,070 W of photovoltaic cells. The cells are rated by maximum power output in full sunlight so assume you'r only get 63% so that means you'll want 1700W solar panels. At $10 a watt installed, you're looking at $17,000 worth of photovoltaics. Of course you can reduce this amount by taking into account how much of the day you actually use the computer, and TV for, selling the power to the grid when you don't need it and buying it back at the higher power rate when you do but basically, it's going to be expensive.

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