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Thread: Solar Panel repair

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    jmills's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
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    Solar Panel repair

    I was given a used 4 x 20 panel that looks like a sheet of black tubes stuck together. The previous owner said it probably has a leak. How do you repair these things?
    12' x 20' Intex Oval Frame Pool, AG
    Waterway 1 hp TWM Cartridge Filter
    4' x 20' solar panel
    41' water depth
    4393 Gallons according to the box.

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    Poughquag, NY
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    Normally, if the leak is in one "tube", you cut the tube and seal both ends (with a tight fitting screw that you caulk before screwing it into the cut ends). There are solar panel repair kits out there, do a web search and you will find them.
    20 x 40 vinyl IG. SWG. Solar. Ikeric VS pump.

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    Another thing you can try - which has worked well for me is a bit of homebrew plastic welding.
    Usually these leaks are splits rather than holes, really, the only way to find them is to pressurize it with water and see where it's leaking (both sides), you then drain it and make sure there's NO water in it before going on to fixing it. Now cut a sliver of the solar panel off from an outer edge, this will be your welding stick, use a plumbing torch and a knife, heat the knife, touch it to the cracked are while holding the "stick" to the exposed side - essentially you're melting both the panel's top surface and the stick at the same time, the stuff from the stick should flow into the melted upper layer of panel, once enough it on it, run over it with the knife and it should bond the new material to the panel - I've saved several traces that way - with every trace you plug, you lose heat gain, so the longer you can get away with doing this, the better.
    If you mess it up, go to the plug method - really, you have nothing to lose to try and fix it.

    I have tried every glue or epoxy possible to overlay cracks with no success - even marine epoxy, so don't waste your time and money on that method - it just doesn't work.

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    jmills's Avatar
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    I have successfully repaired the panel. These were not slits so I didn't go the plastic welding route. What I ended up doing was using set-screws, essentially threaded rod with a hex hole for an allen wrench, and small rubber plugs that were pieces of tire repair plugs. The rubber supplies the waterproofing and the set-screw holds the rubber plug in place. I also tried wrapping the set-screws with plumbing Teflon tape with no luck.
    12' x 20' Intex Oval Frame Pool, AG
    Waterway 1 hp TWM Cartridge Filter
    4' x 20' solar panel
    41' water depth
    4393 Gallons according to the box.

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    el_steak's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
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    I also have a leak (dent) in one of my panels. The panel is a "Techno-solis". The water channels are actually square instead of round. Anybody have any luck fixing panels of this type?

    The dealer told me to just squeaze some caulk in it ?!?

    The manufacturer hasn't answered my emails
    14X24 ig vinyl pool 3ft-4 1/2ft deep - 7000 gal
    Aqua Genie skimmer and return - no main drain, 1 hp hayward pump, 27" Hayward filter with Zeobrite,
    Aqua Logic P4 controller + SWG, 2 lights
    192 square feet of solar panels controlled by P4, 5KW electric heater (just in case...)

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    Re: Solar Panel repair

    Can someone let me know the OUTSIDE Diameter of the individual tubes in a Helicol Solar panel?

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    Re: Solar Panel repair

    ps- I figured out the answer for the above post.

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    San Juan Cosala, Jalisco
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    Re: Solar Panel repair

    I didn't see that plastic welding reply. Interesting. What is a plumbing torch?

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