The essential tools for renewable technologies 

Renewable energy installations are on the rise, and David Barnes, marketing manager at KNIPEX looks at the types of tools that make the job so much easier. 

Renewable energy installations are experiencing growth, and David Barnes, marketing manager at KNIPEX, explores the tools that simplify the job.

The demand for renewable technology is rising, and solar panels and heat pumps demand specialist tools to complete the installations. Take solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, which directly convert sunlight into electricity, which can be used to power electrical devices or stored for later use.  

Ongoing solar PV technology advancements result in more efficient and cost-effective systems, driving increased customer investment. A dedicated toolkit is essential for safety and efficiency when undertaking solar PV installations. This is precisely why, for example, manufacturers like KNIPEX have assembled a specialised tool case for photovoltaics, meticulously curated to address the distinctive requirements of solar PV installers. This durable tool case encompasses various tools, including crimping dies, cable strippers and cutters. These tools are securely housed in foam inserts so they stay organised and safe and can be easily transported to job sites. 

The case includes the crimping die, tailored exclusively for MC4 (multi-contact) solar cable connectors. With a 2.5-6.0 mm² capacity, this crimping die guarantees rock-solid connections. The tool case also contains a locator and a set of mounting tools for solar cable connectors cable strippers and cutters.  

The precision insulation stripper has specially adapted blades for smaller stripping capacities of 1.5 / 2.5 / 4.0 / 6.0 mm². The set also features crimp system pliers. With their exchangeable crimping dies and factory-calibrated crimping pressure, you can achieve consistent and professional-grade connections every single time. KNIPEX understands the importance of clean and accurate cable cutting. The tool case also includes cable shears capable of cutting copper cables up to Ø 15 mm.  

Working at height 

Performing tasks at elevated heights, particularly on rooftops, is routine for Solar PV installers. Safety remains paramount in such scenarios, and a specialised line of tethered tools is available to keep tools from falling and, consequently, anyone below safe from being hit. The KNIPEX tool bag for working at heights and tool bags for working at heights with tool holders are purpose-built to ensure that vital tools are firmly tethered, preventing accidents and potential tool loss. The KNIPEX lanyard adds an extra layer of security by fastening tools to the user, mitigating the risk of accidental drops from elevated positions. 

Heat pumps 

With the government grant for installation increasing by 50%, there has recently been a lot of noise about heat pumps. These heat sources require a substantial amount of piping work. With the KNIPEX pliers wrench, there is no need for metric and imperial spanners sets. They have adaptable, parallel jaws that ensure a secure hold on pipes of different sizes without causing any surface damage. With two extra setting positions, this tool provides enhanced gripping capacity, accommodating widths across flats up to 40 mm – an indispensable asset for heat pump installers.  

When it comes to electrical work on heat pumps, navigating cramped spaces and delicate connections is par for the course. KNIPEX’s 180mm Needle Nose Pliers excel in these situations. Their slim, elongated jaws grant effortless entry into confined areas, guaranteeing accurate manipulation of wires and connectors. These VDE-tested pliers are an indispensable tool for professionals engaged in electrical work for renewable installations.