How much energy do solar panels produce for your home?

Jul 19 2021
How much energy do solar panels produce for your home?

In modern society, more and more residents appreciate the sun as a beneficial power resource. 

This is the key reason for the growing interest of households in such power usage. Over the past five years, the number of homes that installed such panels has tripled. According to multiple studies, over 30% of consumers are ready to install green energy devices in their homes and businesses.

We can use green power to get electricity by properly positioning the solar panels to maximize the output. Good illumination, building materials that reduce the heat gain, windows that increase sunlight, and built-in natural air circulation systems make the best use of existing building conditions.

Generating solar energy takes a broader use of special equipment and tools. It converts sunlight into electricity using the photoelectric effect. The Nobel Prize in Physics 1921 was awarded to Albert Einstein for discovering the photoelectric effect, and it has been improved upon ever since. Devices that use photoelectric effect are often referred to as Photovoltaics (PV). Solar Electric Panels are commonly referred to as PV Modules, and this term is still the main reference within the industry.  

Energy generated by Photovoltaic (PV) Modules can be stored by using Energy Storage Systems (ESS). These include batteries (electrochemical storage), and other energy storage means. 

Why solar panel output calculations are so important

What should you do first if you are interested in a PV system? Of course, first, you must correctly calculate the energy production of the solar panels to size your system. Then, compare the energy generation of systems of different brands and choose the option that suits you. 

This process is crucial and time-consuming, but if you do it correctly, it will provide you with an accurate energy estimate that is easy to use.  

What can affect the output efficiency?

While some new technologies are emerging and coming online, the primary solar panel types are the following:

  • monocrystalline
  • polycrystalline
  • thin-film

To produce the first two types, manufacturers use pure silicon with the addition of alloy materials on the outside and a conductive base/grid on the back. All panel types require a transparent outer layer of glass or polymers to protect against humidity and damage.

Monocrystalline tends to be costly, with the highest weight. Still, they have a high efficiency (up to 25%), the smallest area for the making of 1 kW, the longest service life (30 - 40 years) with low power losses from UV and temperature over time.

how much energy do solar panels produce

Rooftop

Placing the roof tools on the south side at a 20-30 degree angle helps the solar panels produce the maximum wattage. By doing so, you get the ultimate ability to service the needs of the house you live in with the fewest panels.

Season

Solar panel sizes and wattage is not the only thing that determines the energy sum you get. Seasonality plays a large role. In summer, there are more hours of sunshine, so the amount of energy increases, but it falls off in winter.

Shading

Do not install solar technologies in the shade. Doing so will also reduce their performance and electrical output.

Soiling

If the large part of the solar panel is dirty and its output falls, wipe it with a damp cloth and remove the dirt. Please don't rely on the rain; it may not take away all the dirt, do it manually.

Now let's review an easy way to calculate kWh from solar panels.

Easy calculations to find solar panel output

A modern solar panel is rated at 330-360 watts and is about 15 sq. ft.

The solar systems are rated in watts, too. (a 30-panel solar system is 360X30 = 10,800 Watts, or 10.8 kilowatts (kW). 

Per hour

Energy is calculated over time. So to find out the energy generation of the above 10.8 kW system, we simply need to multiply it by the unit of time. 

10.8 kW X 1 hr = 10.8 kilowatt-hours (kW)

Per day

Kilowatts x Average Daily Peak Hours =daily kWh

If we use our 10.8 kW example, here is what we get in Florida:

10.8 kW X 4 Average Daily Peak Hours = 43.8 kWh

Per month

43.8 kWh X 30 days = 1314 kWh/Month

Per year

1314 kWh X 12 months = $15,768 kWh / Year. This is a very typical requirement for a mid-to a large residential home. 

Per square foot

The value that can be calculated for your home and depends on its quadrature. As we discussed, the solar panels are roughly 15 sq. ft.

15 panels X 30 panels = 450 sq ft. 15,768 kWh/Yr / 450 sq. ft = 35 kWh/sq ft/yr. Thus, this system will generate 35 kWh per year per square foot.

solar panel output

Comparing different brands and their watts meanings

In summary, we have given information about the most common manufacturers in the US market. It offers various examples of PV modules and provides power output comparisons. 


BRAND NAME

MIN

MAX 

AVERAGE

Amerisolar

240 

330

285

Axitec

250

385

302

Boviet Solar

320

340

330

CentroSolar

250

320

278

Canadian Solar

225

410

320

ET Solar

255

370

306

Grape Solar

160

285

237

Hanwha

365

385

375

Kyocera

260

330

295

LG

315

415

365

Mitsubishi Electric

270

280

275

Panasonic

320

370

340

Seraphim

255

340

294

Solartech Universal

310

325

318

Talesun

275

415

365

Talesun Solar Co.

400

400

400

Trina

265

415

337

Trina Solar Energy

260

320

288

Upsolar

270

365

311

Vikram Solar

320

340

330


The number of panels to power an average house?

in 2020, the US added 3 GW of residential rooftop installations. The average system size utilized was approximately 8 kW. 

Wrapping up

While there are some upfront costs involved in going solar, it has become more and more common due to quick payback times and tremendous savings. 

California remains the leader in the US. Over the past year, 40% of all installations were made there. 

Wyoming, Texas, and Iowa are also among the top solar producers. If you already know how many panels you will need,  need, all you have to do is to choose your service provider. 

If you want to confirm your calculations, simply use our calculator for a reference point. s for your needs. 

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