Top-quality yet low-cost solar panel kits for homes are incredibly hard to find these daysâ?¦so are you going to throw in the towel, or keep on searching?
Solar panels are very expensive to purchase and if youâ??re on a tight budget, then go for the DIY approach!
Now, various solar panel kits for homes are being peddled online, but they are mostly rubbish! Just a few weeks back, I purchased a copy of DIY guide and let me tell you somethingâ?¦
It was 90 percent filler information! There was no panel construction plans, the assembling instructions were vague, materials sourcing information was inadequate â?? it was practically useless for a beginner like me!
So what did I do next?
First I requested for a refund and then, I proceeded to scour a few home improvement message boards to acquire more info about solar panel kits for homes.
Hereâ??s what I found outâ?¦
Okay it turns out that most tight budget beginners constructed their own solar panels thru the aid of step-by-step videos!
Of course in the beginning, the assembling process can be a bit tricky for us amateurs hence the need for step-by-step videos.
So I downloaded several how to videos onto my PC and followed each step â?? putting the materials together, assembling, wiring, soldering etc, one at a time.
Lo and beholdâ?¦
I successful build my first panel! Indeed it was quite tricky at first but we need not worry too much. Just view each process shown in the videos and perform one step at a time!
The experience was truly satisfying as Iâ??ve now discovered how to build those solar panel kits for homes using low-cost materials such as UV coating, plywood panel, primer, blocking diodes, flux paste, Plexiglass and of courseâ?¦solar cells!
After researching for God knows how many hoursâ?¦I came upon a solid instruction that actually walks me through all the necessary steps. Before long, I have my own solar panel system built from scratch!
If you want to know how to build a solar panel for your home then you need to know what you need. The 3 things you will need are your materials, tools, and a guide. To really know how to build a panel for your home you will need to know what you will need.
How to Build a Solar Panel for Your Home- Materials The materials to make your panels can be very inexpensive. Many people have gotten all of the materials for far under $100. Some of these are copper wires, plexiglass, and plywood. The only things you would need to go to the store to buy are solar cells and UV protective varnish.
How to Build a Solar Panel for Your Home- Tools Having your tools is the most important part of building your own panels and without them the materials would be useless. 3 of these are a drilling machine, cutters, and a screwdriver. To get these tools you can go borrow them from a friend or you can go to a pawn shop for more expensive ones.
How to Build a Solar Panel for Your Home- Guide To really be successful when you are building your own panel you will need a good guide. The best ones will show you how to build one step-by-step using videos. They will also teach you how to make panels that will cost under $100. This will save you thousands of dollars instead of buying one and it will save you money on your electric bill every month.
The easiest way to learn how to build a solar panel is by taking a look at how to assemble major components together. Today, you’re in for a treat. Because this article shows you how, so you too can build for yourself a solar power generator that can send power to your appliances.
Connecting the Solar Cells
Each solar cell produces half a volt. To get eighteen volts, you have to join thirty-six solar cells in series. You should always make calculations to ensure that power generated by your solar panel is sufficient. Otherwise you will have to connect more cells in parallel so you can have enough voltage and current.
The reason we need an eighteen-volt output from the solar generator is because this is what’s necessary to charge a twelve-volt battery. A twelve-volt supply is not sufficient to charge a twelve-volt battery.
Constructing the Panel Frame
Next, we have to create the frame. This is a simple box for the photovoltaic cells to sit in. The borders of the box should be three-quarters of an inch wide and should not be too high. Otherwise sunlight will not be able to reach some of the photovoltaic cells (at the sides) when the sun shines from an angle. This will lower the overall efficiency of the panel as some photovoltaic cells will not receive full solar radiation.
Putting the Array of Cells Into The Solar Panel Frame
To get the solar cells into the frame, glue the array of solar cells onto a thin, rigid backing before placing it into the “box”. An example of a thin, rigid backing is a Masonite board.
We need to give the rigid backing (substrate) a few coats of paint before pasting the photovoltaic cells on. We must also apply a few coats of paint to the panel frame and dry it thoroughly before putting in the array of solar cells.
Connecting the Diode
You can place the diode inside the solar panel and hold it firmly with some silicone so it won’t move about. Remember to allow some slack in the cable so they will not be strained and start pulling on the components.
Covering with Plexiglass
Before you cover the solar frame with plexiglass, test the solar panel’s voltage and power output. Then carefully attach the plexiglass onto the solar panel frame using screws.
Attaching the Jones Plug
Finally, you have to solder a Jones plug to the end of the wires that come out of the panel. This completes your solar generator.
After hooking up the different parts in the above manner, you have made for yourself a solar power generator that can supply renewable energy to your appliances that run on twelve-volt direct current.
Buying solar panels from the market is expensive. It may cost about $10,000 for a small set up that can provide electricity to a house that consumes average of 300 watts power everyday. This set up is too costly for a family.
There is second option also. Build your own solar panel. It is easy.
Solar panel is in fact a shallow box so that the sides of it does not shades the cells when the sun in not overhead. Take the size of it to be 3/8 inch plywood having edges of ¾ x ¾ pieces of wood. Glue the pieces and screw them well. This solar panel is capable of holding 36 3×6 inch cells.
Drill tiny holes at the wall edges. These holes keep air pressure inside the panel by equalizing with outside. It also allows moisture to escape. Make sure these holes to be at bottom otherwise rain or dew may get inside. At the centre divider drill vent holes.
To avoid critters or dusts, stuff inside the some holes fiberglass insulations. The center divider holes don’t require insulation.
After doing this cut 2 pieces masonite peg-board and fit it inside the wells. This boards are substrates to the sub-panel.
Give plexiglass front to the panel in order to protect it from the weather. Even glass can be used instead of plexiglass, but keep in mind that glass is fragile.
