Solar Powered Shed Heating And Lighting

Solar Powered Shed Heating And Lighting Image
Intrigued by the possibilities offered by domestic solar power but not yet ready to plunge in? A DIY solar shed project could be just what you need to dip your toe in the water.

Whenever any new, potentially game-changing technology comes along it's always a good idea to have a firm grasp of what's involved before diving in. And with solar power, the humble garden shed provides an ideal introduction.

A garden shed is perfect as a test subject for all manner of reasons. For a start you can easily locate them any place you choose, away from your house and out of sight, but also in a good spot to capture maximum sunlight.

Then there is the fact that you can pretty much do as you please with a shed, with no requirement to notify your insurer or comply with planning regulations. And if the worst should happen then it's still only a shed and not your home.

Solar technology is broadly categorized into two forms: capturing electrical power or storing thermal energy. Clearly you can always convert heat to power and electricity to heat, but you're best advised not to if possible since that just loses energy along the way.

Solar thermal power is (as the name suggests) about storing the warmth from the sun and then releasing it as required later. There are quite a few ways to store thermal energy, but black painted metal and water are perhaps the most popular.

Creating electricity from the sun requires a solar panel (or several) connected to a rechargeable battery. Photovoltaic cells contained within the panel converts sunlight into electricity which then charges the battery.

Even quite a small shed can accumulate enough power from solar panels mounted on its roof to run decent lighting and possibly even 12v tools and other small electrical appliances. You can choose between purpose made solar shed kits or simply building up the system from separate components.

In the end though, in addition to enhancing your outside space, a solar powered shed is an excellent means of getting yourself more familiar with this ever more pervasive technology.