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Old 12-20-2017, 02:46 PM  
nealtw
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If I remember right the solar panel was pumping out a constant 12v or 24v DC (can't remember now which one) as long as there was good sun. So the likely culprit in my situation was the battery. However I did change it out for a new one so I don't think that much has changed in the last 2/3 years with batteries in this application. However if it has it might be worth your dime to upgrade your battery to the new "hotness". That might keep you from running into what I had.
You can rent those 18" or 32" ditch witches from Home Depot now(at least in my area and we are somewhat rural). You still have to hand dig where you have existing lines but manual trenching is for the birds. I crossed a phone line, water line, and gas line with my trench. Though now that I think about it my water line was 6'+ down so I never crossed it I just dug down to confirm and didn't go down any farther then my test holes. I called the locator service had them come out then hand dug to find and confirm. Then I stopped my trenching at about 2ft from my lines and hand dug from the trench to the line. It's easier to hand dig when you have a trench already dug within 2 ft. The ground in my area is rock hard about 6" to 10" so getting under it and chipping into the trench makes it way easier.
Anyway I should stop trying to convince you to run a hard line! But I guess if your solar does make you nuts then you can always come back here for this info.
Depending on the experience from the first installation, she could add another battery or another panel if needed. If that was still easier or cheaper than hard wiring.


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Old 12-20-2017, 06:40 PM  
zannej
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Thanks for the input. I really appreciate it.

I'm not sure where my phonelines run or how deep they are. That is something to consider. My waterlines are not all that deep. My soil is sandy loam and clay with an abundance of tree roots. Basically, most of the state I live in used to be a delta. I don't plan to dig too deep. How deep are phonelines usually buried?

I'm really hoping that my friends will have time to get a lot of stuff done before they have to leave (I think one of them has to work at 4pm) tomorrow. They were going to test some of the wiring and also check on the gate posts to see if they can be reinforced. My sister's flight comes in a little after 6pm so I'll probably have to leave around 4, run the truck through the car wash, and so forth.

I have to say that I'm very pleased with the new LED shop lights. Only put up 3 out of the 4 because the outlets or wiring in the shop is not getting power where I wanted to plug in the 4th one. Old lights were fluorescent and dim. New ones are very bright and just 2 lights made a huge difference.


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Old 12-22-2017, 12:36 AM  
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Just went and got the lag bolts today. They have a "washerhead"-- built in washer. We couldn't find them at first so I pulled out my phone and looked up the bolts on homedepot's website (I forgot to write down the aisle and bay number beforehand). Found the ones on the list and then started searching. They were in a bin on the very bottom shelf. My back hates me today so it let out a big Grumpy Cat "Nope" on bending down to get it. Fortunately, my mother was with me in a riding cart so she could reach it.

So, now we have what we need to make it function (aside from the post stabilizing/replacement).

Will I need special connectors for the battery though?
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Old 12-22-2017, 08:51 AM  
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depends on the battery. Mine had the crimp type you push on the terminal. I'm going through past comments to see if you posted what battery you got. I attached a picture of what mine looked like from google. If your battery is in a weather proof enclosure those should work fine. If not you might want to wrap them or buy some kind of exterior grade ones.

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Just went and got the lag bolts today. They have a "washerhead"-- built in washer. We couldn't find them at first so I pulled out my phone and looked up the bolts on homedepot's website (I forgot to write down the aisle and bay number beforehand). Found the ones on the list and then started searching. They were in a bin on the very bottom shelf. My back hates me today so it let out a big Grumpy Cat "Nope" on bending down to get it. Fortunately, my mother was with me in a riding cart so she could reach it.

So, now we have what we need to make it function (aside from the post stabilizing/replacement).

Will I need special connectors for the battery though?
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Old 12-22-2017, 08:57 AM  
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I couldn't find if you posted which battery you ordered. So you might have to wait till it shows up, or post a link in here and I'll try to get back to you.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:19 AM  
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depends on the battery. Mine had the crimp type you push on the terminal. I'm going through past comments to see if you posted what battery you got. I attached a picture of what mine looked like from google. If your battery is in a weather proof enclosure those should work fine. If not you might want to wrap them or buy some kind of exterior grade ones.
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I couldn't find if you posted which battery you ordered. So you might have to wait till it shows up, or post a link in here and I'll try to get back to you.
Thank you!
What are those things called? (I'm woefully ignorant when it comes to this sort of thing).

I got this battery: https://www.amazon.com/35AH-Battery-...dp/B00QGLAHWS/

And this box https://www.amazon.com/UPG-40790-Bla...dp/B003BMCL4M/ with 2 external 12 VDC auxiliary plugs



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