Letter Re: Solar Power


It seems straightforward to accumulate the beans, bullets, and band aids, and this site has been a tremendous help.

However, solar power seems formidable. Every article I read quickly devolves into talk of how to wire and link things, amps, voltage, et cetera. I am an older professional woman with no mechanical expertise, but I do know that electricity can be dangerous, and I hesitate to do these things myself.

It would be a tremendous help if someone could write an article listing simple plug-and-play systems that could be purchased from reputable companies. If they could do it by price points, it would be even better (e.g., if you have $1,000, buy this – and it will be enough to power these items). In addition, can these systems be left on at an unattended retreat or are they a fire hazard? – prepperdoc

Hugh Replies: Plug-n-play solar systems are expensive. There are things that have to be taken into account, which require technical expertise and is why solar installation is a thriving industry. You basically have two options:

  1. Use a plug-n-play system like Goal Zero or similar. You can get these systems from our advertisers, if you prefer to go that route:

    Don’t be afraid to call them. Each of these companies will ask you questions to learn what your needs are and will make recommendations based on your specific issues. You can certainly tell them you heard about them on SurvivalBlog.

  2. Assemble your own system from components on Amazon or a local supplier. This method is the least expensive, but it is also where all those techie things like “how to wire”, “amps”, “voltage”, “mechanical mounts”, and other things come in. There is no way around it. If you want to save money, you have to learn these things to go this route.

The techie stuff must be taken into account, and you are either going to learn it yourself or pay someone else to do it for you, but it has to be done.