the Solar Cell

It would be tough to call today’s job a project.  It took about 10 minutes to fix and an $8 usd part from the hardware store.

Here is the problem!  It’s the middle of the day and the carriage lights on both side of my garage are still on.  Their both on an automatic solar cell that is supposed to turn them off in the morning and back on at night.  But it’s obviously not working.

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Here is the box panel located on the south side of the house.  If you have a similar system, look on the southern side of your home first. That is likely where the builder would have located the box (at least in the United States).

Notice the size of the opening on the end.  It’s not larger than about 1/4 inch (3 or 4mm).  The replacement I purchased is about twice that size in order to let more light on to the solar cell.IMG_1308

It’s a simple procedure to replace the solar cell.  Take a screw driver and remove the top and bottom screws.  Inside you will find the back of the solar cell with three wires: red, black and white.

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After TURNING OFF THE POWER at your circuit breaker box, simply unscrew the red wire from black (loaded) wire and attached the red wire from your new cell.  Do the same for the white and black leads.

The old cell should be held on with a screwed on ring with a foam piece of the weather-stripping between the ring and panel cover.  This should unscrew by hand if it’s to tight, you could use a pair of pliers.   In the picture below, I have removed the old cell and replaced with the new larger cell.  The plastic locking ring and weather-stripping are shown before installation.

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Here is the new cell installed and the panel cover replaced.  You can clearly see the larger opening.  I’ll wait for nightfall to see if everything is working OK. (oh, and don’t forget to turn the power back on).

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