Solar chicken coop update

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Lots of updates recently on things. Need some new projects right? Anyways, so I had purchased a number of LEDs for the solar setup I have in our chicken coop. They are about 3 watts a piece and put out about 180 lumens a piece. The advantage to LEDs of course is:

  • Less heat for the light produced so less wasted energy
  • Instant light. In winter cfls can take some time to warm up
  • Fully solid state so in theory they don't burn out although in actual fact they do after a while…
  • They run off 12 volts. They don't need 120volts

So they are perfect for solar projects. I have however found that you can purchase newer LEDs these days that are much brighter for the similar wattage. Example, I have a Philips led shown here. It's a 12.5 watt light, at 800 lumens output. Compared to 4 of my led squares I bought off ebay it is MUCH brighter. It does run off 120 of course so I need to waste energy using a small inverter to go from 12 volt to 120… The quality of the lighting though outweighs that small amount of energy used up for the inverter and the consumption as compared to my straight 12 volt LEDs is pretty much equals. So for my money I think the more commercial type led bulbs are going to be the winners in my chicken shed. They aren't cheap though, I think that Philips was atleast 20 bucks though they are getting cheaper all the time.

I'm currently using a 75 watt inverter, that's my next thing to upgrade. And overall the system is still maintenance free save the cleaning of fresh snow from the panels and has not failed me yet” brilliant system, totally self sufficient. It's great to know even in a power outage I can go down there and I have my own little power generation facility. Next step for that is to wire it to my house for auxiliary power in a pinch


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