How to Build Your Own Solar Panels

Do you live in the desert or somewhere sunny?

In fact, you do not have to live somewhere sunny these days as the technology has advanced so much. So even if you live in England, now could be the time to build your own solar panels?

Here are a few tips that might help you decide whether it's a project you might like to undertake.

Depending on your skill level, you can either build the project from a kit, or build it completely from scratch. You will need some basic carpentry and electrical skills.

First, have a search on the internet for potential suppliers. For example, there are numerous kits you can purchase from a certain popular online auction website. You will also find that there are there are many suppliers who will offer everything that is required to complete the job, as well as plans and advice on the assembly process.

You probably have all the tools needed to build your own solar panels already in your shed somewhere. These include a saw, hammer, soldering iron, knife, screws and screw drivers.

To construct the frames for the solar panels, you will need some wood, woodscrews etc, and mounting brackets to attach it to your roof. To save time you can get the wood cut for you at your local supplier. I do not know about you, but I find it impossible to saw two pieces of wood to make a perfect ninety degree join.

You will need pre-tabbed photo-voltaic cells and the tab wiring to connect them. Some glue, solder and flux, plastic sheeting to cover the lid of the housing, as well as blocking diodes to stop current reversal.

The next step is to stand back from your house and have a good look at your roof to decide where to mount the panels. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, you should mount it on the south side of your roof. If you are Down Under, then it will need to be mounted on the north side.

The panels will need to be slanted at 30 degrees to collect the optimum solar energy. Obviously there should be no trees or anything else in the way that will block the suns rays from the panel.

The solar panel configuration required is usually 6 by 6. Join the cell tabs with the wire and add the blocking diodes and cable to connect it to the storage battery. Cover with the plastic lid, seal the whole unit with silicone grouting and you're done

Mounting the panels on the roof should occur after some insulation has been applied to the rear of the housing, and to make the unit really efficient you need to paint the housing black.