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shed and solar

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  1. #1
    Apprentice (new member)
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    Aug 2010
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    Default shed and solar

    I have recently had a garage/shed built. I can have the power run from the house to the garage, but in keeping my options open I was thinking of looking into a smallish solar/battery system installed for the garage off grid.
    So here is what is needed to power
    some hand tools eg jigsaw, dril,circular saw and a small angle grinder. Half a dozen lights, a small set of speakers (for mp3 player), maybe a phone charger and also a laptop.
    Now most days I would not be in there, when using power tools it would be short amount of time only, I would charge the drill battery packs. Lights would be fluro or LED. Now with lights and music, probably used at night when I am having a BBQ. so with that basic info and no info on wattage of tools etc. Can anyone 'shed' any light on what I should be looking for.

  2. #2
    2K Club Member chrisp's Avatar
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    May 2004
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Default

    Search the web for "RAPS" and, perhaps, "Selectronic" and see what turns up. Ring one or two suppliers and get them to "size" and quote a system for you.
    There is no middle ground between facts and fallacies - argumentum ad temperantiam

  3. #3
    Old Chippy 6K
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    Mar 2007
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    Canberra
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    Default

    I love solar, but gotta ask - why would ya bother? If you want to use renewable energy then buy Greenpower from your utility. The grid is a really handy thing to have if you can get it connected so unless you have to go that way - don't. Will cost a packet and little to gain.

    But if you want to have a play and have some money to spend go right ahead - as chrisp indicated well proved technology. A visit to the ATA website might help Alternative Technology Association website for info such as Alternative Technology Association website Blog Archive Solar Electricity: Plan your own electricity system
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2011
    Location
    Preston
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    Default

    maybe better feed in and buy back. How many times are you using the shed? I.e. you may charge your batterie, once full the panels do nothing. So better feed that energy into the grid, get more usage out of the PV?

  5. #5
    2K Club Member chrisp's Avatar
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    May 2004
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Steffen595 View Post
    How many times are you using the shed? I.e. you may charge your batterie, once full the panels do nothing.
    Systems (panels, batteries, inverter) need to be "sized" to the application. In this case, a very small panel would probably be sufficient as it would have all week to charge up the batteries for use on the weekend.

    I take your point that it may not be economical, but without a formal quote, the OP won't be in a position to make an informed decision.
    There is no middle ground between facts and fallacies - argumentum ad temperantiam

  6. #6
    1K Club Member
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    Oct 2007
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    Adelaide
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    Default

    If you can connect to mains power easily then that will certainly be a better way to go in terms of up-front cost. Do that and then if you want to use solar energy to save $ or help the environment then just get a grid-connected system.

    From an economic perspective, stand alone systems really only stack up when the power demand is small (and reasonably consistent) relative to the cost of connecting to the grid. That is unlikely to be the case in this situation.

    Of course, if you just want to do it then it's certainly possible. But if it's only a short distance from the house then running a cable for mains power would likely be cheaper.

  7. #7
    Apprentice (new member)
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Great Ocean Road Vic
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    My sheds on solar and I work from it. Made it up myself for a few hundred bucks. Small 12 volt panel , good car battery I had spare and a small inverter , couple of solar shed lights , also have a solar spot light rigged to turn on and off like a normal light
    Yep the car battery will ware out but I don't care it was going to waste anyway. When it does i'll chuck in a small deep cycle .
    I don't very often use power tools longer than a few mins a time with usually lots of gaps or hours between , sometimes though I've ran drills or circular saws for and hr or more on and off and then more later through day , yet to run out of juice but I can always plug in the cord to house if I did. The house is going turbine soon .
    Mine gets plenty of day off breaks to build up again but hey if I needed it more I'd just throw on a bigger panel.

    Cheers

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