Solar Resources

Hi There! You’ve stumbled upon our solar resources page which we’ve created as a supplemental resource to our virtual and in person solar discussions. The page is evolving and updating regularly so please feel free to comment and suggest additions on an as needed.

Original Presentation

 

Electricity Basics

Looking for information on the basics of electricity? Fridge-and-solar.net does a great job of explaining the basics here.  This is a great place to get started and also a good place to reference back to if you get stuck in further articles.

Wire Sizing:

Sizing wire can be complicated and is dependent on the Voltage and Wattage you are running over the line. We’ve found an online wire sizing tool that is handy for 12, 24 and 48 volt Solar array applications here.

Looking for a bit more of an advanced calculator? There is a great one available here from calculator.net. This calculator will show you voltage drop values for various wire sizes. Your target voltage drop should be 3% or less if possible for ideal solar output.

If you are looking for a more custom and flexible guide to wire sizing you can download this wire sizing table which we’ve found that is very helpful for calculating wire sizing for just about any application. You have to do you’re own math on this one but it’s pretty easy 🙂

Battery Wiring

Want a general idea of various wiring types for battery banks? Batterystuff.com does a good job on the basics of wiring on their website located here.  Free sun power who also provides a wiring size calculator above has a good page on wiring up your batteries here.

Battery Sizing

Battery bank sizing can be a challenge. This handy tool from wholesale solar does a good job of giving you the basics of what size battery bank you might need. If your not sure how much power you are consuming you can purchase a battery meter like this one to track the power consumption. You can also get a portable one that will plug into individual appliances like this one which is cheap or this one which is more advanced.

Power Consumption Chart

This handy website outlines some common household appliances and what amount of power they typically use. You can use this to get a better idea of how much solar and battery capacity you’ll need.

Solar Tiling

Interested in knowing what the optimal tilt angle is for your solar panels? Here is a link to a solarpaneltilt.com which is a simple but effective website that will help you understand the best tilting angles for your location.

Solar Shading

Just how bad is shade for solar panels? Here is a pretty cool video which will show you the affects.

 

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