What Happens To Your Solar Power In Winter?

What Happens To Your Solar Power In Winter?

Winter is the best time of year to monitor your off-grid solar system’s output closely.

In an off-the-grid solar house, a row of days with complete cloud cover can occasionally mean a drop in the available power from your battery storage due to fewer hours of sunlight hitting the solar panels.

Of course, as most solar households are also connected to the electricity grid, energy is always available even though the sun might be hidden. But it’s important to understand what happens to your solar production during winter and learn the best way to monitor your solar system.

What happens to your solar production during winter?

To understand that, let’s first look at how solar panels work.

It’s a common misconception that solar panels need heat to produce power. Still, they need light, incredibly ultraviolet light (UV), which is the most effective at creating a direct current. But, when sunlight hits your solar panels, direct electricity (DC) is produced; this is converted to alternating current (AC) by your inverter, and it’s the AC we use in our homes. Read More

Solar Panel Direction

The Direction Solar Panels Face

The Direction Solar Panels Face

The direction solar panels face for optimum sun exposure varies depending on location. In Australia, solar panel yields are higher when solar panels face north. All Southern Hemisphere locations should ideally position panels in a northerly direction.
The direction solar panels face, along with their angle, or tilt, at that orientation, are all vital inputs to accurately calculate the solar power for the property. These inputs and the property’s location are needed to calculate the solar energy at a given site.

For Australian conditions, the best orientation for your panels is NORTH. Although, if your commissions do not face north, you can still generate good solar yields.

What if your panels aren’t facing north?

If you live in Perth, and your panels don’t face north, your property may still be suitable for generating solar energy. Conferences can still generate good yields if your property faces east or west. Depending on your roof pitch and location, you will lose somewhere between 10-20% efficiency due to not having panels facing north. It is recommended that you can place the panels in more of a northeast or even northwest direction. This will increase sun exposure to the meetings and improve the system’s ability to generate solar power.

Suppose your property is constructed so that you can only face solar panels in a southern direction. In that case, you will also lose capacity compared to a north-facing solar system.

The table below shows the panels’ efficiency in Perth at different orientations; this is based on a roof pitch of 25°. Read More

How to buy the best solar panels for your home

How to buy the best solar panels for your home

Solar panels are progressively being installed by homeowners who are worried about rising electricity costs and want a system that cuts their bills and produces greener energy.

What size solar panel system do I need for my home?

To size your solar panel system for your home, you need to figure out how much electricity you use and when you are using it.

A typical home uses 20Kw of energy a day as a general guide. A 5Kw solar system would meet most of the daytime power needs of an available home.

How many solar panels do I need for my home?

  • The output of your entire solar system matters more than the size or number of panels.
  • The higher each panel’s nominal power rating (and actual power output), the fewer you will need or (the more power you will generate).
  • If your home has plenty of roof space, you may find it economical to purchase cheaper panels with less efficiency and use more of them.

For example, You could use four 250W Jinko panels, taking up 6.5m² of roof space, to make a 1000W array. But four 350W Q.MAXX panels would take up the same overall area and form a more extensive collection of 1400W (although the Q.MAXX will cost you more). Read More