8 Things You Should Know Before You Invest In A Home Solar Power System

How much do you know about home solar power system?

Many home owners like the idea of getting free energy from the sun. The idea of using renewable energy such as solar for residential usage makes a lot of sense. But not all solar systems work the same. Different locality will yield different output.

Engaging a professional solar contractor to install the solar system can be expensive. Be prepared to invest upwards of $40,000.

Does your home really need a solar array? To give you a better understanding on solar power, consider the following 8 things.

1) Sunlight

How much sun light does your home get on a yearly basis?

Go to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory at www.nrel.gov or National Climatic Data Center at www.ncdc.noaa.gov and see how much sunshine your area is getting.

Obviously, a solar system works better if it is installed in an area with generous amount of sun.

2) Snowfall

How much snow does your roof retains?

Particularly, you want to know which side of the roof holds the most amount of snow. You want to place your solar panels on the side of the roof with least amount of snow to avoid being inundated with heavy snow.

Heavy snow on the solar module might damage the glass glazing.

3) Cloud Cover

If your house is located in a cloudy region, you still can use solar energy. The only drawback, the solar energy is generally diffused or spread out.

As a result, you may need a large array to capture more of the sun’s ray.

4) Smog

Do you stay in an area with heavy smog?

Air pollution and smog affect the amount of sunlight you can expect to receive on your solar module. If you do live in an area with heavy air pollution, expect less system output over an extended period of time.

In other words, you won’t be getting the optimum efficiency from the solar system

5) Air Density

The density of the air around your house can also affect the effectiveness of a residential solar system. Generally, you get better solar exposure in the mountains with less air density. When you are nearer to sea level, the air is thicker therefore scattering the sunlight.

Here’s a tip. You can make a quick estimate on how clear your air is by simply observing how blue the sky is on a clear day. Thick air scatters more red light, and so the appearance of the sky is less blue and more white.

6) Surrounding Temperature

A PV system works best with lower surrounding temperature. The semiconductors inside the solar module generate more electricity when it is cool. Therefore, you can get more system output on a cold, clear day than a sunny day.

7) Frequency of Fog Cover

If you’re living in an area that’s foggy and misty in the morning but the mist burns off in the noon, you want to orient your solar panels more westward to optimize the amount of sunlight you can achieve over the course of a day.

This factor is very similar to cloud covers.

8) Wind

How much wind does your house get?

Strong wind can damage the solar array. Since the PV modules are located up on the roof, a strong gasp of wind might blow it away. If your home is getting strong wind on a consistent basis, you may have to invest on stronger and heavier supports for your solar system.

I hope the 8 points above are useful for you.

A residential solar power system has a lot of benefits and more people should use it. Nonetheless, you must know the different factors that might affect the end results, especially when you are about to make a large capital investment.

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