Expired Hot Deals

Costco

120 Watt Solar Panel Kit - $200

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 29th, 2022 12:39 pm
Sr. Member
Dec 11, 2008
973 posts
570 upvotes
Toronto
theflyingsquirrel wrote: DC or AC, in order to get to 1500W, you still need 125A on the DC end. You cannot create power from nothing.
And it is not including the loss from inverter. If it is 80% efficient, you need 1875W.
So 156A to be safe.
How long is your run, inches, feet, yards?
Considering that 1/0 gauge wire is about $1.74 a foot and there are many continuous use 1500W-2300W DC to AC inverters for a few hundreds or less. It's not that big a deal running greater than 125A on short runs.

Look up a wire sizing chart for reference.
Jr. Member
Dec 27, 2011
184 posts
250 upvotes
Sherwood Park
sks8100 wrote: I know its more expensive but how does the Coleman compare to something like this?
https://www.amazon.ca/BLUETTI-Portable- ... 13&sr=8-40

sorry I'm totally new to this but would like to dabble. Researching slowly but appreciate opinions of more seasoned folks here.
Ignore the Marketing crap about efficiency and such.. At these small sizes it really doesn't amount to a hill of beans.

The panel you linked to is specifically designed to hook up to a BlueTTI portable power station. Its a good panel, nice and light and in an attractive portable package. Although you are paying for that (and paying a lot).

With a quality portable power station, it doesn't matter what panel you hook up to them. They have their own built in MPPT controllers and can use a wide range of panels. I hook my power station up to a no-name, bought off amazon 100W panel. It charges it just fine.

The big thing you need to understand is how much power these little stations have. Its not much. Its basically like carrying around 2 big laptop batteries (unless you buy a big Wh station). You aren't running microwaves, fridges, coffee makers or toasters. They are really meant for charging phones, drones, laptops and running LED lights. We use ours (300wh) to run all the lights in our cabin and get about 2 nights before it needs recharging! If I plug the solar panel in during the day, then I can essentially run my lights forever as long as its sunny during the day!
Deal Addict
Mar 2, 2017
2001 posts
1612 upvotes
travellerw wrote: Ignore the Marketing crap about efficiency and such.. At these small sizes it really doesn't amount to a hill of beans.

The panel you linked to is specifically designed to hook up to a BlueTTI portable power station. Its a good panel, nice and light and in an attractive portable package. Although you are paying for that (and paying a lot).

With a quality portable power station, it doesn't matter what panel you hook up to them. They have their own built in MPPT controllers and can use a wide range of panels. I hook my power station up to a no-name, bought off amazon 100W panel. It charges it just fine.

The big thing you need to understand is how much power these little stations have. Its not much. Its basically like carrying around 2 big laptop batteries (unless you buy a big Wh station). You aren't running microwaves, fridges, coffee makers or toasters. They are really meant for charging phones, drones, laptops and running LED lights. We use ours (300wh) to run all the lights in our cabin and get about 2 nights before it needs recharging! If I plug the solar panel in during the day, then I can essentially run my lights forever as long as its sunny during the day!
Yeah for us it’s really the kids electronics, maybe a toaster or coffee maker and our phones. I don’t anticipate anything beyond this to be honest. My bigger question is whether these panels can connect to thay and whether people have used them for camping. I don’t own an RV nor do I plan to get one but we do like to camp a few times a year and I can use my car to charge here and there but prefer something that I can charge and reuse
Jr. Member
Dec 27, 2011
184 posts
250 upvotes
Sherwood Park
sks8100 wrote: Yeah for us it’s really the kids electronics, maybe a toaster or coffee maker and our phones. I don’t anticipate anything beyond this to be honest. My bigger question is whether these panels can connect to thay and whether people have used them for camping. I don’t own an RV nor do I plan to get one but we do like to camp a few times a year and I can use my car to charge here and there but prefer something that I can charge and reuse
Toaster and Coffee Maker are out for these small units. A coffee maker draws 500-700W when cycled on. A toaster draws 1200W. Bigger units can run those devices, but they are bigger, more expensive and heavier. Even then, they can't run those items for long (a coffee maker for like 70min). Panels wouldn't matter as you couldn't carry enough panels to recharge that kind of power.

Sure, loads of people use these for camping (tons and tons of posts in camping forums). Loads of people also hook up panels too them (all different brands and sizes). They run lights, laptops, phone chargers, small TVs, stereos, ect! Just no high draw devices. If you are looking for the conveniences of home and being able to just plug stuff in and not worry about power, then this is not it.

P.S. yes you could hook the Coleman panels up to one of those power stations.. but that would be a waste as you could buy a 100W renogy panel for 1/2 the price and get essentially the same power.
Member
User avatar
Aug 29, 2001
464 posts
223 upvotes
Toronto
travellerw wrote: The panel you linked to is specifically designed to hook up to a BlueTTI portable power station. Its a good panel, nice and light and in an attractive portable package. Although you are paying for that (and paying a lot).
I agree - way overpriced for what it is and I would never buy it

to be fair, it does provide MC4 connectors though which was a surprise to me for a 'branded' suitcase panel
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Jun 6, 2010
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Canuck_TO wrote: How long is your run, inches, feet, yards?
Considering that 1/0 gauge wire is about $1.74 a foot and there are many continuous use 1500W-2300W DC to AC inverters for a few hundreds or less. It's not that big a deal running greater than 125A on short runs.

