Solar Fence Charger
Livestock and farms are the biggest food sources on the planet. Without these, the planet could not possibly sustain the population and provide enough food for all of its individuals, which is why it is important for these businesses to be protected at all times from other predators. However, since watching over them 24/7 is not realistic nor practical, their caretakers have to find ways to protect them nonetheless.
If you own a farm or a livestock business near your home with only a few animals or crops to protect from predators, then this is when a solar power fence charger could be really useful. These devices provide protection to these vital food sources without hurting the planet through coal-sourced electricity. Instead, it uses the unlimited power of the sun to operate.
It is just one of the many uses of solar power as an alternative or even replacement for grid-based electricity. This article will, therefore, look at this technology, explain how it works, provide tips on the factors to consider when buying one, lay down its benefits and disadvantages, and list some of the best brands out there.
What Is a Solar Fence Charger?
You may have guessed this but a solar fence charger is a device responsible for providing electrical power to your fence without the need for a grid connection. This will, therefore, keep intruders away from your property and at the same time save you effort in turning the power and off. This will also save you money on paying for electric bills since the fence is not powered by grid-connected electricity.
This is also a useful way to make charged fences work even in remote areas where a grid connection is difficult to install. A solar-powered version is just one of the three types of fence energizers. All types ensure that there’s sufficient electricity input to the connected wires for the current to flow continuously along the fence. Since metal is a conductor, when it is hit by a foreign object, the current will flow from the system to the intruder’s body, giving them from a non-fatal shock of electrocution depending on the length of contact.
The amount of charge will be dependent on the system setup. High-security facilities will most likely require high-voltage fences for protection. This is also a convenient way to protect your property remotely as these devices are low-maintenance and long-lasting, so you’re always at ease anytime, anywhere.
How Do Solar Fence Chargers Work?
How exactly does a solar electric fence work? First, it’s good to start looking at the solar aspect of the system. The sun provides energy to the planet through heat and light. Heat is harnessed by solar thermal systems to supply heat to other appliances or provide insulation to a house or building. As for the light, it is taken advantage of by solar panels. These panels or photovoltaic cells are made of silicon-based crystals that allow absorption of the sun’s light in the form of photons.
These photons trigger electrons to be in an excited state and transform into a flow of current. In a regular, non-solar electric fence, that current will come from the grid through a fossil-fuel sourced energy. Therefore, the sun-sourced system eliminates or reduces the need for such connections and allows the fence to be self-sustaining using the unlimited power of the sun.
Now, let’s look at the electric fence side. The energy harnessed from the sun can be stored in a battery. That charged battery can therefore be the source of electricity for the fence system. This means that the system can operate even at night because of its energy reserve. The electric fence, like a regular one, will create an electric circuit when touched by a conductor like a person or animal.
The solar electric fence energizer, which is a component of the system, transforms the power given off by the system into a short, high-voltage pulse, which makes sense since the system is designed only to warn and not to harm. Together, this security system works to keep intruders out and people or animals in.
How to Choose Solar Power Fence Chargers
Now that we understand how a solar fence charger works, let’s next look at the factors to consider when selecting one for purchase.
Though brand doesn’t always translate to quality, it is still a good factor to consider when buying any product. With trusted brands, you can check consumer feedback and know the strengths and weaknesses of the equipment, so you can make the right choice. For example, Parmak solar power fence chargers have some great reviews and would be a worthy investment to protect your property. Even if you have a limited budget, there are good brands out there at cheap prices.
You need to look at how big your property is and how long the span of the fence is to properly identify the charger with the right range capacity. Range capacity is dependent on the device’s open-circuit voltage and its approximate voltage decreases as the current flows across the wirings. The range rating of the device is determined by multiplying the length of the fence by the number of wires. Then, multiply the product by 2. Once you obtain the range rating, you can check the manufacturer specifications to determine if the product you are eyeing is the right one.
Type of animal
If you’re using the solar electric fence kit for your farm, you want to consider the type of animal you’re protecting and the type of predators you’re protecting your farm from. Huge animals like deer or moose will require 4000 to 5000 volts to be kept out of your property. Cattle and horses can be scared off with about 2000 to 3000 volts. Therefore, look at your product specifications to determine which one suits your fence system.
Voltage will be largely influenced by what you’re protecting and what you’re protecting them from. If you buy a system with a voltage that’s too low, considering the voltage drop, it may not be effective in keeping your property safe. Therefore, it is valuable to check the description of the kit that you’re buying.
Brands that offer warranties are confident in the quality of their product. Look for brands that offer 1-3 years’ worth of warranty and you’re guaranteed to get your money’s worth. For example, Parmak offers a 3-year warranty, which means that you can return it for repair or refund if it malfunctions within that period.
Does the kit already include a battery? If so, what kind of battery does it offer and what is its capacity? How long is the charging time for the battery? Consider the battery life as well because this will be more relevant during low-light months. Also check out low impedance brands as they are effective in preserving your battery levels well.
A unit of energy, the number of joules of a system is its capacity to do work. In an electric fence, it dictates how long of an electric shock the system can release. The higher the joule, the stronger the shock is. Make sure that your charger’s joule output is within permitted standards. Also, check out the UL standards to guarantee the safety of your system.
Now that you have a list of factors to check out, let’s look at the brands we think will be perfect for your fence.
Top 5 Best Solar Fence Chargers
We want you to get the best solar fence charger for your property, so we’ve compiled a list of the best brands out there for you.
5. Red Snap’rESP2M-RS 2-Mile Solar Fence Charger
If you have a 2-mile fence, then Red Snap’s solar charger can enhance your property security and animal control. This 3.35-pound device is perfect for protecting your land from small animals such as rabbits or pets. It has an output of .04 joules and an included battery of 4 volts. It can be used for fences of various types including steel, aluminum, poly wire, poly rope, and poly tape systems.
