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How many solar panels are needed to power a home?

Did you know that the sun generates so much solar energy in an hour enough to satisfy global energy needs for a whole year? Solar energy is increasingly becoming either a primary or alternative energy in many homes.

The light and heat generated by the sun is harnessed using various technologies like solar panels and then converted into electrical energy. This is known as solar energy.

Top rated solar panels are very efficient at harnessing the sun’s energy and a perfect alternative to supplying your home with power. However, depending on how you intend to use the solar energy like full or supplement power source, there are various factors to consider before installing solar panels in your home.

1. The Amount of Energy You Use in your Home

Knowing the amount of energy you use in your home is a major determining factor on the number of panels you will need. Most people get it wrong by considering the size of their houses. You can never have the same energy usage as another person with the same house size as yours.

Because you may live alone while the other with a family, energy usage habits may differ like keeping the air conditioning on all the time or energy saving lights installed among others.

The perfect approach is checking your utility bill to get accurate figures on your energy consumption.

2. Your Solar Goals

Motivations behind the installation of solar panels differ from one person to another. Knowing your specific energy goals will help you in deciding how many solar panels to install. They may include:

  • Full power – You may need the solar panel system to supply 100% of your home’s energy.
  • Partial power – You may need to use solar energy partially to compensate for the entire energy consumption in your house. You may be interested in a system that will generate power to be used during the day or at night to avoid paying more for utility-generated electricity.
  • Clean power – You may be interested in minimizing environmental impact by decreasing your dependence on non- renewable energy.

3. Amount of Sunlight to Expect

Solar insolation is a term used widely in matters relating to solar energy and simply refers to the amount of sunlight in a particular area at a particular time. You will find charts indicating solar insolation in your area to determine how many solar panels you will need to install to be able to harness enough solar energy to meet your requirements. For instance, people living in areas like California will receive more direct sunlight compared to people living in Seattle.

The more sunlight you are likely to receive, the fewer panels you will need and vice versa.

4.The Number of Panels that you can fit

After getting to know the amount of solar energy that you will need to generate to sustain your home, you also need to calculate the number of solar panels that can fit on your roof. Panels have to be installed strategically to be able to access maximum sunlight. Some factors to consider include:

  • The direction of the roof – Depending on your geographical location, there are specific regions on your roof that are hit more by sunlight than others.
  • Shade – It’s not all about the amount of roof space you have, but again you need to locate spots on your roof that are not affected by shade from like other buildings and trees. The shade-less areas receive maximum sunlight.

5. Panel Size

Solar panels generate different amounts of energy mostly based on their sizes. With the knowledge of the amount of solar energy you need, you will be able to calculate the number of solar panels to install based on the power they can generate.

Installing solar panels in your home will be beneficial as they will save you money, are durable, free of pollution among others. Keep in mind that the more panels you install, the more energy you generate.

My name's Craig, I am a general contractor currently living in Dallas, TX. I've worked with different kinds of electric tools throughout my career, including the portable generators. In my spare time, I love going camping and tailgating with my family and friends. I've created this site to provide honest advice for people looking for the right portable generator and other related equipment for work and leisure.