Best Money Tips: How I Built a Solar Panel for $100

By Linsey Knerl on 24 February 2010 (Updated 17 April 2010) 6 comments

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips roundup. Today, we share tips for building a solar panel for under a hundred bucks, ways to save money on your nylon purchases, and unique apples for a killer cider!

Top 5 Articles

How I Built a Solar Panel for $100: You Can, Too! — Check out this nifty tutorial for harnessing the sun’s power for electricity — without breaking the bank. Off-Grid

7 Ways to Save on Hosiery — Before you panic about that runner in your stockings, check out this brilliant list of ways to save on your next nylon purchase! Coupon Sherpa

How to Manage Your files Behind a Firewall for Free — Not able to access email, Google, or Facebook from school or work due to cumbersome firewalls? Skip the flash drive and go with these simple tips. Lost in Technology

Unique Apples and Artisan Ciders — If you’re itching to try something new and delicious, this post shares so much information about the different types of rare apples! Learn about the craft of artisan ciders, and get ready for next year’s crop of fruit. Mother Earth News: Relish

Know Where to Draw Money for Emergencies — You need cash fast! Where do you go? This post breaks down the pros and cons for typical methods of getting some scratch (and a few you may not have considered.) Money Ning

Other Essential Reading

How to Handle Requests for Financial Advice — It’s true that many people just want to you tell them what they want to hear! Find out the true reason behind requests for money advice before you open your mouth! Consumerism Commentary

8 Best Fitness and Diet Smart Phone Apps — It’s not too late to start the New Year healthy! These apps top our list of must-download tools for getting trim and slim before swimsuit season. My Life Scoop

How to Earn $100 an Hour (or Save $100,000 In Your Lifetime) — Is the art of clipping coupons worth much? The Wall Street Journal thinks so… get to their line of thinking in this interesting discussion. WSJ via Free Money Finance

Popular Money Advice You Shouldn’t Take — Yikes! We’ve heard these all too often. Too bad they're a dead-end to some potentially horrible consequences. Read and avoid them here. Crosswalk

Experiment 2010: Gleaning — What’s gleaning, exactly? It’s way more noble than dumpster-diving, and it can get you some really good food for little to nothing. Get the scoop here. Debt Kid

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Guest's picture
cwaltz

I am totally intrigued by the idea of building a solar panel. How good do you have to be at soldering though?

Guest's picture
Justin

Because I live in the desert, I'm also very interested in building my own solar panels. Guess I should check it out, huh?

Guest's picture
gt0163c

The WSJ article used an average savings of $1.44/coupon. Even with doubles ($0.01-$0.39) and triples ($0.40-$0.50) my average is probably closer to $0.85 or so. And I think I probably spend a bit more than 1 minute per coupon that I actually use as I cut, sort and file many coupons which I do not use. So, my returns are a little lower than the article estimates. However, that does not deter me from coupon usage. Between coupons, rebates and free samples, I save at least 50% on my grocery and other consumables bill each month. I haven't paid more than $0.25 for most of my personal care items in years (including hair care, toothpaste, deoderant, razors, etc. That's where the savings adds up very quickly.).

It does take some work and at least some of what I eat and use is dictated by what I can find on sale with a coupon. But that's not something that bothers me, especially not when I consider the amount that I would otherwise be spending.

Guest's picture

The article was a little bit intense for me but I appreciate the idea. Haha.

Guest's picture

Great article...it would be great if you could get a tax credit for this. Just wishful thinking!

Guest's picture

Who would have thought that you could build a solar panel like that for $100. Nice article.