Ring Solar Charger by Voltaic

Ring has been making smart doorbells, WiFi cameras, and other home automation devices since 2012. Since power is crucial to keep your Ring functioning, our engineers decided to test the performance of Ring’s 2 watt solar panel versus our own panels to make sure that your Ring doesn’t go flat. The findings showed that the solar panel offered by Ring is undersized and is sometimes not able to produce enough power to keep the Ring’s internal 19.4 watt-hour battery running.

To avoid power constraints, we recommend opting for our 3.5 watt solar panel, which tests showed will give you 65% more power and overall better performance in cloudy or low-light conditions.

 

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There are a number of variables that affect the battery life of the Ring including how much power the solar panel is producing and how much power the Ring is consuming.

Power Production of Solar Panel

1. Size of the panel (measured in Watts)
2. Solar conditions – sunny vs cloudy
3. Angle of the panel toward the sun

Power Consumption of the Ring: This is determined by amount of motion which activates the sensors and video within the motion zones you set in the Ring app. More movement and a larger motion radius requires more power.

Here are some performance specs we discovered through testing with a combination of our bench DC Power Supply and 3.5 watt solar panel:

The Ring Stick Up Cam will allow an input voltage in the range of 4.2V – 6.0V. It will also accept input currents as low as 5mA and as high as 1A.

The table below indicates the charge rate at different solar intensities. The various solar intensities were replicated by angling a 3.5 watt solar panel away from the sun in conjunction with a solar intensity meter until the desired SI was achieved.

Note: No issues were discovered when replicating clouds or shade on the panel, causing the power to drop to almost 0 watts, and then recovering to full sun.

Ring Solar Charge Rate from 3.5 Watt Panel

Solar Intensity (w/m^2) Volts Amps Power (watts)
70 4.15 0 0
75 4.15 0.01 0.0415
200 4.45 0.13 0.5785
400 4.67 0.24 1.1208
600 4.39 0.36 1.5804
800 4.40 0.48 2.112
960 4.52 0.56 2.5312

The table above indicates power production in just about full sun (960 w/m^2) from the 3.5 watt panel is actually 2.5312 watts. The results of our test revealed that our 3.5 watt panel will charge a completely flat Ring Stick Up Cam battery in about 12 hours of full, direct sun.

We also tested different sized panels to determine whether or not a larger panel may suit a lower light environment better than a smaller panel.

testing ring camera with solar panel

 

Power Inputs from Various Panel Sizes

Panel Size Solar Intensity (w/m^2) Temperature (F) Volts Amps Power (watts)
2 Watt 875 72 4.47 0.36 1.61
3.5 Watt 940 72 4.53 0.55 2.49
6 Watt 940 72 4.89 0.91 4.45
9 Watt 940 72 6.02 1.02 6.14

From the data above, we found that our 3.5 watt panel produces 65% more power than the 2 watt panel, offering better charging performance in low light conditions. If you’ll be placing your camera and solar panel in an area that gets very little light during the day, is in indirect sun, or there is some shade, we might recommend opting for an even larger 6 watt panel, which produces 55% more power than the 3.5 watt.

Physically, our panels differ from Ring’s solar panel in that they look sharp, are compact, lighter in weight, produce more power, and are manufactured with a high-quality, water-proof urethane coating that will keep them performing well outside for 10 years.

Get Your Own Voltaic Ring Solar Charger

We recommend our 3.5 Watt solar panel for charging at your home. To get yourself set up here’s what you’ll need:

Optional, but highly recommended:

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

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2 Responses

  1. steve

    What about the Ring Spot Camera. It holds two removable batteries. Is there another option for this camera? What is the wattage/voltage for that solar panel?

    Reply
    • Voltaic Systems

      The Ring Spotlight Cam uses the same style solar panel as the other models. My sense is that the power consumption may be higher so having a larger panel, like our 6 Watt, 6 Volt solar panel could make sense.

      Reply

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