Solar Panel & Battery Recharger

I want to charge a car battery (12v) with some solar panels. I am planning on running an inverter off of the car battery... all which I am capable of...

What I am wondering is... can I overcharge the car battery? If so, how could I prevent this from happening?

You can buy a solar battery charger with electronics to avoid overcharging for about the same cost as the solar cells.

The lead-acid batteries used in cars are hardy beasts, very tolerant of varying charge voltages. Their normal mode of operation is to be in a circuit that is providing power while they are being charged.

DCContrarian: You can buy a solar battery charger with electronics to avoid overcharging for about the same cost as the solar cells.

The lead-acid batteries used in cars are hardy beasts, very tolerant of varying charge voltages. Their normal mode of operation is to be in a circuit that is providing power while they are being charged.

this doesn't help me unfortunately, as I own the panels already. is there any schematics for this anywhere?

You need a charge regulator. I use a 12v lead acid leisure battery for camping with a solar panel to keep it charged. We get all of our lighting and charging of phones and mp3 players of this even in the UK. The controller cost me about £30.00 it was worth it. You connect the battery to one set of terminals. The solar panel to the next and the load to the next set of terminals. Handles all the charging and load for you.

Something like this: http://www.maplin.co.uk/charge-controllers-97384?ordercode=L22BR You will have to pick one to match your battery and panel.

Gordon