While electric motors are a much better option than gas motors (both for the environment AND our health), using electric still relies on the power plants who send that electric. The only way to be COMPLETELY green is to use solar panels, not just on your house (if you can afford it), but on many other things as well, including boats. Here are a few of the best solar panels for your boats…
Go Power! GP-SF-5 Sun Film 5W Marine Solar Panels
The physical design of this Chinese-made panel is much the same as any other model for industrial use, however, this is a far superior model. Not only is the Go Power! usable for charging vehicles like carts, ATV’s, snowmobiles, and even handheld electronic devices, this panel can also be used to charge boat batteries.
The vast array of vehicles/items you can charge with this panel already makes this one of the better, more popular options for powering your motor boat. It also requires almost no maintenance, which only sweetens the deal. Furthermore, its LED indicator can also signal the percentage of the battery to alert you to any battery drainage. Its dimensions also lend to its huge popularity amongst boaters, which are 13.25″ x 0.5″ x 0.5″, with a weight of 3 pounds. This lean and light solar panel is certainly one of the better options on the market nowadays.
Sun Force 50022 5-Watts Solar Battery Trickle Charger
The most evident feature of the Sun Force 50022 is its durability, as it features an aluminium frame and a surface made of amorphous silicon. It’s also protected by a layer of ABS plastic that will prevent external damage, therefore guaranteeing a long life for this solar panel. Much like the previously mentioned model, Sun Force 50022 is water proof and easy to install. However, a feature that sets it apart is its built-in protection against overcharging and/or discharging.
Flexibility of use is another attractive feature, as it includes a 12-volt battery. Its battery clamps and mounting hardware permit easy installation. Thanks to the amorphous silicon cells, it won’t discharge after sunset, which is a weakness still shared by many models currently on the market. In terms of dimensions, this panel is calculated at 18″ x 1.5″ x 14″ and weighs 4.2 pounds. While somewhat larger and heavier than Go Power!’s model, Sun Force can still be considered within the small range, which makes it easy to manage.
Renogy 100W 12V Mono Crystalline Marine Solar Panels
This Thailand-manufactured model remains one of the best reviewed on the market, and it’s easy to see why. This high-performance solar cell generates electricity from the ultra rays of the sun. And while the Renogy’s efficiency still depends greatly on sunlight availability, this model boasts a high conversion rate with an ideal output of 500 watt hours per day, and a guarantee of no hot spots during heating. The durability of this solar panel are a product of its build, made up of lamination sheets.
Much like the previous models, there is a great flexibility in the uses for this panel, as it can be used on camping, traveling and domestic uses. Something else to consider is the model’s resiliency, as it can withstand heavy snow and strong winds, making it a faithful companion against the restless seas. In terms of dimensions, this panel is considerably larger and heavier than the other two models, at 39.7″ x 26.7″ x 1.4″ and weighs 16.5 pounds. However, this is still a small downside to a highly efficient panel.