Come, on, it's winter. You all must be up to some cheapskatery! There hasn't been a post in three weeks.
Inspired by the solar vent repair thread,
Nicro Day-Night 2000 solar vent repair
I thought I should try and make my vents work better. One was noisy, one was impotent. I took them off and brought them home to tinker. So last night I took them all apart and got going with my multimeter ( I love a multimeter). I found that one solar cell was pretty well pooched, and one motor as suspected had bad bearings and was quite noisy. I figured I could likely pick up spares at the big (and fun) electronics surplus shop. But I thought, maybe I can find what I need on eBay, save a trip and have them mailed.
I searched "round solar cell" and found this:
It's exactly what I already have! Looking more closely, some previous owner had bought these inexpensive solar exhaust fans, painted them white, and installed them under a presumably already existing chrome trim ring. Now, this is me cheaping out a bit, not replacing them with some $150 "marine" unit, but the last set would have lasted at least 7 years for the previous owner. For $80 the pair shipped, I figure I am well ahead, even if they only last another 7 years.
I think I will take them apart and try to install a rechargeable lithium battery of some kind, I have to figure out the optimal voltage of these units. is there a trick I need to know, some circuitry involved in putting in a battery?