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Homemade Adjustable Solar Panel Rack For Our Tiny House

I made an adjustable solar panel rack to hold four 200 watt solar panels which will power our off grid tiny house. This solar panel mount was made using treated lumber for long life.

 

I used two 4x4 posts at 8 feet long, two 2x6x8 boards, and four 2x4x8 boards. Plus two 7 inch carriage bolts and some washers and nuts. I used 3 inch screws as fasteners. To mount the solar panels I used screws and fender washers.

 

I first had to trim the tree where the solar panel rack would go. It took me all summer to watch the sky and the sun as it moved across the sky to decide where I wanted to put the solar panels. In the end I am very happy that I waited before beginning this project. We moved here in April and I had no idea where the sun would be in relation to trees and obstables in the area.

 

Adjustable solar panel rack with 870 Watts of solar panels

 

Adjustable solar panel rack with 870 Watts of solar panels

 

Now that I have settled on a location, I am very pleased with the results. But I will get back to that.

 

 

 

I dug a hole for the first post and set it into place by putting some dirt back in the hole and tapping it down hard. I used a special tool to level the post in all directions.

 

Setting solar panel rack posts in the ground

 

Setting solar panel rack posts in the ground

 

I then used a compass and a board to find true due South on the compass. I put the compass perpendicular to the board and angled the board so its length was facing South. This gave me the position of the next post.

 

I set the second post in place and then used a 2x6 to ensure that it was level with the first post, making the tops even with one another.

 

Leveling posts for solar panel rack

 

Leveling posts for solar panel rack

 

Then I built a frame for the solar panel rack on the ground using two full lenth 2x6 boards and two 2x4 boards cut to size.

 

I drilled holes in the 4x4 posts at four inches down and centered for the hinge points. Then I centered holes on the rack frame as well.

 

Making the solar panel rack frame

 

Making the solar panel rack frame

 

I put the carriage bolts in place and my wife helped me mount the frame onto the posts.

 

Mounting the solar panel rack on its posts

 

Mounting the solar panel rack on its posts

 

Next I put the second two boards in the middle of the frame. These will hold the solar panels in place and prevent sagging with time.

 

And then I put the solar panels themselves onto their new rack. The first two went on with ease because I used two of the end scraps of 2x4 to make a shelf for the solar panels to sit on. I used the screws and fender washers to secure them in place.

 

Mounting the solar panels on their adjustable rack

 

Mounting the solar panels on their adjustable rack

 

 

The next two solar panels were a bit more effort to get in place but I managed and then secured them as well.

 

I wired up the bottom two solar panels and connected them to my existing control electronics and inverter. An extension cord goes to the tiny house where we power some devices as needed.

 

I hope to finish building my battery box soon and get the other two solar panels wired up.

 

 

You can watch today's video here: Watch the video now  Building Adjustable Solar Panel Rack For Our Tiny House Power

 

While you are over there please subscribe to my YouTube channel and follow our daily videos as we strive to become self sufficient and off the grid on a budget.

 

Feel free to ask any questions or get help with your project on our Discussion and support forum


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Troy Reid

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