Solar Panel Heater

A few posts ago I mentioned that I was building a solar panel heater ( also known as a soda can heater or solar space heater). Well, I finished the project, but have run into a small problem.

The solar heater actually works very well. Air gets pulled in through the bottom and circulated through the black aluminum cans and exits as hot air. It works just like it’s supposed to.

The problem I have is that attaching it to the house has proved more difficult than I thought. The area I originally planned to put it doesn’t get quite as much sunlight as I thought. Unfortunately, the house is made of concrete, so attaching it to the house and adding holes is very difficult. I am currently looking at mounting it in a different location and using long pipes to run it into the house.

Until then, here are some of the pictures from the building process.

New Solar Panels for Sale: Nanosolar

One of the biggest set backs for solar panels has been the high costs that it takes to manufacture them. This in turn makes their retail cost very high. Well, not there is are some new solar panels for sale in the market by a company called Nanosolar.

Nanosolar’s focus has been to try and lower the cost of manufacturing the panels so they can easily be produced. They have done this by using a special ink to literally print the panels onto a sheet. According to Nanosolar they can make their panels for about a tenth of what it costs to make panels currently on the market today.

Check out the video below and let me know what you think.

Solar Panels, Solar Energy, Green Projects, and Evil Geniuses

Okay, the title is a little bit long. A few weeks ago on solar panels for sale I wrote about ordering some new books. In particular: Solar Energy projects for the Evil Genius, 50 Green Projects for the Evil Genius, and The Home Energy Diet: How to Save Money by Making Your House Energy-Smart. Well, they arrived and I have had a chance to take a look at them. And to be honest I am a little surprised at the results.

My primary purpose for these books was to see what types of helpful projects they contained for installing or making your own solar panels, solar heater, solar cookers, and other types of green energy. I was also hoping for tips and help on making a home more energy efficient. So what did I find out?

Well it depends on what you want. The one I was looking forward to the most Solar Energy projects for the Evil Genius turned out to be the one that was the least helpful. It had a few unique projects on making solar cookers or water heaters, but most of the projects seem to be more about learning a concept rather than something that is actually useful.

50 Green Projects for the Evil Genius actually turned out to be pretty cool. It has info on how to install solar panels on your house, make compost bins, build water purifiers, and a whole bunch more. The thing I liked about this one was that most of the projects were useful.

The Home Energy Diet: How to Save Money by Making Your House Energy-Smart also turned out to be a decent book, but only for someone who owns or is building their own home. It was very comprehensive on how to get the most energy efficiency with your house. However, it was also not a simple book. I felt like I needed to be a contractor to understand half the things I read through. Unless you are building or own your own house this probably isn’t a great choice.

Solar Heater (soda can heater)

Over the last few days, the big news has been that Lowe’s will start carrying solar panels for sale for people wanting to install the panels themselves. While you can build your own solar panels for much cheaper, this is definitely a win for solar panels and green energy.

However, since winter is almost here, I have been working on the solar space heater (also known as a soda can heater, or beer can heater) and it is almost done. I am just waiting to collect a few more cans.

soda can heater

I watched a number of videos on how to connect the tubes, but finally decided that the best and easiest way was to cut off the bottoms of the cans and push one into another. At the other end I cut a hole in the bottom of the can and and put it in backwards to the others. This gives me can tops at both ends.

solar space heater-cans

For the intake and exhaust pipes I used expandable aluminum piping. This isn’t ideal as it is pretty weak when it expands, but it should help raise the temp a little more. Square rain pipe would be ideal, but it isn’t available here where I live.

solar space heater-intake

solar space heater-intake

Check out the pictures and leave comments if you have any questions. I will make another post once it is finished.

Solar Panels For Sale- Solar Panel and Energy Books

solar energy evil genius 50 green projects evil genius home energy diet

A few days ago I ordered a three of books about solar panels and green energy: Solar Energy projects for the Evil Genius, 50 Green Projects for the Evil Genius, and The Home Energy Diet: Ho to Save Money by Making Your House Energy-Smart. Two are for myself and one is a gift for a friend.

Once they get here I will post review on the books and of course any of the projects that I complete. I live in Japan, and the books will be coming from the US, so it might be a week or two before they arrive.

