Sean Callaghan from ItsYeBoi on YouTube has demonstrated that charging a Model 3 with a solar trailer is possible. He bought his solar panels on Wish, the eCommerce store that often dominates Facebook ads with odd things for sale. The goal was simply to charge his Tesla. The solar trailer cost him $2,500 to build.
“Elon, please, notice me,” he says after explaining that he is making the world’s first solar trailer. The original plan was to put the solar panels directly on his Model 3, but the Wish panels couldn’t do this. He did find someone who could make it happen without a trailer, but this video is about the trailer. He uses 100 watt Dokio Solar Panels DFSP-100M. The panels are flexible — they bend.
After building the trailer and fitting the panels to them, he explains how it works. He sets up the solar charge controllers and connects the batteries to the controllers. The solar panels send power to the solar charge controllers, which send power to the batteries. The batteries send power to the inverter, which sends power to the Tesla. “I drive. Yay.”
The next step was to install a tow bar onto the Tesla and connect it to the trailer. “Will this work? I don’t know, but we’re gonna find out.” After hooking it up, he went for a drive around the parking lot and parked it in the sun. He checked that it was working by charging his phone, and then tested a coffee maker, making solar-powered coffee — coffee made with sunlight! After the coffee adventures, they plugged the Tesla in to charge it. It worked! It would take 11 hours and some change to fully charge, according to the Tesla. That’s pretty cool.
I think the way the video was presented was pretty funny. Sean was engaging and I thought it was pretty interesting seeing the coffee maker plugged into a solar trailer that he built from scratch and got working as desired.
As for charging the Tesla, this would be a great idea for those going on long road trips who need to charge their car during the day away from a station, or if going to an area without charging stations at all.
All in all, this is a pretty fun video and it’s great to see that charging a Model 3 with solar panels installed on a trailer behind the car is definitely possible and fun.
A version of this article was originally published on EV Obsession.