Look up a wire sizing chart for reference.
Yes 1/0 awg should work, but another factor is the maximum output current of the battery. Need to get one with high output rate.
If I buy something that is not in deep discounted, my father will punish me; everyone will laugh at me. I will be the strange kid who doesn't fit in.
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Sr. Member
Dec 25, 2012
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Ontario
Solar is a fad. Coal, oil and gas is the future.
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Oct 20, 2004
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micromen wrote: Solar is a fad. Coal, oil and gas is the future.
I know you're joking... otherwise please come out from your cave lol

Upvoted for using solar. Clean and free energy seems good to me.
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 19, 2021
75 posts
401 upvotes
wpgthug wrote: Anyone have a thought on how long this would take to charge up a boat battery and trolling motor battery. Or if it would even work well? We don’t have power at our dock and this might be a good option. Thanks
there are some peeps who will make a canopy and mount panels on top for all day power for their motors (see vid below)

the costco 27m battery is 120amphr x 12v = 1400watts
say you run it down about 40% during an afternoon of fishing, that is 560 watts used
in a perfect environment that is 560watts used divided by 120watt panel = 4.67 hours to recharge
but reality is, on a good sunny day 6 hours should get a full charge
depending on your charge controller you can monitor power coming in (not the one in the costco system though)

[OP]
Newbie
Jul 19, 2021
75 posts
401 upvotes
sks8100 wrote: I was thinking of getting a solar panel for camping. However I wanted to connect to a solar generator. I dont plan to carry around a 12V battery. Anybody know if this would charge a solar generator?

Also this doesnt appear to be monocrystaline which I believe is the most efficient.
a solar generator is a 12v battery, but also integrates the charge controller and inverter
but you pay much more than buying the components separately (or in a kit like this and adding a batt), plus your opportunity to troubleshoot is pretty much nil
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Mar 2, 2017
2001 posts
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timestop wrote:
a solar generator is a 12v battery, but also integrates the charge controller and inverter
but you pay much more than buying the components separately (or in a kit like this and adding a batt), plus your opportunity to troubleshoot is pretty much nil
Yeah that’s fair tho by the sounds of it the charge controller and inverter are pretty basic and prob not the greatest for expensive gear. I don’t have an issue forking over a little more for the convenience of carrying around less things and slightly more superior quality. 200 is a good deal I suppose for the basic setup but for me I think it’s not going to work

The only other usecase I can think of it mounting the solar panel on top of my gazebo to power some fans rather than running an extension cord in the backyard. It would be separate from my camping usecase all together to which I’d buy something different and leave this as a permanently fixed panel

For the battery are there enclosures to keep it safe from the rain and kids if sitting outside all year round?
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Nov 1, 2017
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Is this a hot deal?

Would I want to buy these panels even though I have no immediate use for them?
Last edited by PerformingAzura on Jan 19th, 2022 11:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Feb 8, 2014
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timestop wrote:
stick to burying nuts my friend, you are not making sense here

i lived completely offgrid in canada for a dozen years, 2 person full-time household with all the normal household amenities
my system was 600watts solar and a 500watt wind turbine with a 1440amphr battery bank
That is very impressive.
I am interested in more details, how did you handle heating/cooling and cooking?
I am also curious on why such a large battery bank?
aptar wrote: We have a Tesla power wall and dreams of roof mounted solar but I've given up because I don't want to mess with our aging concrete tile roof. I should just quickly back out of this thread, right, and not consider this option for a second?
Pole or ground mounted solar may be a better option if you have space for it.
How much did it cost for the powerwall installed?
Do you have one or multiple?
sks8100 wrote:
sorry yes by solar generator I mean jackery or bluetti
They are portable powerbanks (instead of solar generators).
The price will continue falling with competition as their profit margin is quite large.

That said almost all have the ability to connect solar with the right connector (built in charge controller and inverter).
And you have many options, the 700W option seems better to me on sale.

Add a 200-300W solar panel and for just over $1000 have a small off grid power station.
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Feb 8, 2014
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For anyone who bought that Renogy 100W soda can powerbank this would be almost perfect as is, just add a USB charger to plug into the included inverter and you got solar, battery and 120V (100W) output.
In fact in Rand McNally they wear hats on their feet and hamburgers eat people
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Jan 13, 2009
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flame02 wrote: Upvoted for using solar. Clean and free energy seems good to me.
why do you think solar is "clean"? Compared to what? Did you factor in how much stuff goes "wrong" during the full production cycle including production of panels, batteries etc? Nuclear for example comes with certain unquantifiable risks due to unforseen catastrophic events. But when it doesn't cause Chernobyl, nuclear is actually extremely clean and very very sustainable. Certainly solar is cleaner than burning fossil fuels. So if that's your point of comparison then sure
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Jan 6, 2019
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Upvoted because I like home science experiments even if a generator can do this - it’s just not as fun!
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Jan 30, 2010
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PerformingAzura wrote: Is this a hot deal?

Would I want to buy these panels even though I have no immediate use for them?
It might be a good deal for someone with an RV that camps off grid. Everything needed to connect it to an RV battery is included in the box and the panel has a built in stand.
For home or backup use I don't think it is worth it, that size panel will only generate about a total of 1kwh of electricity during a sunny summer day, about 13 cents worth of power.
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