Solar powered shed: 01 Basic solar setup

 

I’ve decided to install solar power in my storage shed it’s ready to run the lights cuz the storage shed doesn’t have any windows I bought all the components online mostly on eBay and it cost just over hundred pounds but before I fix anything to the shed I’m gonna wire it all up and check that it’s all working here’s the solar panel it’s a 12 volt 40 watt paddle it’s mounted on an aluminium frame and the frame comes with fixing holes it’s made from out bridges three amps but it would need a really sunny day to reach that it’s got just 2 cables make multiple sleeve and negative so it’s all very simple nowadays they’re typically cold and cloudy in British autumn day but I’ll turn the panel over connect it to my multimeter and see how much electricity it’s generating so negative to negative and as I can act up the positive your multimedia shape which is a voltage good that’s working I’ll zoom in on the multimeter which is set to the 10 to 50 volt range it’s actually raised in just over 20 volts way above the 12 12 I was expecting but I guess that’s where the next gadget comes in I need to quickly make up some extension wires these will be probably connected in the final installation but for now I’ll just twist a couple of wires together and wedge them into the connectors so I don’t get confused I’m using red wire for the positive and black for the negative I’ll leave that red wire you’ll the edge of the bench so it doesn’t touch the black one and short out to stop the wise falling out or take the connectors with some insulation table those are done so I’ll get the bastard away I need to be careful of airwires don’t touch but now I’m ready for let’s convert it this is the charge controller this regulates the power coming from the panel it stops of a battery from being overcharged and also stops it from running completely flat the black sensor on top is a temperature sensor it’ll shut off the system if things get too old it’s kind of the brains of the outfit I’ll zoom in and show how it connects up there are three pairs of connectors a positive and a negative which a pair for connecting a solar panel a pair for connecting the battery and a pair for connecting the load which were my shed will be the lights so first off I’ll connect up my solar panel using the extension wires I’ve just made as ever black wire negative to the negative connector of the charge controller and the red wire to the positive just check the nice and tight I’ll tidy those out the way for the moment leave space for the battery this is the battery I’ll be using it’s a leisure battery out of a caravan that my neighbor was scrapping so I got it for free it’s been sat for a while discharged so it may not be any good but it’s gonna be worth a try the terminals are clearly marked positive and negative I’ll use these red and black wires to connect it up I find it he’s smaller Jubilee clips are the right size for these round battery terminals just slack it off a bit duct the beam into the wire inside double-check that the red wires going to the positive terminal then select the Jubilee clip over the terminal and tighten the screw been the same for the black wire on the negative terminal so they’re the two wires they need to be careful they don’t touch and short battery out I’ll just move it out the way now get the charge controller again so I can connect up the battery it’s usually safer to start with the negative wire just sliding the black wire and tighten up the screw that’s good and tight and then the same for the positive way there the display of the charge controller has come on so that’s working too I’ll just zoom in on the display to share what’s going on this graphic top left represents the panel the flashing arrows shows this generating power and charging the battery at twelve point eight volts the battery the graphic in the middle here is 75% charged and as a smiley face so maybe it’s not too bad that’s all there is to the charge side the solar panel connected to the battery via a charge controller just four wires for my shed lights of using these cheapo car reversing lights you can get these at most car parts places or of course online I’ve replaced the standard bulbs on the left here with these funny-looking LED bulbs the LEDs should give the same amount of light but use much less power so the batteries in the last longer to connect it up again there’s just two wires to connect negative first and tighten it up then as soon as I click the positive the light should come on yes I’ll just tighten this up and get these wires out of the way so that’s the setup all working the panel connected to the charge controller here the battery positive and negative also connected to the charge controller and the light also connected to the charge controller the charge controller sits in the middle managing the power and keeping everything safe I got all this we just over a hundred pounds I’ve disconnected the light this is one of the thing I want to try I don’t really need this to the storage shed but I expect it’ll come in handy it’s a power inverter which will allow me to run ordinary power tools from the battery it converts the 12-volt DC battery power to 24 volt AC power that you get from a lower wall socket in the house it’s going to socket for a UK three-pin plug on one end and also an on/off switch the other end has two vac cables with clips for connecting to the battery before tried out I’m going to make a quick modification because the inverter runs directly from the battery it isn’t protected by the charge controller for added safety I want a circuit breaker like a big fuse to protect the inverter this one is rated at 100 amps if the current goes above that the breaker will trip and cut off the power and then it can be reset with this little lever I’ll wire it into the red that’s the positive cable on the inverter I’ll take the cable off to make it easier they just unscrew from the inverter and put that aside cut the cable about half way along doesn’t matter exactly where strip back the insulation this knife is really the best tool I must get myself some proper wire strippers anyway that’s one done then again same the other side the end of the breaker just unscrew and inside is a little collar slide the casing over the cable first twist the wires a bit then slip the collar on insert the wire into the breaker you tighten up the screw then replace the cover it just screws off same the other side cover collar insert tighten and screw the couple back I just need to reattach the cable to the inverter these washes are bit fiddly okay that’s back together and the breaker is installed these clamps attached directly to the battery terminals black cable first onto the negative terminal need to make a good connection then the red one when I switch it on Faton starts up so that’s working I’ll test it with this drill I put a whole sorbets in the end just to make it easier to see it working on the video it just plugs in like an ordinary wall socket switch on the inverter there goes the fan it is very noisy and the drill works that it’s plugged into the mains so I now have my solar panel connected to the charge controller it’s charging the battery then connected to the battery is the inverter with a circuit breaker in there for added protection the inverter in the breaker together cost about thirty six pounds you you

 

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