If you’ve decided to reduce your energy consumption by installing a PV system for your home or business, you need to find a dependable company to install your solar panels. To do this, you should first get acquainted with the most important requirements for installing a solar system in your home.
Whether you want to learn about different types of solar systems or ways to enhance the lifespan of your PV system, you can count on top-notch solar panel installation and design pros in Santee to provide all the solar energy information you might need. Read on to find out what size of solar system will best fit your specific needs and how much sunlight you need to efficiently power your residential or commercial property.
How big a solar energy system do I need?
One of the most common questions from people considering solar panel installation is what size of a solar system would best suit their needs. Finding an answer to this question can be tricky since estimating the size of your solar system will depend on a large number of factors. To help you get an idea, here are some of the most important ones:
- Your average energy consumption: the first step is to determine the number of kilowatt hours of electricity you use on average. Use your electricity bills from the past 12 months to calculate your average monthly and daily usage.
- The peak sunlight for your area: find the solar insolation hours for your area, i.e. the average hours the sun produces peak sunlight. Divide your daily kWh usage by the average peak hours to determine how much energy you need your solar system to produce per day.
- The number of panels you need: to determine the number, divide your daily kWh requirement with panel efficiency. For example, the typical American household would need 28-34 solar panels with 250-watt efficiency.
- The size of your roof: once you determine the number of panels you need, you have to make sure that your home is suitable for mounting your desired panels and see whether you can actually fit them on the roof.
- How much you plan to invest: of course, the type, size and efficiency of the solar system you choose will depend on your budget. Make the decision by taking into account your energy requirements, space restrictions and financial means to find the solar option best suited to your needs.
How do I know if I have enough sunlight for PV?
When deciding whether or not solar panels make sense for their home or business, people often wonder how many hours of sunlight are needed for solar systems to be worth the investment. Since different countries have different sunlight peaks, the location of your home definitely plays a role in deciding if going solar is a smart decision.
What are the peak sunlight hours in my country?
Peak sun-hours in the majority of the United States range between 3 and 6 hours a day. Of course, this factor carries more weight in states on the lower end of the spectrum.
California residents generally don’t have to worry about sunlight hours as much since they live in a state with one of the highest sunlight peak averages in the country, as high as 5.82. If you want more precise information, use an insolation map to find the exact amount of solar energy your location gets during the worst month of the year.
How much sunlight do photovoltaic systems need?
It has been shown that having at least 4 hours of peak sun-hours is optimal for solar panels to work. However, while your location’s sun-hours can help you determine your solar requirements, having unobstructed access to natural daylight during most of the day is far more important for PV systems to produce electricity.
This means that the angle of your roof and the presence of trees, surrounding buildings, or other obstructions will affect the efficiency of your solar panels much more than the number of peak hours.
Will my solar panels work on cloudy days?
The short answer to this common question is: yes. Solar panels do work in overcast conditions because sunlight can diffuse through the clouds to reach the panels. However, even modern panels optimized to maximize the light they receive will be only 25-40% as effective in cloudy weather as they would be on a sunny day.
Rely on superb solar panels installation pros Santee, CA is proud of
While it’s important to learn as much as you can about utilizing solar energy, only seasoned installation experts can estimate the number of panels you should have installed. They can also advise you on how you can best benefit from going solar considering your location and specific needs.
Instead of fretting about the specifics of your future solar system, go hiking with your friends on Cowles Mountain while our experienced installation technicians design and build a solar system tailored to your needs. Call Action Solar today and schedule your free estimate!