Building Solar Panels…A DIY PROJECT
The sun is shining, and the only cloud in the sky is the fact that you may be “Off The Grid” because of a disaster that just came about. Your answer to the problem may be that you need to seriously examine how to go about building solar panels, and here are a few tips that just might help…
Check out the online specials for materials and save on the construction cost. In addition, there are many suppliers who will offer everything that is required to complete the job, as well as plans and advice on assembly.
Here is a video that will walk you through the process:
The tools needed to build solar panels will probably already build in the workshop and include a hammer, saw, soldering iron, screwdrivers, and a knife.
The materials list is a little longer but most people already have some timber to make the frame for mounting the panels on the roof and the screws and wood panels to make the housing for the cells.
Purchase pre-tabbed photo-voltaic cells and the tab wiring to connect them. Some eva glue, solder and flux, plastic sheeting to cover the lid of the housing as well as blocking diodes to stop current reversal, and the project can be started.
The next step to building solar panels is to make a cup of coffee and make some decisions on where the solar panels are going to be sited. South facing slope of 30?…. that is not shaded or in the path of natural pests is required, and if possible one that will allow wiring to be easily conducted into the area you choose to house the storage batteries.
When starting out to building solar panels, allow a weekend and clear a space on the workshop floor that is clean and dust free. The process is essentially an assembly project once the cells are fixed to a backing board in rows, usually of 6×6 size.
Join the cell tabs with the wire and add the blocking diodes and cable to connect up to the storage battery and cover with the plastic lid. Seal the whole unit with the silicone grouting.
Mounting the solar panels on the roof should occur after some insulation has been applied to the rear of the housing, and to really make the unit efficient paint all the housing black – not the lid though!
This may be a two person job, not just because solar panels can be heavy, but because it is awkward and made more difficult when working at heights.
If the whole thing seems a little too much for the DIY skills at hand, then you can purchase a kit set or even a complete unit. Before you buy, check out someone who has already gone down the same track of building solar panels, or at least try to see a solar-powered unit in action.
The project should be fun, as learning how to build solar panels is survival technology that can give the homeowner some true independence in times when the supply of power can be unreliable or just plain unavailable.