Sun is the best source of power that provides free energy and its demand is increasing. All the sectors that are empowered by electricity can use the solar panel as the alternative source of the energy. However solar panels can produce 500 watts or more to run the low voltage machines but can you charge the car batteries?
If yes then how to charge car battery with solar panel? Well, you need a voltmeter to check the voltage while charging and disconnect when it shows 14 volts. For the complete process just explore the article.
- What Size Solar Panel Do You Need to Charge a Car Battery
- What You’ll Need to Charge a Car Battery With a Solar Panel?
- How to Charge Car Battery With Solar Panel
- 1. Check the Back of Your Panel for the Wattage
- 2. Divide the Solar Watt Rating by the Voltage of Your Battery
- 3. Mount the Charge Controller
- 4. Connect a Positive and a Negative Wire to the Battery
- 5. Slide the Edges of the Wires
- 6. Use Mc4 Connectors to Connect the Wires to the Charge Controller
- 7. Connect the Wires With the Solar Panel
- 8. Check the Output on the Charge Connector
- 9. Leave the Battery to Charge
- Are Solar Car Battery Chargers Worth It?
What Size Solar Panel Do You Need to Charge a Car Battery
It depends on the car’s battery because different cars have different sized batteries. As an example, if you want to install these solar Products for Van specifically for RV the average battery size is 12 volts. Therefore you need a solar panel that can produce 13 voltages.
Sometimes it produces less energy as it is rated for because of the bad weather but it is able to produce up to 17 volts under the burning sun. Therefore you need a solar panel that can produce 12-13 volts originally. If your car battery is bigger than that you need more volts solar panel.
What You’ll Need to Charge a Car Battery With a Solar Panel?
To complete the task you need some equipment that you may buy from the local shop. Check the list below before going to the shop.
- A solar panel
- A voltmeter
- Insulated wire
How to Charge Car Battery With Solar Panel
Charging with solar panels is the best way to use pure and sustainable energy. Before you start the process install a charge controller to regulate the voltage. Now, let’s jump to the process of how to charge a car battery with a solar panel.
1. Check the Back of Your Panel for the Wattage
Generally, there is a sticker at the back of the solar panel where the watts are mentioned produced by the solar panel. If it is 250 watts that means it generates 250 watts of energy.
- If you don’t have the sticker you can use a multimeter to measure the wattage output of the solar panel.
- Solar panels can produce more power than their rating. As an example, if the panel is rated for 12 volts it may produce 17 volts under the shiny sun.
- As it produces more energy it can damage the battery with overcharging. That’s why you need a multimeter to prevent overcharging.
2. Divide the Solar Watt Rating by the Voltage of Your Battery
Find the voltage of the battery and divide it into the wattage listed on the back of the solar panel. In this way, you will get the amps that the charge controller needs to handle to secure the charging.
For example, if the solar panel is 300 watts and you are going to charge a 12v battery. Divide 300 with 12, you get 25 as the result which is amp. In that case, you should get the charger controller for 30 amps.
3. Mount the Charge Controller
Install the charge controller on a plastic board instead of a metal board. Next, join the wire from the panel to the charge controller. It is safe to place the controller on non-conductive material.
4. Connect a Positive and a Negative Wire to the Battery
Connect them by wrapping bare wires and secure the wires with a clamp. You can use a ring connector instead of the clamp. Then do the following
- Start connecting the battery first to avoid a sudden surge that may damage the controller.
- Use the red wire as the positive wire and the black wire as the negative.
- If the battery bank has wires to connect then you don’t need the new wires.
5. Slide the Edges of the Wires
To connect the controller doesn’t need to fit the wire, just slide them to the ports. You will find the ports at the back of the controller.
- Slide the bare ends of the wires to the specific ports designated for positive and negative wires.
- Use the screwdriver to tighten the screws over the slide option.
- If the battery is 12 volts use a 10 or 16 gauge wire.
6. Use Mc4 Connectors to Connect the Wires to the Charge Controller
Normally the output wires of the solar panel are fitted with the MC4 connectors which are long cylindrical fittings with a male and female side. Fit the wires running from your charge connector with NC4 connectors. Join the bare ends of the input wires to the charge connector.
7. Connect the Wires With the Solar Panel
Once the wire is connected to the charge connector you have another two loose wires. Connect them with an MC4 connector by matching the male to female and vice versa as it comes from the solar panel. There will be a beep when the connections are established.
8. Check the Output on the Charge Connector
Most of the connector has a digital screen to display the outputs that are flowing to the battery. If the number is “0” check everything again to make sure everything is connected properly. If the reading starts means it is working and ready to flow solar energy to charge the battery
9. Leave the Battery to Charge
It depends on several things to determine the charge time of the battery such as the Battery size, solar panel wattage, and weather. When you notice that the output is dropping means the battery is nearly full. Once the charge connector stops the flow of energy disconnect the battery as it is fully charged.
Are Solar Car Battery Chargers Worth It?
It has some magnificent benefits that make it worth buying. A solar car charger makes it easy to charge the car battery anywhere on the planet. Check the below section to make sure are solar car battery chargers worth it?
- A solar charger is cost-free, just buy one and enjoy the service for a long time with no extra cost.
- It is eco-friendly as it doesn’t emit carbon dioxide and waste.
- This device doesn’t need any other electrical sources to charge the battery.
- A solar panel provides a steady stream of power that is clean that prolongs the battery life.
- Solar chargers are compact and highly portable which is moveable to anywhere you want.
- Just keep the panel where there is good sunlight and it starts to produce energy, so simple.
- It is easier than the electric car charger to use.
Solar energy is free and always available if the weather is fine you can enjoy a great service. You can do so many things with the solar panel which is easy and comfortable. Amongst them, charging your car battery when you are camping or if there is no power supply is the best thing you can get.
If you have a solar panel and you know how to charge car battery with solar panel, you are safe during a power cut. As you can charge the battery with the solar panel. On top of that, you can use solar power for other needs as well.