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Maintenance

We Care Solar’s approach to sustainability helps ensure maintenance and repair of the Solar Suitcases is minimal and that resources are in place to conduct repairs and maintenance when needed.

The Solar Suitcases are built with the highest quality parts. When properly installed, used, and serviced, and with one battery replacement, the Solar Suitcases can provide light for 10+ years. The main maintenance needs are:

  • Main Battery – The main batteries, which are lithium ferrous phosphate (LFP), will need to be replaced after approximately five years. See Video #17 Replacing the Main Battery for instructions on how to replace the battery.
  • Solar Panel – Solar panels are built to last for 10 years or more and are unlikely to need repair, although they may need to be cleaned periodically. See Video #15 Cleaning the Solar Panel for instructions on how to clean the solar panel.
  • Cords – Proper installation can significantly minimize cord damage. However, in some instances, damaged cords – including LED light cords and the homerun cable – may need to be repaired. See Video #16 Repairing a Cable for instructions on how to repair a cable. If repair is not possible, either the cord or the entire LED light may need to be replaced.
  • Appliances – Appliances (headlamps, fetal Doppler, rechargeable battery charger) all have a limited life span. We supply some replacements in the spare parts kit (detailed below), and some may also be purchased locally.

Troubleshooting

If you are having trouble with your Solar Suitcase, the following resources may help.

  • Refer to the Troubleshooting Guide in your User Manual.
  • Check out our Instructional Videos. This includes videos on troubleshooting, basic repair, and how to use the appliances.
  • Call the number on the Solar Suitcase sticker. This should connect you to a local technician who may be able to help.
  • Email We Care Solar at info@wecaresolar.org. We Care Solar provides free remote technical support for all of our Solar Suitcases.

Spare Parts

The Solar Suitcase is built with the highest quality parts to ensure longevity. Some parts are available locally while others will need to be purchased online or through We Care Solar.

We Care Solar includes spare parts with the shipment of Solar Suitcases. For Version 3 Solar Suitcases*, we typically ship one spare parts kit, which includes one extra complete Solar Suitcase (including lights, appliances, and solar panel) and additional spare parts, with every 50 Solar Suitcases. The spare parts kit includes 4 LED lights, 1 homerun cable, 2 internal battery cables, 4 headlamps, 4 battery chargers, and 4 fetal Dopplers with AA batteries. The extra Solar Suitcase can be easily swapped out for a non-functioning one at the health facility, so that the non-functioning one can be brought back for examination and repair.

If you require a spare part that is not in your kit or for more information on how to obtain spare parts, click here.

*If you have a Version 2 Solar Suitcase, visit the Solar Suitcase Version 2 page for Information on what is included in your service kit.

Warranty

We Care Solar provides a warranty for two years on the base system. The base system includes: chassis, charge controller, lights, main LFP battery, and solar panels. All warranty claims are dependent on proper installation and usage. No appliances – battery charger, headlamp, charging cords, and fetal Doppler – are covered under warranty.