Manufactured with low impedance technology, its battery drains less quickly, so you can use it for a longer period. This feature also assists in resisting short circuits when the fence touches the weeds beneath. Backed by 60 years of experience in electrical fence design and engineering, the manufacturer also offers a 1-year warranty, so you truly get your money’s worth.
- Not hefty
- Economically priced
- Has an included warranty
- Low impedance
- Has an included battery upon purchase
- Doesn’t provide a strong shock
- Is not as long-lasting as other brands
4. Patriot SolarGuard 155 Fence Energizer
This 0.15 Joule solar guard is a good choice as a starter device. Manufactured in New Zealand, it has a sleek design that’s functional and easy to manage. It can reach up to 1 kilometer and it can produce an output voltage of about 4.7 kilovolts in an open-circuit setup and 2.2 kilovolts at 1000 ohms with only a 15mA consumption.
This device is IPX4-rated waterproof and its installed solar panel can charge a 5-volt battery. What’s even more awesome is that it has a 2-year warranty, so you can have the confidence that it is made to last. It’s super easy to install, and consumer reviews praise its strong zap with its built-in mounting device that slides right onto a T-post. It’s got a smart battery system, so it doesn’t get drained easily.
- Sleek and portable design
- Comes with a 2-year warranty
- Perfect for small-range acreage settings
- Easy to install
- Not suitable for large animals
3. Parmak DF-SP-LI Solar Pak 6
A trusted brand of solar devices, two of the Parmak solar fence chargers are part of our list. DF-SP-LI is a 25-mile range device that’s perfect for small to medium-sized open spaces. It’s got a solid reputation concerning quality, which is strengthened by its 3-year manufacturer warranty. It can charge a 6-volt battery with a significant advantage of charging 42% more than regular fence chargers, which is why it’s preferred for wider spaces.
The fence voltage goes from 500 ohms to 9000 volts with a shock discharge ranging from 0.75-1.6 joules. Since it’s weatherproof, you don’t need to worry about coverage or regular maintenance. The device also features three performance metrics: meter test, solar battery charge level, and voltage output test, which makes monitoring easy and convenient. It is also guaranteed safe with its UL and CAS listing.
- Offers a 3-year warranty
- UL and CAS-listed
- Has a 25-mile coverage
- Has great customer reviews
- May not be effective for large acreage settings
2. Zareba ESP10M-Z 10-Mile
Zareba is also one of the most well-known brands when it comes to electric fence chargers. This can cover a 10-mile weedless distance for steel-wire fences and five miles for poly-wired ones, so it can keep larger animals off of the fence effectively. Its 6-volt battery can be fully charged in only three days, keeping your fence powered for a couple of weeks without needing another recharge.
It can provide up to 0.15 joules of shock, so it can keep cattle and horses in just fine. With its easy-mount build, slotted mounting bracket, and easy-grip screw-on terminal knobs, you can easily hook it in with your ground-rods and your live fence wire, so installing it won’t be a problem. Its simple light indicator lets you know if the fence is live or not. It’s got a 1-year warranty for your peace of mind, too.
- Low impedance
- Has an easy-install structure
- Has a 1-year warranty
- Has a long battery life once fully charged
- Perfect for keeping short-haired animals in
- Not suitable for wider-range properties
1. Parmak Magnum Solar-Pak 12 Low Impedance
Topping our list is another Parmak product with the Mag12. This low-impedance device covers a wider property spreading up to 30 miles. It’s got a 12-volt lead-acid battery that powers up your system day and night. It can give off up to 500 ohms and 6,100 volts with a joule output of 1.1 to 3.1. This American-made product is UL-listed, so you know it’s safe.
It’s got a built-in performance meter that displays your fence condition at a glance. It also has a battery level test, so you can easily tell the device’s power status through its color indicators. The voltage output test lets you know the voltage level availability on your equipment based on your battery level. With its 3-year warranty, you know it’s made to last. Customer reviews also applaud the product’s durability and performance
- Perfect for larger pastures
- Has a bigger battery capacity
- Offers a 3-year manufacturer warranty
- Has battery level and voltage level features
- Customer support is not outstanding
Pros and Cons of Solar Fence Charger
Now that you know what to look for in your sun-powered fence charger and you have a list of the best brands out there, let’s next look at the advantages and disadvantages of using a solar-powered device to protect your fence. Let us first list down the benefits:
- They are more environmentally-friendly
- They can provide energy savings and therefore help cut down on utility costs
- They do not require complex installations as they do not need to be connected to a power line
- They can last for years and require little maintenance
- They are not affected by power outages
- They are perfect for remote areas that do not have easy access to grid connection
- They can function even without sunlight as the energy can be stored in the battery for nighttime use
Now, let’s look at the cons of using solar power for your farm defense equipment:
- Their batteries take days to fully charge
- You may need to purchase a backup battery if it’s not included in the kit
- May not be as functional during low-light days
Managing a farm or protecting your property is not an easy job. If you have numerous animals to take care of, it will be almost impossible to keep an eye on them around the clock. This is to add to the challenge of lurking predators who hunt for your pets and take advantage of the nighttime to prance. This is why it is crucial that you protect them with a fence that keeps them in your property and keeps the pests and predators out.
A solar fence charger can do just the job by powering up your fence to give off shock to anything that comes near it. There are devices for different pasture areas to keep most animals in (or out) 24/7. What’s awesome about them is that they do not require complex installations or annoying wires to be connected to the grid.
Once mounted, they can work around the clock, absorbing sunlight in the day and using up their stored energy to keep your land protected even during the night. Choose from the brand list we’ve provided above and you can have an awesome first buy to take care of your prized properties.