What will the SolMan run?
The SolMan can power any small to medium-sized 115-VAC/60 Hz electrical appliance or tool that draws up to a continuous 1000 watts (8.5 amps) and a 1500 watt (12 amp) surge. The lower the electrical draw of the appliance, the longer the SolMan will power it. The SolMan will also power most 12V DC (automotive and RV type) appliances.
The type and size of your electricity needs will determine what SolMan unit is appropriate for you. The SolMan Action Packer will power your small energy needs. The SolMan Classic will power your efficient medium-sized energy needs. The SolMan Lithium Deluxe will power your efficient full-sized energy needs.
How long will the SolMan run?
You can estimate yourself using various run time calculators found on the internet. One example is found at http://www.donrowe.com/inverters/inverter_faq.html#how_long
Remember: The SolMan cannot power any AC device over 1000 watts (8.5 amps) continuous, 1500 watts (12 amps) surge at 110 VAC/60 Hz. However, custom solutions are available up to about 2kw AC output.
To make your own estimate for the SolMan using the battery capacity only (without considering additional solar input you might get during the day):
For 12 VDC loads around 4.5 amps and less
Divide 1000 watt-hours by rated wattage of the equipment to get the approximate number of hours it takes to run the battery down.
For AC loads around 0.5 amps and less at 110 VAC
Divide 900 watt-hours by the rated wattage.
For 12 VDC loads around 7-12 amps
Divide 890 watt-hours by the rated wattage
For AC loads around 1- 2 amps at 110 VAC
Divide 720 watt-hours by the rated wattage
For 12 VDC loads around 20 amps
Divide 820 watt-hours by the rated wattage
For AC loads around 2-3 amps at 110 VAC
Divide 740 watt-hours by the rated wattage
For AC loads as high as 6.5 amps at 110 VAC
Divide 600 watt-hours by the rated wattage
Depending on the size of the solar array, location and season, your incoming solar wattage could range add on average from 1080 watt-hours (one 135 watt panel with 8 hours of sun) to 3240 watt-hours (three 135 watt panels with 8 hours of sun.
How long does it take to recharge the battery?
Charging time depends on the number of photovoltaic panels, and the location of the SolMan and the season.
To fully charge the battery from a 50% depth-of-discharge, it takes anywhere from 6 hours (three 135 watt panels) to 18 hours (one 135 watt panel) of sunlight. Time to recharge can be further reduced by charging from a standard AC outlet or off of a gas generator.
You can use the maps on the Renewable Resource Data Center web site to estimate how much power you can get in your area. http://rredc.nrel.gov/solar/old_data/nsrdb/redbook/atlas/Table.html
Very simply, locate the region you live in on the map and determine how much total solar energy/area your region receives on an annual basis. Take that number and multiply by 48.4 to determine how many watt-hours per day you can receive from the SolMan. You can play around with other maps at that site to determine how much energy you might get for a given site.
Remember, the SolMan is so portable that you can increase your solar tracking by 30% by simply turning the SolMan 90 into the sunlight to capture morning, noon and afternoon sun.
The electricity coming directly from the SolMan’s battery storage is the same you get from your car. The electricity coming through the inverter is just like the electricity coming from household wall sockets. Use the same care and caution you would with utility power. All of the SolMan electrical components are safe as long as they are treated with respect. Solar electricity is used all over the world, every day. From an environmental standpoint, solar electricity is about the safest kind of electricity there is.
The SolMan will run lights, small appliances such as fans, mixers, blenders, small microwaves, computers & laptops, stereos, television & dvd players, charge powered hand tools such as drills, saws, water pumps & purification, and recharge NiMH batteries for cell phones, laptop computers, flashlights, and portable communication devices.
The SolMan will not run devices over 15 amps DC and 12 amps (continuous) AC. This includes items with heating elements like space heaters, hair dryers and coffee pots, items with sizeable compressors like air conditioners or large refrigerators*, and items with sizeable motor draw like large saws or other large tools. But please contact us with your needs, we can provide a wide range of custom solutions. If you are powering laser printers or other highly sensitive electrical equipment, you should get the True Sine Wave version.
*Note, the SolMan will run some energy efficient appliances, such as SunFrost refrigerators, or other newer “Energy Star” rated appliances. Older refrigerators (up to 1000 watts) can run temporarily on the SolMan for back-up power.
Yes. The SolMan stores electrical energy in the battery so you can use it at any time. The unit will run until the batteries are at their low voltage cut-off point, which protects them from complete depletion, so they will last longer and come back up to full power. You can also charge the batteries from a standard AC wall outlet or on a gas generator.
If you aren't charging and using your SolMan on a regular basis, you should re-charge the battery every month. If you are storing the SolMan, you should make sure the batteries are fully charged before storing it.
Your solar panel will provide a faster charge if the glass is free of dirt, dust or debris.
You can maximize the solar charge rate by keeping the solar panel(s) faced towards the sun. Our mobile design makes this very easy to do. Just roll the SolMan to face the right direction and then tilt the panel to face the sun. You can further increase your solar capture by turning the SolMan 90 to catch morning, noon and afternoon sun.
You can also get more out of your units by using energy efficient appliances. For example, compact fluorescent light bulbs use about 75% less energy than a conventional incandescent bulbs, while LED lighting uses even less energy than CFLs!
Yes! Reflected, or diffused light works well for solar recharging, it just takes a little longer for the battery to fully charge. See the Renewable Resource Data Center web site to estimate how much power you can get in your area. http://rredc.nrel.gov/solar/old_data/nsrdb/redbook/atlas/Table.html
SolMan Mobile Solar generators are manufactured with outdoor rated or marine use components, so everything exposed is designed to be used outdoors. All eternal plugs have covers and are set up for outdoor use, even in the rain, and all critical components are inside and protected from the weather as long as the unit is closed. The panels themselves have been tested by the manufacturer for thermal, freezing, and high humidity, hail impact, wind and salt mist, and water exposure. If you are expecting heavy storms or plan to store the unit for extended periods, we do recommend covering the unit to extend its life.
You can find some Sun Frost energy efficient refrigerators/freezers and LED lighting on our website.
The SolMan loads easily into a minivan or truck using ramps. The SolMan can be tilted to lie flat for clearance inside a minivan. If your model includes 2-3 photovoltaic panels, the additional panels are easily removed in 5 minutes and packed flat.
SolSolutions does manufacture the SolMan Action Packer model (1000 watts) that will fit into the trunk of a passenger car.
Depending on your tax status (business or resident), how you are using your SolMan, and the state that you live in, you have a range of tax incentives at your disposal. By taking advantage of these opportunities, you can cut the cost of these units up to 30%. Check the federal, state, and municipal options available to you at http://www.dsireusa.org/ and discuss with your tax preparer.
Please visit our website on a regular basis. We will be updating the general information base on solar energy.
Another site we recommend is http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/solar.html for information on solar, energy usages, appliance specific information, and a number of handy energy calculators.