Power is a three part equation. Creation. Management. Storage.
Get any one of the three wrong, and your solution is scrapped. Solar panels create. Electronic power circuits manage. Batteries store. Use the wrong panel with the right other two components and it doesn’t matter how much sunshine you get, it won’t work. Use the right panel with the wrong controller, your battery either won’t get the right juice or will even overcharge.
So the secret is in having the knowledge to combine the three together in the RIGHT manner. Where you gonna get that? At a discount retailer? Not likely. They’ll try but the clerks changeover in the stores so often they keep the nametags for the managers to recognize them, never mind educate about solar! Don’t get me wrong. They can move product, and sometimes tons of it. At the most basic battery maintenance product level, this should not be an issue. But when you get into power systems, beware that it gets dicey.
The more consumers realize that the power equation is not as simple as a “solar calculator” or some chart that shows you power consumption, the more they will understand that they need to work with brands they can trust (unabashed plug!) , with information accessible to help them make their purchase decision or to validate if there’s an issue that comes up. No doubt the mass merchants are great at selling commoditized product or low priced units for simple trickle charging (we know because we supply Walmart with low priced units under the Coleman brand). Yet, if you really want to know what to buy, try the specialist retailer or educational webstore where you can deal direct with a technician. I’d rather to go a West Marine or Camping World or certified recreational vehicle dealer to find out what I need for boating or RV’ing, because I know the team will understand my needs, and also likely still be there if I return to the store. Same goes for solar. These folks get it! They understand that when a customer asks “what do I need”, they need to understand the vehicle’s battery setup, electronics management and only THEN can they suggest the right solar panel combination.
Power. A small word that is more complicated than we give it credit for. Shall we add temperature, light level, humidity and shading to the equation just to complicate it a bit more? What about where you live and the angle of the sun? Still think that a discounter can tell you what you need for your backup power or cottage or sailboat?
Don’t let this scare you. ICP Solar is launching a whole new webservice and support mechanisms that will point you to the right solution in as little as three clicks. We’re also partnering with the specialist retailers mentioned above to bring you innovative solutions that will astound you for their simplicity and value. Their customer service teams and store managers will receive in depth training by our “energizer bunny” sales trainers this fall as we launch a whole new line of product. It’s all coming as part of a tremendous new ICP-wide initiative to take solar offerings to the next level…
Let our power give you freedom.