My hope is that these books contain some serious green energy and solar panel  projects and not just science experiments. I have mentioned before that there are a lot of pre-made solar panels for sale, but that you can make your own much cheaper (you can find more information on this by clicking the ad in the sidebar) and I am hoping these books will also include various methods to create other cheap green projects.

**Update: Since I posted this post this morning, I found out that the books have arrived in the US and will be shipped to me tomorrow. If all goes well I should have them within a week

Installing Solar Panels and 49 Other Things to Go Green

green grass, water drops and blue sky / background

Recently I have been spending a lot of time researching going green and especially solar panels. Today I stumbled across a little “green” gem called “A little Green E-book”. The book is put out by Morgan Stanly and contains 50 tips to help you save money and reduce your carbon footprint.

Solar panels will certainly help you save money and use less energy, but there are also a lot of other things you can do. Take a look and start making some changes today.

A Little Green E-book

Solar Space Heater: Using Solar Power To Heat Your House in the Winter

A full sun eclipse - 3d render

The focus of Solar Panels for Sale is to discuss how to purchase, find, or make solar panels for your house. However, since we are now coming into the coldest months of the year, I wanted to talk a little bit about heating your house. If you already have solar panels or are in the process of building them, then they will be able to run an electric heater to keep your house warm. Lately, I have come across another way to use the suns energy to heat your house, a solar space heater (also known as a beer can heater or soda can heater.

The basic idea of s solar space heater is to use the sun to heat up a air as it which can then be fed into your house. In this case, soda cans are spray painted back to catch more of the suns rays and as the air passes through them it is heated. Since hot air rises, cool air is automatically pulled in from the bottom and hot air is pushed out from the top. A lot of people also use fans to pump additional air.

I have started making mine, and overall the projet has cost about $15 in supplies. This is buying everything new here in Japan. I think it could be built for much less in the US and especially if you have scrap materials laying around. Here is my frame so far. Now I am just waiting to collect more cans. ( I have been encouraging my friends to drink more…it’s for the environment right?).

Fram and backing for solar space heater
Frame and backing for solar space heater

The pine frame cost about $5 and the backing is piece of corrugated plastic. I choose it because it was cheaper than wood and I am hoping will provide a bit of installation. I will continue to keep taking pictures and give more details once it is built. I will also give the results once I have it hooked up to the house (just have to get those cans).

In the meantime, check out the videos below for details and ideas. If you have built your own or are going to give it a try please post comments and let me know how it goes.

I think this one is particularly well made and designed.

Solar Panels For Sale

illustration of a solar panel for renewable energy

So you have decided you are tired of handing over your entire pay check just to run the electricity in your house. Or maybe you want to use a more sustainable form of energy to help the environment. Using solar panels will not only help the environment, but it will help you save money as well. The only problem is that you aren’t sure where to get started. There are so many types of solar panels for sale it is difficult to decide which ones are best for you. Well, you’ve come to the right place. Cheap Solar Panels For Sale is focused on providing you with information to get you started and help you choose the best options.

When considering solar panels and other alternative forms of energy, the first question you need to ask yourself is, “What is your overall goal?” Are you looking to power a few appliances in your house, or are you trying to get off the electrical grid all together?

If you aren’t sure, then you might consider some of the various costs and benefits. Solar panels will cost money up front, but save you money every month once they are installed. You should also check for energy discounts with your local government. There may be a number of rebates for installing solar panels that will substantially lower the cost.

Of course, it is also important to consider your location and environment. Solar panels have gotten much more efficient, but you may need to consider additional methods if you  live in an area that gets little sunlight.

If you are still finding the cost of installing solar panels on your house too expensive, then you might try a “do it yourself solar panel” kit. There are now a number of solar panel kits and books available to help you install solar panels yourself. Most books will explain the basics and lay out the steps so they are easy to follow. If you are a hands on person this is probably the way to go. If you are looking for a good kit to get your started check out the DIY Solar Panels in the right sidebar–>.

As I mentioned, there are a lot of different kinds of solar panels for sale and they each have their own set of benefits and disadvantages.  We will be covering them in future posts. Please subscribe to our feed to make sure you don’t miss them.