There’s no denying that renewable energy is the way of the future. Everyone is looking for a way to make their lifestyles more sustainable, and more homeowners are buying solar panels than ever before. Who doesn’t want to take advantage of energy savings while helping the environment?
But how many solar panels do you need to get the best return on your investment?
There are several factors that can help you determine the number of panels that will provide you with good value for your money. Let’s look at how you can calculate this number.
Your Energy Usage
How much energy do you use on average? More energy consumption means that you need more solar panels to generate that amount of energy.
You can look at your previous year’s energy bills to calculate your energy usage. In the U.S., the average household uses around 11,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) every year. This will vary by region and home type, so your home might use more or less energy.
Divide the number of kWh you used last year by 12 to get an idea of how much you use per month. You can also divide the yearly kWh by 365 to estimate how much energy you’ll need per day to meet your household needs.
Sunlight in Your Area
The amount of sunlight in your area affects the number of home solar panels you’ll require. The more sun that shines in your area, the fewer panels you might need.
Calculate the average hourly energy usage by dividing your daily kWh usage by 24. Multiply that by 1,000 to convert to watts and then divide by the number of peak sunlight hours in your area. Now you have your hourly energy requirements.
Blue Raven installers note that long, sunny days make certain areas ideal places for solar energy. You might even be able to generate enough energy to sell some back to the local power grid.
But what if you live in an area that gets a lot of cloudy days? You can still take advantage of the benefits of solar panels, but you might need to install more to meet your energy needs.
The panel wattage refers to the output of energy that a panel produces when conditions are ideal. The efficiency of residential solar panels makes a difference in how many you’ll need.
Multiply the number of hours of sunlight you get by the panel wattage of the product you’re considering. This will give you an estimate of how much energy you can expect from a panel. From this information, you can calculate how many panels you would need to get the energy you need.
How Many Solar Panels Will You Need?
When you take the above factors into account, you can calculate how many solar panels will provide the maximum benefit for your home. Contact a solar panel installation service today and get the right amount of panels on your roof.
Take a look at our Tech section for more advice about using renewable energy in your home.
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