To check the quality of it, just hail flying debris and stones on it that can shatter glass, but this will bounce back of plexiglass. Give several coats of paint to the panels so that it can protect the panels from moisture and weather. Also paint the peg-board pieces on both sides. So, now you can start with fitting it. The panels are ready.
Are you ready to make homemade solar panel?
One thing you need to remember is that building homemade solar panel is quite simple and doesn’t require extensive technical know-how.
Okay, here’s a basic 6 step blueprint to make homemade solar panel which I learned from viewing step-by-step video tutorials downloaded to my computer hard drive.
Head over to your nearest hardware store and acquire the following items:
1) Blocking diodes
2) Copper wires
3) One sheet of Plexiglass
4) Plywood Panel
5) Silicone Sealant
6) Solar cells
7) Solder and soldering pen
8) Stainless steel screws
9) UV coating paint
10) Wood to form panel border
My total cost: $206
1) Cut up the plywood according to the amount of solar cells you have in possession. To generate say 100 watts of power, you’ll need about 80 solar cells. Build and combine multiple panels if you require more power.
2) Paint the plywood panel with UV coating paint. Once done, you can start joining the solar cells together. Place all the cells on the ground and using the soldering pen, drop very little amount of solder onto the small tabs found at the back of each solar cell.
3) The solder applied on the tabs allows you to link all the cells together with the copper wire. The top of the soldered tab is where you put the wire and to make it stick, just press it down until the solder cools off. .
4) Now what do you see across the back of the solar cells? Two lines of copper wire! The setup goes like this: The negative end of the wire goes to the negative slot and positive enters the positive slot.
5) Time to link up the cells! Arrange the wiring in such way that the negative wires are unable to come into touch with the positive wires.
6) Drill 2 holes to get the wire out of the back of the plywood panel, add the wood to form a border around the cells, screw from the back and finally with the silicone sealant in hand put the Plexiglass sheet on top of the panel.
Keep in mind that, if you watch step-by-step video tutorials like I have, then it will be a whole lot easier to make homemade solar panel!
Learning how to make a solar panel from scratch is a fun and you even donâ??t need to have any extra skills for that. This article will give you a very brief yet clear DIY guide on building a solar panel from scratch, i.e. things that are of no use to you rather than throwing it to the dust bin or those things that are valuable yet find no use right now.Â So get ready to learn something new today by spending a few minutes in reading this article.
Well, the required items are only things that are in and around your household and you need not take pains to buy something new for making a solar panel here.Â The necessary items required are listed below;
Screwdriver A wood saw.Â (An electronic wood saw shall be preferred rather than a hand saw) Soldering gun Drilling machine Copper wires Cutter for cutting wires. Paint brush. Electrical Solder Sheet of plexiglass. Silicon caulk. Rosin flux pen.
These were some of the items you need necessarily to make full use of the scratch items which are to be used to build a solar panel.Â The scratch items that are going to be used are listed below;
Plywood of considerable length and width Tin wires
However there are certain items that have to be bought from a hardware shop.Â They are solar cells and UV protective varnish.Â But even this can be avoided if you had used a solar panel already.
Cut the plywood in dimensions that could accommodate all the solar cells and paint the cut plywood with UV protective varnish. Connect each cell to each other using wires and soldering them.Â But before that make sure to apply flux to all the connector strips in cells using the Rosin flux pen. Attach these cells to the plywood using silicon caulk dabs. Make sure to accommodate holes for the two wires that have to be pulled from the last solar cell. Once the wires have been fed through these holes it is of utmost importance that you seal it using silicon beads. The next step is to drill holes in the plexiglass to accommodate screws through them. Build a frame to support the plexiglass. With the help of silicon and screws attach the plexiglass frame to the plywood containing the solar cells. Thus your solar panel is ready.Â Make sure that you have assembled all parts carefully.
Alright fellow beginners, if youâ??re planning to put together your very own DIY solar panel kits, then please take note of the mistakes outlined below.
I made these mistakes when I first started out and needless to sayâ?¦
They caused me a lot of grief!
Okay so here are the top 3 mistakes that you must avoid when making your first solar panel kitsâ?¦
Mistake No.1 â?? Spending more than what is needed.
You know, my first project I spent more than what was necessaryâ?¦
I bought an expensive plywood panel along with a fairly pricey glass sheet to cover the solar cells.
Quite a fair amount of cash wasted there!
Truth of the matter is you can make your own solar panel setup using inexpensive plywood panel. As long as itâ??s durable enough to hold the solar cells together, then youâ??re good to go!
Same goes for the glass sheet. Inexpensive Plexiglass sheet should suffice for your DIY solar panel kits!
My first attempt was a failureâ?¦
Anyway I had to purchase a new plywood panel and glass sheet.
Okay what about my second attempt?
It was a success and best of allâ?¦
The total cost only amounted to $206!
Mistake No.2 â?? Incorrect Wiring.
This mistake is quite common amongst beginners.
When doing the wiring configuration, ensure that the positive and the negative ending of the wires do not come into contact with one another.
To get a better understanding of this, we need to learn fromâ?¦
Mistake No.3 â?? Beginners are Too Reliant on Printed Manuals.
Itâ??s not a good idea for beginners to depend solely on printed manuals.
For me, the wiring process is the trickiest aspect of building a solar panel so itâ??s highly beneficial that we beginners refer to video instructions to get the entire process right.
Before I downloaded the instructional videos, I referred to printed manuals exclusively and it proved to be difficult!
Too many confusing jargons and diagrams killed my enthusiasm. I just couldnâ??t get the assembling process right!
If you watch instructional videos that are beginner-friendly, Iâ??m very sure that youâ??ll be able to assemble those DIY solar panel kits without much hiccups!