How to Build A Solar Panel From Scratch: Updated Guide

Today, we’re sharing a complete step by step technique on how to build a diy solar panel from scratch. Stay tuned!

Commercially available solar panels are very costly. The good news is you can make your solar panel from scratch.

To build your own solar panel, you’ll need to build a frame, buy and attach solar cells, build the panel box, wire the panel and install your entire solar panel.

Solar energy is a growing industry. With this renewable energy source, power can be produced that does not damage the environment and reduces carbon footprint.

It also helps to lower electricity bills.

One clear benefit of making your solar panel is that they are much cheaper and you can configure the solar panel to fit your power requirements.

The measures needed to make a solar panel at home are then followed…

Phase #1 Establishing a System to Enable Solar Cells

Establishing a System to Enable Solar Cells

The first step is to build a solar panel system.

This structure protects the internal components of a solar system from thermal and mechanical stresses. Solar cells are extremely fragile and need a frame to protect them.

The frame also features attachment points for mounting.

The frame should not have sharp edges and should be both electrically and mechanically conductive and earthy.

Can be made from wood, glass, plastic or plywood.

Phase #2 Solar Cells Purchase

Solar Cells Purchase

Solar cells composed of a semiconductor, i.e. silicone, fibre.

Such cells absorb and transform solar power from the sun into a direct current (DC), which then is transformed into AC by an inverter.

This electricity supply is used in our households. The most respectable solar cells are made in either the United States, China or Japan.

There are various suppliers of solar cells. Chinese sellers offer cheaper solar cells but there is no guarantee.

American producers are offering better quality, costly solar cells.

The number of cells you purchase depends on the amount of electricity you want through your solar panel to produce. Some of the points to be considered in the purchase of solar cells are below.

  • Solar cells are extremely vulnerable, so be sure to purchase extras.
  • The solar cells are primarily supplied by the producer with wax for safety. By dropping them into hot but not boiling water, wax can be separated from the cells.
  • Solar cells can also be easily purchased online from stores like eBay or created from scratch at home.
  • Not more than $1-2 per watt should be expected for every cell.
  • Solar cells are about 6 inches wide with varying proportions of the regular solar cell. Each one produces 1.75 watts. You can buy larger solar cells if you want more power.
  • Slightly expensive are the monocrystalline solar cells. Polycrystalline solar cells are the best quality for production.

Phase #3 Creating Holes

Creating Holes

Solar cell tabs can be carried out by welding the wire at the solar cell contact points.

Following are specific steps for tabbing a solar cell:

  • Place your solar cell in a clean room with a downside.
  • Rub the flex pen on the two vertical lines that drive the solar cell up and down. These are called strips of contact.
  • Cut off the tabs, taking account that each piece should have a double the solar cell capacity. If you have a 2-inch-high solar cell, your tabs should take 2×2 = 4-inch long. You should also have your solar cell cut to the tabs.
  • Take the tabs and put them on the contact strips. Tabbing wire is already covered in solder. Sold the soldering wire to the solar cell, and heat the welding iron.

Phase #4 Solar Cell Calibration

Solar Cell Calibration

Solar cells testing is an important task because the efficiency of the entire solar panel can be influenced by a faulty solar cell.

All voltage and current should be measured for the solar cell.

Note on the multimeter the voltage value. A typical solar cell with a voltage of 1.75 watts should have about 0.5 volts.

If the voltage is less than 0.5 volts, it is most likely defective than this particular solar cell.

Phase #5 Preparation of the Front and Secondary Solar Panels

Preparation of the Front and Secondary Solar Panels

The next step is to create the front and back of the panel once the solar cells have been checked.

A transparent sheet of acrylic and a white acrylic sheet is rendered on the front of the stand.

Such two sheets are to be mounted in the solar cells.

The weatherproof, corrosion-resistant and long-lasting acrylic sheets are preferred for this material.

The two sheets have to be identical to the solar panel’s thickness.

When deciding the measurements, it is important to bear in mind that solar cells do not reach each other and between each solar cell, there are about 0.25 inches of extra space.

Leaving room for the system and other wires on the outside edge of the solar panel between 1-2 inches of extra space. Upon measurements of the lengths, break off the two acrylic boards.

Phase #6 Electric Side Visiting

Solar Panels

For general, the charging monitor, battery deep loop, and an inverter are what you need.

It is quite easy to hook them up.

At first, We connected the solar panel connections to the charging controller solar side and hooked that up to the deep cycle battery from the charging controller battery interface side.

We hooked it up from the charger to the inverter and was ready to go.

Phase #7 Apply Plexiglas Including Pressure

Solar Panels

In doing that, we used another collection of the same exterior frame pieces.

We had on the plexiglass floor and put them on top of the plexiglass for equal pressure.

Make careful to steam in the plexiglass gradually so that the glass can not break and make sure that you have twists designed for pressure-treated wood.

Phase #8 Junction Box Mounted

Junction Box Mounted

We finished attaching the plywood back pieces which would support the whole solar panel.

We have also mounted a box on the rear of the solar panel as most solar panels have a joint plate.

As it was observed that, the interconnector box came with a blocking diode that prevents the current from flowing back when the solar panel is hooked to a battery.

Most load controllers already avoid the backflow of current, but you will need to install a blocking diode on a solar panel if the loading controller does not.

Phase #9 Put the Solar Panel Together

Put the Solar Panel Together

The last stage is the assembling of all the pieces. Place the clear acrylic sheet on the top of the solar panel earlier.

Place the whole panel now in stage one container.

The solar panel is ready and you can then check the performance to ensure it works correctly.


Diy Solar Panels are becoming increasingly popular due to the ease of build and installation. People like that they can live off-grid, or just be prepared in case there is another covid pandemic, where they don’t need to rely on others to get their own power. 

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