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Old 02-05-2011, 08:36 AM  
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danville, kentucky
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 86 | Kudos: +13
Harbor Freight 45 watt solar panel kits.

my first one arrived yesterday. i have it set up in the drive way getting light from sun up till sun down. it is set so that it gets direct sunlight at noon and is collecting it from the sides as long as tthe sun is out. a tracker would be ideal, but at the moment i'll use what i have on hand. i hooked it up around 2:00 yesterday and hooked it up to my lawn mower batery. needless to say it is now fully charged.

i was amazed at how easy it was to set up, but i will be making improvements to the panle holder. it is kinda flimsy to say the least about it. it is raining here and has been over cast since i set it up yesterday, but it is producing great power for trickle charging batteries. i have two more kits coming and a much better charge controller. i think i'm going o invest in about a total of 15 of these kits and a grid tie inverter. the charge controller i am going to use has a dump feature that when the battery bank is fully charged it dumps the power that comes off the panels into the grid tie inverter and puts it back into the grid of my home. that means the electric metter either slows down or turns backwards until i use a big 220 volt item or use over the power my panels are putting out.

for a starter bank of batteries i am going to use 10-20 deep cycle batteries. as time and money allows i will change them out to a better battery system.

i'm also going to make a solar air heater.
all this will be used in my out biulding. i will have a solar panel on a fan on the solar heater so that when the sun is out it will keep the biulding warm i hope.

i'm just trying this out right now to see what can be done when i biuld my next home. i'm not a big liberal greeny. i'm a conservative and figure anything i can do to save myself money on electric and heating is great!!!!
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Old 02-17-2011, 04:40 PM  
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danville, kentucky
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i have 3 set up now and one more on the way. i changed to a better charge controller and have a pretty good battery bank going on. i can run lights and a small stereo with a inverter in the day without the batteries hooked up. it's amazing what these can do when you set it up right.
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Old 02-22-2011, 03:54 PM  
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Nice first step to getting some free power and go green!
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:00 PM  
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Reading, PA
Join Date: Sep 2010
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Very cool. I"ve read about people who have setups like that where they become completely self contained for electricity. They get money back from the electricity they don't use. Plus when the lights go out on the rest of the block they keep humming right along. Would love to have a setup like that. Keep us updated on your progress!
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Old 02-23-2011, 07:55 PM  
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danville, kentucky
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Posts: 86 | Kudos: +13
nobody gets money back from the electric company. that is a urban myth. what the electric company does is they give you credits toward your bill. what that means is if you unhooked your solar and ran the home off thier credits you don't have to pay them till you use up all the credits.

i'm a conservative so i'm not a greeny. i'm just looking at ways to be self reliant and not depend on somebody else. my next home will not have 120 from the electric company running to it. i will have a big enouh battery bank o run the 12 volt lighting and inverters for everything else.
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:04 PM  
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Reading, PA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nobody View Post
nobody gets money back from the electric company. that is a urban myth. what the electric company does is they give you credits toward your bill. what that means is if you unhooked your solar and ran the home off thier credits you don't have to pay them till you use up all the credits.

i'm a conservative so i'm not a greeny. i'm just looking at ways to be self reliant and not depend on somebody else. my next home will not have 120 from the electric company running to it. i will have a big enouh battery bank o run the 12 volt lighting and inverters for everything else.
I never said you get money back from the electric company. The link below is to another site I"m on. Now that site isn't quite as PC as this one so please take that into consideration before going to it. If you don't like some salty language then steer clear. But there is nothing questionable or illegal about the content. That being said if you read through the thread especially the posts by Doc Savage (he's the one with the set up and the most knowledge on how it works) it will explain it with great detail and clarity. His posts start at post #6 Electricity generating solar "windows"... this could be huge!

If the link to the other site is a problem, I apologize, and mods please remove it. I will understand.
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Old 02-25-2011, 06:51 AM  
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Terre Haute, Indiana
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Forgive me if I'm wrong, but i always heard that backfeeding the power grid was both dangerous and illegal. Is this not the case?


That said, I always thought about using solar and geothermal heating as well as maybe a small water turbine for supplemental power. If i can find the right property...
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Old 02-26-2011, 09:00 AM  
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Checking the back of mens magazines for coupons and 20 percent off. I talked to an employee and he said that the add in magazines has specials that cannot be found anywhere else. I got 50 percent off of a cart I was buying from the back of Rider magazine. Just FYI I have seen these solar panel coupons in science magazines.
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Old 03-01-2011, 02:12 PM  
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danville, kentucky
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Originally Posted by Otahyoni View Post
Forgive me if I'm wrong, but i always heard that backfeeding the power grid was both dangerous and illegal. Is this not the case?


That said, I always thought about using solar and geothermal heating as well as maybe a small water turbine for supplemental power. If i can find the right property...
if you have a good grid tie inverter that is what they are made for. you don't want to try to jerry rig anything.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:02 AM  
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i also have a 20-watt solar panels but i no longer use it.. It's actually an MCU-based solar panel. We made it during our Design Project and its really working well. I can't upload the photos now ..
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