Considering the switch to solar? One of the first questions you may have is how many panels you are going to need for your home. But before you can answer this question, you will have to determine your specific energy goals. What is your priority? Do you want to maximize your return on investment? Are you looking to reduce your carbon footprint? Save as much money as possible? Take some time to think about what you want to accomplish and consult with your solar installer. Then, they will take into account the following information to determine how many panels your property will need:
- What is the efficiency and wattage of the PV technology of the panels you have chosen? Solar panels don’t always operate at maximum efficiency. Weather conditions can temporarily reduce a system’s efficiency, for example. It is recommended to add a 25% cushion to your daily energy target in order to offset any inefficiencies.
- What is the climate and peak sunlight in your geographical area? The peak hours of sunlight for your particular geographical area will have a direct impact on the amount of energy your you can expect your system to produce. For example, someone who lives in a city that receives sunshine year-round, like most places in Southern California, will probably need less panels than someone who lives in a rainy city like Seattle.
- How many panels will provide the target hourly wattage? In order to determine this number, you will have to take your home’s hourly energy requirement and divide it by the wattage of your solar panels.
- What is the usable surface area of your roof? In other words, how many panels will fit, and what physical arrangement will help you get the most from your panels? Effective placement is an important consideration!
- How much energy does your household use on average? Go through your old energy bills to determine how many kilowatt-hours (kWh) of energy you typically use each day. This will indicate how many panels it will take to meet your needs.
At Sea Bright Solar, we offer free hour-long solar analyses to help our clients understand the installation process from start to finish. We encourage you to contact us to learn more about your energy needs.
Contact us today to get started with one of our Southern California solar installation professionals.