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Solar power is a great way to improve your energy usage in your home. Solar panel technology has made a lot of progress, especially in recent years. However, many people are still concerned about how much electricity a solar system on their home will generate during the darker, colder, and cloudier fall and winter months. How will a solar power system perform throughout the year? Is it really worth the investment? Electrical production needs to remain stable in order to settle seasonal solar power concerns.
Finding a Good Solar Company
A quality installation company should be able to de-rate your area and give electricity production estimates based on time of year and affecting weather so you can see the production of seasonal solar power. A solar panel system should be able to last for up to 25 years, operate year-round, and withstand extreme weather. It should also be able to handle heavy snow without damage, though you may want to install snow guards to protect kids, animals, and outdoor items. Solar panels are subjected to testing to create standards and should be able to withstand ping-pong-ball-sized hail at 70 mph.
In addition, a good solar power installation company should set up your system in the best location for maximum sun no matter the time of year.
Great news! Solar panels don’t just work in winter in some cases they may work better! Though they can have lower output due to the shorter days and snowpack, they are more efficient in the cold! When covered with snow, panels have decreased effectiveness, but will also melt snow more quickly! You don’t want clear panels yourself, but you do want to have a plan to clean underneath them. It’s a good idea to have a battery system in place that will provide benefits at night or during colder/ darker months.
While access to light is better in summer, solar panels are much less efficient in the heat. This lack of efficiency due to temperature keeps the amount of energy produced roughly the same as a cold, cloudy winter day. For example, a cloudy day with a temperature of 70 degrees produces 6kw. A sunny day at 90 degrees only produces 4.5kw. Plus, panels are so sensitive now that they will also pick up light from the snow!
Spring is considered the best time to install a solar panel system. The weather is mild so many homes can afford to have heating and cooling turned off during installation. Plus, this allows time for your solar panel company to customize your system to your usage and needs. In addition, it’s the best time for energy harvesting and battery charging or to sell back energy to your local power company. Remember, installing a solar power system can also increase your property values if you plan to sell your home!
Summer is the best time for solar panel maintenance and to track electricity production. Having a solar energy system helps to reduce your homes’ burden on your local electricity grid. Plus it saves you money on running your AC and can help ensure that if your electrical company has to put everyone through rolling blackouts, that your home stays nice and cool.
Fall is a great time to get a solar system installed and don’t worry about rain clouds. Solar cells can use direct or diffuse light, like the light that comes through rain or snow clouds. Plus, you’ll have quicker installation times since it’s the off-season. Rain has no effect on a quality energy system. The panels are waterproof and a good rain shower will actually clean them off. Since solar panels must be manufactured to withstand winds of 140mph you don’t have to worry about fall and winter storms.