66% or better

Solar powered lawnmower


Our post about what it takes to convert your home to solar power probably put you in a green mood, but if you want to start with something smaller, check out this guide on how to add a solar panel to your lawnmower.

You will need a battery-powered lawnmower for this, as well as a 12-volt solar charger with a car lighter jack. This easy hack mainly involves a small amount of work with the wiring; the car lighter jack must be removed from the solar panel so that the wires can be attached to the batteries. Yeah, that’s it. We’d love to see a more elegant solution since the way it is now you have switch the wiring from parallel to series everytime you want to mow.

For a more complete lawnmower hack, check out this remote control lawnmower.

Comments

  1. Joel Sullivan says:

    This is crap. That cheap amorphous panel is most likely rated at 5 watts. There is —no–possible–way— that solar panel is going to charge those batteries in 4 to 6 hours. Try more like 2 weeks.

    This material really should be reviewed by someone before it gets posted.

  2. fartface says:

    Exactly that is complete crap. I have 4 of those panels and they barely charge a set of AA batteries in 4 hours.

  3. mark says:

    I agree with previous comments. That panel likely produces about 0.3 amps at full capacity.

    The motor would need to be at least 1HP to cut grass. 1HP = 746 watts. 746w/24v = 31a Not that a 5w panel could even reach the amperage to get any decent amp hour battery up to charge, but if it could then it would take about 104 hours to replace 1 hour of usage if there was 100% conversion efficiency. You can guess the chance of 100% conversion efficiency.

    At best that panel would keep the batteries in float in between uses after they had been charged.

  4. Alan says:

    I can see this idea finding its way to mass market. Most people cut the grass once per week or so. I could see having a panel on the roof of the garage and a sinple cable connection to the mower (parked in the garage)

  5. cWatters says:

    instead of removing the lighter plug, he could have used a lighter socket kit. I have one on my riding mower, and use a panel like this to keep the battery topped off. It’s mounted on the top of the shed and routed down.

  6. Jason says:

    Well, there are a couple variables you guys are not considering. You are assuming the motor is under full load all the time for this hour, and that he using the mower for an hour. by the fact he has an electric mower he must have a small yard. While I agree I would want more power, I am sure this is a good platform to play around with solar.

    another interesting one.
    http://www.appropedia.org/Solar_Charged_Lawnmower

  7. wogga says:

    This is an old thread, but wanted to say, I have connected 2 5watt similar panels in parallel and get about 650mA charge at about 20 volts open circuit which I connect into my 12v black and decker ’4hp’ mower. It has a 26 Ah battery and seems to be happily run after a week of charging (this spring).

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