"The right tool for the job makes all the difference."
'The right tool for the job makes all the difference'
We've all heard that bit of wisdom thousands of times. And it's no different for a Solar Electric (PV) system installation than for anything else. Fortunately, most of the tools needed for a PV install are commonly used and easily found. There are very few highly specialized tools. Below are several lists that describe many of the tools needed for an installation. They are broken out into functional groups for site assessment, installation and maintenance. Most of the specialized tools fall into the site assessment and maintenance categories; the installation tools are probably already in your tool box!
||50-100 ft. tape measure|
|Solar Pathfinder (evaluates the solar energy potential at a site)|
|Compass (not needed if you're using a Solar Pathfinder)|
|Maps (reference for location latitude and magnetic declination)|
||Cordless drill (14.4V or greater), multiple batteries|
||Chalk line||Hole saw|
|Unibit and multiple drill bits (wood, metal, masonry)||
||Torque wrench with deep sockets|
|Nut drivers (most common PV sizes are 7/16", 1/2", 9/16")||
||Large cable cutters|
||Small cable cutters||Hacksaw|
||Blanket, cardboard or black plastic to keep modules from going "live" during installation|
||Heavy duty extension cords||Fuse Pullers|
|DC clamp-on ammeter||Reciprocating saw / Jig saw|
|Large crimpers||Conduit bender|
||Hydrometer or Refractometer||
||Baking Soda (to neutralizer any acid spills)|
|Small flashlight (to view electrolyte level)||Turkey Baster|
|Rubber gloves||Distilled Water|