Has anyone discovered a cheap DIY solar solution for lighting?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by orbirdman, Oct 20, 2009.

  1. orbirdman

    orbirdman Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 25, 2008
    I free range the birds in the yard. One bird heads for the coop once it starts getting dark and i would like the other birds to do that, as it is they hang on the porch right where a window pitches light out. Also i would like to keep egg production up, not worried about the heat issue.

  2. damohomesteaders

    damohomesteaders Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 13, 2009
    NE Alabama
    I bought a cheapo 'light my shed' solar lamp that has a pull cord, and will run continual about 2 hours with a full charge. We just pull the cord in the morning when we are up getting ready for work. This extends the days a little bit for laying purposes. It was a quick fix and helped. We have a small 60w kit solar panel we use for plug ins, small fan, light, etc when needed. Got it for about $400 once we added the deep cycle marine battery. We also placed a couple of solar lamps/spotlights around their pen and under its leanto which seems to help bring the chickens over to their coop at night.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2009
  3. Klorinth

    Klorinth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 3, 2008
    Winnipeg, Manitoba
    I have looked at the same type of shed light. My only issue is that I would like it to come on in the evening for a couple of hoursthen turn off. If I turn it on in the morning before work then it will stay on and use a fair amount of its power during the day, and not have much charge when needed. If it turned off on its own it could then charge fully during the day. I have thought about trying to rig together some solar cells that have a controller, but haven't got that item high on the priority list.
  4. harrisville chicken

    harrisville chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2009
    Northern Utah
  5. rebelcowboysnb

    rebelcowboysnb Confederate Money Farm

  6. Klorinth

    Klorinth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 3, 2008
    Winnipeg, Manitoba

    I some in the shop that I might try. Only problem is that they would be on for something like six hours or more. I would prefer only like 3-4 hours.

    Nothings ever as simple as you might like.
  7. possumqueen

    possumqueen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 17, 2009
    Monroe, North Carolina
    Quote:I had solar lights in my yard, once, and I was disappointed that they didn't stay on for more than an hour or two. Turned out that was because they were in the shade for most of the afternoon and couldn't charge up like they were supposed to. (That's called not reading the instructions on the box when I brought them home. duh!)[​IMG]
  8. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    I've looked at buying solar panels, marine batteries, etc. The total was coming up to a few hundred $$s.

    I think I'm going to try a cheap solar powered walkway light from the hardware store, and just take it apart and put the panel on a post on the south end of the run, and run wire from there back to what I scavenge out of the light. It won't be bright, but it'll be cheap.

    I haven't tried this yet, next trip to the hardware store ...
  9. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    You can get solar spot lights with a remote panel at lowes, home depot & online. I got mine, a set of three (each has 3 LED bulbs) and a remote panel for $29 at Lowes. It goes on a dusk & off a few hours later right now. It is not getting full sun because of the leaves on the trees. It did stay on pretty long in Sept. when it got sun, but I think it was less intense after the first 4-5 hours. Right now it is off in about 2-3. Hopefully the leaves will drop & it will stay on 3-4 most of the time. The three lights put out surprisingly decent light in my 4 by 6 coop. Not ideal, but the best solution I came up with for my movable coop. I like the solar shed light mentioned here, but then I would have to turn it on.
  10. RendonRoo

    RendonRoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2009
    ft. worth
    LED lights are the way to go if your using solar power. A hundred string light puts out an amazing amount of light and could be run inside and out of the coop. A marine battery with a small solar panel(10 to 20 watts) could be used and never run out of power. I've run these lights for more than 100 hrs without recharging.

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