Solar energy is quickly growing in popularity among homeowners, and for very good reasons. However, there is still a lot about solar panels that many homeowners don’t know. If you’re considering solar panel installation and are wondering how much energy they can generate, here is what you need to know.
Wattage Output and Efficiency
Most solar panel systems can generate a wattage output of between 250 and 400 watts, although there are some which can exceed this. Solar power wattage is one thing that you will want to ask about specifically when deciding which type of panel is right for your home and energy needs.
However, while higher power ratings are often considered more desirable, there is more to consider than just how many watts it can produce. For example, efficiency can be more beneficial than just base wattage. If you have two solar panels, each with a 15% efficiency rating, but one has an output of 250 watts while the other has 300. It’s likely that this increase in wattage output is due to the panel’s size rather than overall efficiency. Because of this, you’ll need to consider size as well as efficiency and compare which is optimal for your location.
Size vs. Quantity
Considering wattage output and efficiency brings us to the question of whether or not size is better than quantity. While the size of a solar panel can allow it to be able to absorb more solar energy, the end result can be up to personal preference. For example, you could create a home solar system that has a total capacity of 5kW using either 20 smaller 250-Watt panels or 16 larger 300-Watt panels. Because each setup would generate the same amount of power, you can choose whether or not you want more smaller panels or fewer larger panels installed.
Maximum Power Production
When it comes to power production, you also have to think about other factors that can contribute to how much energy a solar panel is able to take in. To do this, you need to consider things like temperature sensitivity, shade, hours of sun exposure, and the angle of your roof if you’re installing them there. Direct sunlight can vary depending on location, but it is possible to calculate how much you can expect your power output to be.
For instance, if your panel location gets around five hours of sunlight every day, you can multiply this by the number of watts from a solar panel: 5 x 290 = 1,450 watts. This means that a configuration like this can expect to bring in between 500 to 550 kilowatt-hours of energy every year. Using this, you can compare the calculated energy output to your average yearly energy usage to determine how much your solar panels will benefit you.
When it comes to deciding whether or not to install solar panels at your home, the benefits often outweigh any disadvantages. Take a moment to consider your energy needs, and speak to a local solar panel provider for information on the types of panels they provide. You can then use this information to calculate which configuration would be best for your home so that you can get the most energy possible out of your solar panels.