Before purchasing any solar equipment, you will need to calculate how much power you actually need. You can find online energy calculators that will help you figure out how much power your lights, appliances, and technology might require. It all depends on what you have and what your family’s needs are.
Solar panel modules work by charging batteries, so instead of plugging something into the wall, you are plugging into a battery that is pulling from the sun. It also involves a charge controller, batteries, a power inverter, and possibly a standby inverter. An engine generator is also usually part of the system as a backup. There are a handful of fuses and or circuit breakers, in addition to meters and a power center.
Solar Power Considerations:
- Solar powered energy is only as abundant as the sunlight is
- Solar energy does not accumulate at all through the night
- To have solar power you must have direct sunlight with no shadows
- You can have partial power on overcast days, but shadows falling directly on a panel will reduce power significantly
- The amount of power a panel or a kit produces depends on the number of modules and the number of daily hours of sunshine
- As far as lighting goes, low voltage is always the best idea. It is always best to check to make sure that the lighting is compatible with a power inverter.
Learn more about solar power considerations in our blog.