Solar Panel FAQs
If youíre thinking about installing solar panels on your home, you may have a lot of questions about the devices and the process of installing them. Here are some solar panels FAQs that may answer a number of your questions and help you decide if solar panels are right for you.
What is a Photovoltaic solar system?
Photovoltaic solar panels, or PV panels, make use of semiconductors to change light into electricity. They use no moving parts, do not need any fuel, and do not create any type of pollution. PV panels have actually been in use since the 1950s, although the theory behind them was conceived back in the early 1800s.
How do solar panels store power?
Solar panels can store power in two different ways. Some have large batteries that store up extra energy during the day and then use it at night once the sun goes down. Others donít use batteries but instead direct the extra electricity back to your local power grid. It actually turns your electric meter backwards, and your energy company will give you credit for this power.
What happens if my solar energy system runs out of power?
If your solar energy system runs out of energy due to a lack of sunlight or high energy usage, you may find your home has no power. One way to avoid this is to keep connected to your local power grid in case of emergencies. Note that if you do not have batteries to store energy, you will have to stay on your local power grid so that any excess energy can be directed there.
How do I decide how large of a solar panel grid I need?
You may not need to cover your entire roof with solar panels. Since the panels are so expensive, you donít want to buy any more than you actually need. To determine how many you need to completely offset your energy bill, take the total number of Kilowatt hours you used during the past twelve months. Then divide that number by 2000, the average amount of Kilowatt hours a 1 KW system will produce in a year.
How do I tell if my home will support solar panels?
To learn if your home can support solar panels, you should ideally have a solar power expert evaluate it. However, you can do a preliminary exam. The best roofs for solar panels face south and have little to no shade. They also have a good amount of space for panel installation.
Can I install solar panels myself?
In most cases, yes, you can. However, you may feel more comfortable hiring installers to do the work. This is especially true when it comes to the wiring. You have to wire the system into your homeís electric grid, and for those who have no experience in this area, it can be quite a daunting task.
Can I re-roof my home after installing solar panels?
Yes, in most cases you can easily remove the solar panels and then reinstall them after your new roof is put down.