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Author Topic: old solar panels  (Read 921 times)

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Offline farmfromkansas

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old solar panels
« on: March 17, 2019, 12:48:25 PM »
Have set up a reefer trailer with carts and track, now need to get some heat in it.  No Nile for me.  A couple neighbors have given me some solar panels, used to be on roofs for air heat for homes.  One is Solar Gold Inc, have 6 of these, look pretty good, but dirty inside and out. Also have one different panel, the cover is shot, but plan to put a polycarbonate cover on it.  The dirty ones seem to be in good shape, other than the dirty.  Anyone ever rehabbed old solar panels?
Most everything I enjoy doing turns out to be work

Offline Mike W

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Re: old solar panels
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2019, 08:15:55 PM »
Never have rehabbed old panels, just replaced when they reached their life span and were under performing.  Solar panels, especially the older ones, have a finite life span of output, they have improved over the years in extending that life span, but all panels still have this issue, they are not a forever power source.  Not sure what can be done to solar panels to refurbish them, at least on a non manufacturing end user sort of thing.

Then again, I suppose I am presuming these are power panels and not water heater panels with water running through small tubing within an enclosed envelope taking on thermal gain.

I would clean them, and test them before any other expenses put into them.  Last thing I would think you would want is to install them, run all the apparatuses, wiring and such, mounting and all, just to find out they are producing 1/2 or 1/4 of the output you are in need of.

Just a thought  :-\ 

Offline beav

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Re: old solar panels
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2019, 10:20:10 PM »
The OP is referring to panels that heat air.
I would think being clean on the outside of the glass would be sufficient, they would allow the inside air to get warm. Unless the inside of the glass is seriously dirty they will probably work ok. Try replacing the glazing on the one that needs it and see how it compares to the others.
Unless the dirt inside it is light colored, it will probably heat the air up as well as what's under it.
If not does the glass come off reasonably?

Offline farmfromkansas

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Re: old solar panels
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2019, 07:44:13 AM »
One of the old panels has a plastic absorber that has fallen apart.  The covers appear to be glass. Going to have to remove the cover and try to remove the debris, has an aluminum frame to hold the glass down, hope to get it apart without breaking.  Yes, air heating collector.
Most everything I enjoy doing turns out to be work

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