DIY Solar Power Guide & Kits For Canada

(Batteries, Boats, Cabins, Cars, Devices, RVs, Sheds, and More)

This page is a DIY guide for various small-scale solar applications intended for use in Canadian. All solar equipment and kits mentioned on this page have been used and/or installed by Solar Panel Power Canada. And although we don’t recommend do-it-yourself solar for large at-home applications, we are happy to provide the following information for small-scale solar projects.

You can jump to your preferred topic by clicking on it below, otherwise continue reading as we explore the exciting world of Canadian DIY solar:

RV (coming Aug 2018)
Shed (coming Aug 2018)
Shop (coming Aug 2018)
Cabin/Cottage (coming Aug 2018)

Micro Use Cases

Phones, Computers, and Devices

Solar Charger Phone Computer USB Devices

The ultimate solar charging kit for all your devices is the Allpowers 100 Watt Solar Charger. You can use this panel to charge your computer and 2 USB connected devices at the same time, very easily.

In fact, our management team uses this exact solar charger to power their computers and phones at our outside work stations! We’re seriously using it now… while typing this page.

Specs

  • Two USB Ports (5V/2.4A)
  • One Versatile Charging Port (18V/5A)
  • 100 Watts Rated Output (Highest Efficiency SunPower Solar Cells)

Comes with 10 laptop charging adapters (to charge laptops), alligator clips adapter (to charge 12V batteries), a cigarette lighter adapter (to charge car batteries), and a DC5521 female adapter (to charge lights, alarm clocks, radios, and most small electronics). You must supply your own USB cables (to charge devices).

The panel also comes with a built in solar charge controller which limits the output voltage and amperage – ensuring that you never damage your devices.

Solar Power Camping Hiking BeachBenefits

There are several benefits of the Allpowers solar charger:

  • It weights just 4.7lbs and folds to fit in a small bag
  • It’s built to safely charge all your devices and more
  • Comes with all adapters, take out of box and begin charging

The Allpowers solar charger can easily maintain 18V and charge devices in overcast weather. Perfect for any outdoors application including beaching, biking, boating, camping, canoeing, climbing, hiking, kayaking, RVing, road trips, walking, and more.

Independent Results

We are able to get the charger to power two iPhones simultaneously at a rate of 1 percentage point per minute each while in direct sunlight. The charger is able to charge a single iPhone at a rate of 1 percentage point every two minutes on extremely cloudy days (overcast with isolated light rain).

Buy on Amazon.ca


12 Volt Batteries

12V Battery (Emergency)

Solar Panel Charging 12V Battery

12Volt Battery Charging Solar
Note the alligator clips, cigarette lighter, DC5521, and computer adapters. Also 2 USB ports for devices.

If you’re looking to charge your 12V battery using solar in emergency situations only (i.e. when the battery is very low or if it dies), then we highly recommend continuing to use the Allpowers 100 Watt Solar Charger (recommended in the previous section).

The Allpowers charger comes with alligator clips which you can easily connect to your battery: absolutely no set-up, special connections, or wiring is required!

Benefits

The obvious benefit of this setup is its size and versatility. The foldable panel is extremely compact and can fit in with your spare tire, under the back seat, or even in the glove box.

As an added bonus, the charger makes a great companion for road, boat, and RV trips as it can easily be used to charge all of your devices at once (including phones and computers)!

Buy on Amazon.ca


12V Battery (Charger)

Charging 12 Volt Battery Solar Power Using a solar panel to charge (or maintain) your battery on a regular basis requires an additional piece of equipment called a ‘Solar Charge Controller’.

The Solar Charge Controller goes in-between your solar panel and your battery and automatically cuts power supply to the battery when it’s fully charged.

If you’re wanting to use the Allpowers 100 Watt Solar Charger as your panel (recommended in the devices section), then we highly recommend purchasing the SunForce 7 Amp Charge Controller.

Solar Charge Controller 12 Volt BatterySpecs

  • 7 Amps Max Current (sized perfectly for 100 Watt solar panel)
  • 13V Cut-in Voltage (will supply the battery with power when its less than 13 volts)
  • 14.2V Cut-out Voltage (will cut power supply to the battery when it reaches 14.2 volts)

As an added bonus, when used with the Allpowers 100 Watt Solar Charger, there is (again) absolutely no set-up, special connections, or wiring required!

Simply connect the alligator clips from the solar panel to the exposed wire on the SunForce 7 Amp Solar Charge Controller, then connect the controller to your 12V battery.

Benefits

The main benefit of using a solar charge controller is that you can safely leave your 12V batteries unattended for any length of time.

The 100 Allpowers Solar Panel is sized to charge the battery even on cloudy days and the controller will cut power supply in and out as needed – never harming your battery by over charging it.

And again, a major benefit of using this equipment is the extreme ease of use. There is no set-up required, simply take both the panel and the charge controller out of their boxes – and then begin charging your batteries.

Buy on Amazon.ca


12V Battery (Maintainer)

Charging 12 Volt Battery Solar Power

Maintaining your battery is the exact same story as charging it on a regular basis: you need a solar charge controller so that you can leave the battery unattended for any length of time.

Combining the Allpowers 100 Watt Solar Charger with the SunForce 7 Amp Charge Controller is our preferred option for its extreme versatility and ease of use (see previous sections for details).

Buy on Amazon.ca


Please note that on this page only, we are a participant in the Amazon Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon and affiliated sites. As stated, we have independently purchased, used and/or installed each product mentioned on this page.


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Chris

It’s October now, when will your shop and cabin guides be up? It says Aug 2018.

Paul

Looking forward to reading about your RV stuff…