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sneech 10-05-2008 05:23 PM

Solar Panel
There is no section on alternative energy. How come? I have a solar 12volt 15 watt solar panel that has failed. I use it to recharge deep cycle batteries. There are no volts being output in direct sunlight. I could use a solar panel repair kit (does this even exist?) and/or step by step instructions on how to repair it (soldering, materials, etc.). I know in theory this is quite simple, but it is not as easy to find info on the web as one would think. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Marvin Gardens 10-05-2008 05:48 PM

If you have a multimeter then you can trace it backwards to individual cell. Most often it is the diode that fails since the silicone cells will produce electricity even if torn in half.

That is the first thing I would check.

The do some continuity tests on the wires to see if they are bad. If you move the panel around that is not uncommon. If it was stationary and all of a sudden it went bad then the diode is suspect.

Then check each cell and see if they are producing electricity.

DangerMouse 10-05-2008 05:58 PM

others have mentioned an alternative energy section as well, i'd be following it as any and all info i can get to cut bills is always appreciated. Nathan? you out there? what ya think? you are correct in not many sites dealing with this problem. however, did you see this one?


sneech 10-05-2008 06:08 PM

Let me check more thoroughly. It worked then stopped working, but it was also moved around alot, so could be either the diode or the wiring. I have been unable to get any continuity on the wires though, but I'll recheck. I am also not entirely sure how to take this panel apart as much of it is glued and I don't want to break it. Thanks for your speedy response and I will update after I recheck.

sneech 10-05-2008 06:11 PM

Thanks Mdangermouse
I printed out this page:


DangerMouse 10-05-2008 06:57 PM

not a problem... be careful not to break it though, those things are (still) (too) expensive!


sneech 10-11-2008 05:58 AM

It's glued pretty good - decided to make it more of a long term project. In order for solar panels to be cost effective, they would have to sell for approx. $1.00 per watt, instead of the $8 or more per watt currently. Oh well. thanks for your help.

DangerMouse 10-11-2008 06:02 AM

not a problem, but.... did you get it fixed? seems to me if they can sell solar charged outdoor nite lites so cheaply, someone makes the collectors cheaply. why are panels so friggin' expensive? (no answer needed, rhetorical) "We the People" need to take charge of our own destinies and demand solar and wind and hydro power instead of filling the pockets of the already too rich and abusive oil companies.


sneech 10-11-2008 06:20 AM

No, I have to get it unglued. Mineral spirits? I have no idea what to use Eventually, I plan to make my own solar panels if I can make good quality and save money.

DangerMouse 10-11-2008 06:27 AM

dig out a small piece of the glue and experiment? you probably won't have much luck taking it apart w/o destroying it, unfortunately. any chance of gently breaking glass and regluing after repair? probly not, huh?


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