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#137303 - 06/23/08 03:27 PM Costco Solar Panels
Todd W Offline
Product Tester

Registered: 11/14/04
Posts: 1928
Loc: Mountains of CA
In case anyone is interested Costco has solar panels w/free shipping.

Solar Panels Solar Panels
Self Sufficient Home - Our journey to self sufficiency.

#137337 - 06/23/08 09:26 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: Todd W]
TeacherRO Offline

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2122
nice! What could these power?


#137339 - 06/23/08 09:31 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: TeacherRO]

Good price for 54W of power especially considering it has a charge controller and everything.

54W, for perspective, is enough to run most 12VDC electric coolers (Mine uses 47W peak according to the manufacturer).

#137341 - 06/23/08 09:54 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: ]
Blast Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3556
Loc: Spring, Texas
Any information about hooking them in series to increase power?

Blogging the Borderlands
Wild Edibles Blog
I miss OBG.

#137349 - 06/23/08 10:51 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: Blast]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2562
Loc: Alberta, Canada
I noticed these a few days ago. It's a very good deal, especially if you don't have any of the bits-and-pieces (charge controller, inverter).

54W is actually a useful amount of power. I wouldn't go with less than 45W for a mobile setup. It will keep all your battery-operated items (flashlights, LED lanterns, laptops, NiMH chargers, radios, cell phones, etc.) running quite nicely. Someone has thought this through.

FWIW, I have a couple of ICP panels (a 5W and a 15W). They've been out in the weather, -30C to +30C, for about three years now and have kept trickling out the precious juice.

In terms of hooking this setup in series: I'm pretty sure the panels would take it (most can take up to 10A, though check the documentation). But the charge controller that's included is only rated to 4A. So buy two setups and hook each to a big fat battery. Switch over as required.

Edited by dougwalkabout (06/23/08 10:54 PM)

#137355 - 06/23/08 11:42 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: dougwalkabout]
Russ Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4457
I went with the SunLinq 25 Watt Foldable Solar Charger for my car -- just plug it into the cigarette lighter.

#137429 - 06/24/08 02:17 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: Russ]
jshannon Offline

Registered: 02/02/03
Posts: 575
Loc: North Texas
Harbor freight has a 45 watt setup for $179.

#137437 - 06/24/08 02:47 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: jshannon]
Alex Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 1034
Loc: -

#137487 - 06/24/08 07:30 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: Blast]
MoBOB Offline

Registered: 09/17/07
Posts: 1205
Loc: here
I would run them in a setup similar to a buss bar. All the units would be hooked to a single feed line to the battery. Each unit would be or is protected by a diode to prevent nasty electrical things happening.

$.02 worth

Edited by MoBOB (06/24/08 07:31 PM)
"Its not a matter of being ready as it is being prepared" -- B. E. J. Taylor

#137490 - 06/24/08 07:47 PM Re: Costco Solar Panels [Re: MoBOB]
Russ Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4457
Agree. Run them in parallel to maintain whatever the output voltage happens to be (~12-15 VDC).

I may run up to the local Costco and see if they have these in stock.

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