Top 10 solar installation and maintenance tools

Renewable energy, Clamps

Solar power is one of the world’s fastest growing sources of energy. The industry and those who support it through services and related hardware and software are improving and innovating at a rapid pace. Solar technicians and managers need to be able to keep up with the changes to ensure they can remain profitable throughout the life of modern solar power systems—installation through to troubleshooting.

Solar clamp meter
Using the Fluke 393 FC CAT III 1500 V True-rms Solar Clamp Meter in the field.

Having the right tools handy will help you get and keep systems up and running, and potentially improve your overall capabilities, leading to increased profit.

Fluke recommends you start out with a core set of solar installer tools to ensure you’re ready for whatever might come your way.

Core tools for the solar industry

  1. Fluke 393 FC CAT III 1500 V True-rms Clamp Meter
    Verify the presence of AC/DC load current, voltage, and continuity; measures up to 1500 Volts DC in combiner boxes, inverters, breakers, and disconnects; also measures loads and line frequency in circuits.
  2. Fluke IRR1 Solar Irradiance Meter
    Measures the solar output used to calculate the overall energy, efficiency, and placement of solar power systems.
  3. Fluke 87V MAX Digital Multimeter
    Quickly tests for voltage in environments with both AC and DC or ghost voltages; great for combiner box and inverter installation and troubleshooting.
  4. Fluke 1587 FC Insulation Tester
    Tests insulation resistance as well as performing spot checks, timed tests, and breakdown tests; use with switchgear, conductors, and cables.
  5. Fluke Ti480 PRO Infrared Camera
    Detects hot spots in electrical panels and breaker panels; also used for monitoring cooling fluid levels such as dielectric oils for transformers.
  6. Fluke Norma 6004 Portable Power Analyzer
    High-precision measurements for inverters; measures 1500 Volts DC and 1000 V AC with a single, portable tool for outdoor applications.
  7. Fluke 1625-2 Earth Ground Tester
    Confirms that the earth resistance meets safety compliance; validates that the grounding system has not deteriorated.
  8. Fluke BT521 Battery Analyzer
    Designed for measurement on stationary batteries of all types.
  9. Fluke 64 MAX IR Thermometer
    Quick temperature measurements with great accuracy; non-contact with high and low alarms for rapid display of measurements outside set limits.
  10. Fluke Insulated Hand Tools
    Rated 1000 V AC and 1500 V DC; critical part of NFPA 70E safety guidelines.

Complementary tools for the solar industry