Can you reduce or zero out your average bill in San Diego with the help of solar? It’s not an easy question because each home is a story of its own. We can tell you what affects the number of panels you need, but if you live in greater San Diego, we encourage you to get a personalized estimate from Action Solar Installers of San Diego. That way you get first-hand answers exactly for the things that concern you and your home. Call us! But, let’s first get a quick rundown of the factors that influence the answer to: How many solar panels do I need for a 2000 square feet home?
The main variables
- Your electricity consumption
- Your roof space
- Your roof orientation
- Roof shade area
Let’s go through these one by one. First, refer to your electricity bill to see how much electricity you spend a month. Even though 2000 sq.ft. is a comfy place and one could think the bills are cumbersome, it really depends on whether you have A/C, what type of A/C, whether your appliances are energy-efficient, whether your heating is all gas, all electric or combined, whether your home is well-insulated etc.
Your roof space will determine the number of solar panels you can fit on your roof.
Ideal roof orientation is south or south-west. East and east-south are less than ideal, but can be acceptable.
Last factor – shade. Ideally, your roof shouldn’t be shaded.
One solar panel – the size and average output
The average size of a solar panel is around 17.5 sq.ft. with an average output of 0.265 kW. However, it’s not just the size of available roof space and the size of solar panels that determines the number of solar panels your roof can take. There’s one more thing to include, and that’s solar panel setback.
Solar panel setback
Solar panel setback is a state regulation that stipulates there has to be 3 feet of free roof space between your solar panels and the roof ridge and sides. Depending on the shape of your roof (rectangular, hip, etc.) the setback will make only around 75% of your suitable roof space available for solar (or as little as 50%).
Why the setback? It’s the space firefighters need to do their job – e.g. ventilating the roof to release the pent-up heat and smoke so they can access the interior more easily.
San Diego and Southern California are a really good spot to go solar in the U.S. We get as many as 280 days of sunshine a year. And the days that are not sunny are typically only partly cloudy. This means that any number of solar panels for you home has a great potential to give you the virtual maximum energy panels can produce.
How to calculate a ballpark estimate of energy your solar panel system could produce?
- How many square feet of roof area do you have available? (focus on south-facing and southwest-facing roof areas and take into account the 3 ft setback)
- If one average solar panel if 17.5 sq.ft, how many could you fit on your roof?
- When you have the approximate number of panels, let’s see how much energy they would produce under ideal circumstances. Take the number of panels you could fit and multiply by 0.26 kW. That’s the rough estimate of your solar’s energy capacity.
- When you take your average electricity bill and identify your average monthly consumption of electricity, how much could be covered by your solar? Compare the consumption stated on your bill and the total capacity of your solar panels.
How many solar panels do I need for a 2000 square feet home is not an easy question
Even with all this information, you probably have additional questions. What if your roof orientation is not perfect? What if there’s a building close by, putting your home in partial shade? Let us answer these and many other potential questions in person. Call us today and get your free estimate!