Benefits of Building Your Own Solar Panels
Making solar panels for your home is a popular option for a lot of people because:
- you can cut out the middle-man, the installer, potentially saving a ton of money;
- learning how solar panels work and how to build solar panels is fun and empowering;
- who wouldn’t like to say, “Yeah, I built those;”
- you get to save money and help the planet at the same time.
Check out the instructional video below to learn more about the benefits of DIY solar, as well as how to set up your own panels at home.
How to Get Started Building Homemade Solar Panels
Though I have not built solar panels myself, this is a topic I’ve been interested in for awhile. From what I’ve learned, one of the most important things is to get a good guide. While a good guide may cost more, it can also save you a lot of money (and time) in the long run.
There is a TON of free information about building solar panels that you can find online, but having a guide makes it super easy for you to know exactly what you should do.
If you decide to buy a DIY guide, make sure they provide a money-back gaurantee in case you are not satisfied with the instructions.
5 More Key Tips
A few more key tips I’ve picked up from looking into this topic include:
- Don’t buy broken solar cells — it’s not worth it.
- Go high-quality on the backing material. This is one of the hardest parts to replace and, given that your solar panels are expected to last 25-40 years, you want to make sure your backing material lasts that long as well.
- Don’t jump in too fast. I know, when you start getting excited, it’s hard not to. But make sure you carefully read any guides you buy before you get started.
- Get a professional electrician to do the final wiring. It probably won’t cost you a ton and could save you big headaches and a lot of money. This part can be tricky and is really best left to a professional, or so I hear.
- If you use batteries, keep your system charged. Keeping your batteries 50-80% charged will give them longer lives.
If you have actually built your own solar panels, I’d also love to find out about your experience via the comments below.
There are many ways to go solar. If this one doesn’t work for you, look into one of the many other ways!
I'm the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular clean energy website in the world, and Planetsave, a leading green and science news site. I've been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and I've been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, bicycling, and wind energy for the past few years. You can also find my work on Scientific American, Reuters, Think Progress, GE's ecomagination site, several sites in the Important Media network, & many other places. To connect on your favorite social network, go to: zacharyshahan.com