Prepper Forum / Survivalist Forum banner

Solar Test Run

1310 Views 7 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Piratesailor
I built a small solar system a couple months back patterned off of a youtube link I've posted elsewhere. It consists of a lawn tractor battery, a simple 12v charger/maintainer from SunForce, and a Black and Decker inverter. With a winter storm about to pummel the east coast in the next couple days, I thought it would be a good time to test it out.

I'm currently pointed directly north which is far less than ideal (solar panels in the northern hemisphere should be pointed south), but I'm still picking up charge anyways. If we lose power, I'm planning on running a space heater in my room from the system and maybe a string of LED's or charging my iphone.

I will let you all know how it works!
1 - 2 of 8 Posts
Having a large boat with a considerable battery bank and several large panels I will also chime in that your not likely to be able to run that space heater long with the kind of juice they draw! For heating I think you will find propane or my personal favorite, kerosene heaters a better option than electric heating. A decent panel and large amp hour battery though should run LED's for you just fine and perhaps a few other low consumption items occasionally.
  • Like
Reactions: 1
Yeah I have about 720 watts of panels and a Windmill generator mounted on my mast and 980 amp hours of gel cell marine batterys on my 37 ft lancer Sloop. It sounds like a lot but trust me it doesnt take long to drain those 8D batterys down even without running a space heater!

Under good conditions they usually generated about 3/4th of their rated wattage for about 6 hours a day, sometimes longer when in the tropics, thats not much. The windmill would produce about 400 watts an hour if there was a good 15-18 mphs of wind hitting it. The batterys held enough of a charge to allow me to go about 2 days or so off shore power if I didnt use the Radar, Microwave or electric stove and only ran the fridge a few hours a day. Solar power is great but its not effcient and its expensive to set up an array and battery bank that will hold you over. It is a pretty decent investment though when you consider the cost over the long haul of 15-20 years. Good batterys will only last about 5-6 years if you dont completely drain them very often. And yes I had a gas genset on board below deck in addition to the desiel engine the boat had. Sometimes I needed it!
See less See more
1 - 2 of 8 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.