Introduction: Solar RC Car

Picture of Solar RC Car

A rc car with two solar panels strapped up top for charging power. (Sorry no images) video coming soon. This is my first Instructable so be as honest as you can be

Step 1: Scavenge the Parts

Picture of Scavenge the Parts

The first thing is to get the parts. You will need:

-Scavenged chargeable rc car (the bigger the better)
-two 12 volt solar panels (flexible is best)
-1-2 diodes (two if you recharge the controller battery)
-(optional) panel for controller that is close to its voltage
-(optional but recommended) old computer fan whatever size works


-soldering iron
-duct tape

Step 2: Wire the Panels to Car

Picture of Wire the Panels to Car

First is to pull the car apart. You need pull the body of the top of the car. Then find the positive and negative terminals of the pcb in the car. If there is a cover over the pcd drill holes to run wires through. Take the two 12 volt solar panels and solder wires on them (make sure you have enough to lay the solar panel next to the car with the cover of). Solder the diode on the positive terminal. Then run the wires through the holes and solder in them parallel to the diode and negative terminals. leave the cover of for the next step.

Step 3: Wire the Fan to the Car

Picture of Wire the Fan to the Car

This is simple. Wire this to either the positive and negative terminals on the rc car pcb or one of the solar panels. Close the car up.

Step 4: Wire the Controller

Picture of Wire the Controller

This is simple too. take the small solar panel. wire to long wires on the panel. Solder the wires to the terminals inside the controller. Make sure you drill wholes for the wires to come out of. Then your done.

Step 5: Driving

set up the panel, make sure the car was or is sitting in the sun and drive.


blobert1234 (author)2017-12-06

also, what do you mean by panel for controller. please get back to me fast cause i have a science fair project soon and i really would like to do this one.

blobert1234 (author)2017-12-06

what volt is the diodes

miacontreras13 (author)2016-01-26

Which remote control car is better,solar panel or a electric battery car?

miacontreras13 (author)2016-01-26

What are some facts about the solar panel remote control car?Can anyone help me?:(

miacontreras13 (author)2016-01-26

how can i find facts about the solar panel remote control car?

HassanO2 (author)2015-11-08

I dont unserstand does the controller wired to the car

DEEJAY642 (author)2015-10-09

its cloudy, now what?

yousef abdullatif (author)2015-08-12

i am building a solar car too but my steps was a little bit diffrent but its cool

It's funny looking back on this now, and knowing what I do now about electronics vs. then, I'm a little shocked that I didn't hurt myself more often. ha ha.

solar car (author)2012-05-16

im building a solar powerd car for a show at a elmentry school...any tips?
nice car by the way

robobot3112 (author)solar car2014-08-23

keep all of the systems cool.

depends if its your first time with electronic components or you might have little experience and it might be hard

solar car (author)2012-05-16

im also going to build a car thats solar powerd. would it be hard?

epierce (author)solar car2012-05-21

My solar powered electric trike actually has almost 1500 miles on it. The panels produce 15 watts at 24 volts. This will charge the batteries but will not run a 450watt motor. Hope that helps.

marianhanna (author)2011-10-08


frdmrckr (author)2011-03-21

Fans for Cooling, things got very hot sitting in the sun, was afraid of the battery pack getting damaged

noor_karzon (author)2011-03-21

Why the fan?! What is the purpose ?!

heavydeath (author)2008-08-23

how did u run the energy straight in to the car u didnt use rechargeble batterys

starwarsfan (author)heavydeath2009-02-07

he probably just hooked it up to the motor with no batteries

frdmrckr (author)starwarsfan2010-07-10

The batteries were originally rechargable. I just threw a diode in and ran the solar panels to the same terminals the battery pluged into. It did charge them decently. That way if i did run into shade it still ran.

Mr.NHRA (author)frdmrckr2010-07-25

I guess i should have read this b4 i made my solar hummer. Its basically the same thing because neither of ours runs directly of solar.

frdmrckr (author)Mr.NHRA2010-07-25

well i also did run it without the batteries too. The batteries were a 9 volt rechargeable pack. The panel was 12 volts but the amperage was a little lower. it ran fine without them. Just the shade killed it...

handywomanparty (author)2009-05-13

the fan is for cooling down the engine but he or she should of not used it because it is a small car and im not sure if it would get heated that much but if im wrong fell fre to correct me

frdmrckr (author)handywomanparty2010-07-10

I used the fan to cool down the whole system. Sitting in the sun it got very hot and i was afraid of causing damage due to heat. its not needed

2muchfreetime (author)2008-07-03

Great Idea! I'm going to try it with a frame rather than a whole car body. It might solve the speed issue. How much did your solar panels cost?

now solar panels are cheap

ReCreate (author)2muchfreetime2009-05-15

They can cost from 60 to several hundred dollars

frdmrckr (author)2muchfreetime2008-07-29

Free. They were donated to me from a friend

ReCreate (author)frdmrckr2009-05-15

Wow,A friend Gave you that?

PCvsMac (author)frdmrckr2008-08-06

God bless your friend... I was going to do something like this but a bit more simple...

Gary1995 (author)2010-02-28

 i thought that r c care for a second was a ps3 with wheels

knight2067 (author)2008-08-22

Dangerous, but I might try with a r/c helicopter... Probably should keep the battery pack fully charged in case of cloud.

ReCreate (author)knight20672009-05-15

An RC helicopter Would not be able to hold it up,at all

deathpod (author)ReCreate2010-01-22

Radioshack sells small superlight silicone panels that put out .5v. I'm gonna try to afix an RC copter  with some to trickle charge the battery in flight.

Glockenator (author)2009-12-05

the tag on that cable makes no sense

stallionspirit8 (author)2009-10-15

incredible instructable!
i have a school project to make one similar to this, and i was wonderingwhere you could get similar, cheap solar panels.
Thank you!

antitaengbasuraman (author)2009-09-05

what is the size of the solar panel?

santi (author)2008-09-05

where i buy the solar panel

ReCreate (author)santi2009-05-15

You Can buy them somewhere for (If your really lucky) 60-300 bucks

thepaul93 (author)2008-09-15

what is the fan for?

ReCreate (author)thepaul932009-05-15

Wasting Electricity,We don't want it to go faster than 0.00000001 MPH

gamefreek (author)2009-03-27

how fast dus it go. i bet is slow as hell
if you like R/C cars go to

juanvi (author)2009-01-15

could you add pics of the nection of the solar panels with the car and diode, please?

brightwhite (author)2008-10-07
FreshPineSent (author)2008-08-23


knarx (author)2008-08-22

Finally featured. I am glad to see this.

neardood (author)2008-08-22

sorry, I don't get the comment on the far right in the first picture. I'm definately no spelling bee, but please can you at least proof read you're work? No hard feelings as its you're first

neardood (author)2008-08-22

I get the controller, but not the car.

neardood (author)2008-08-22

is teh fan for charging?

Sandisk1duo (author)2008-08-22

Batteries don't like heat

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