Are you interested in installing solar photovoltaic (PV) system in your Tampa home? As a resident of the Sunshine State, you are fortunate enough to get plenty of sunshine throughout the year. So, if you are keen on installing solar panels for your home, Tampa is the place to be. Your goal should be to make the most out of these PV systems. But how?
To decide on the number of panels you must install, you first need to analyze your household’s energy consumption. You should also take into account the climatic conditions, your roof’s architecture, the usable area and the angle at which the panels should be installed. There are other aspects to consider such as the efficiency of the technology and the wattage of the panels. To get answers to all these questions, you need to have a word with a certified solar installer. Here are some of the factors a professional will consider to ascertain the number of solar panels you need for your home:
Efficiency of the Panels
The efficiency of home solar panels depends on a number of factors. You may have invested in a first-rate product, but its productivity will not be the same at all times. Issues pertaining to hardware and cloud cover may affect the efficiency of your solar system from time to time. As far as hardware problems are concerned, they may result in less energy production than anticipated. According to solar experts, you must add at least a 25 % ‘cushion’ to your daily average target to counterbalance hardware issues.
How much electrical energy does your household consume? Look at your past power bills as a reference. If your utility bill shows a daily average, there is nothing like it. If it doesn’t, simply divide the annual or monthly average by 365 or 30 days respectively. Your answer should be in kilowatt-hours (kWh), a product of how much power you are consuming and the total time for which you are using it. This means if you are using a 60-watt bulb throughout the day, your household is consuming (60×24) 1.4 kWh or 1,440 watt-hours.
Hours of Sunshine Received
The total number of sunshine hours in your area will have a direct effect on the efficiency of your solar panels. Homeowners in Tampa can expect to receive 6:44 hours of sunshine each day in the month of December and 10:13 hours every day in May. With 101 clear days the total sunlight hours in Florida almost touches 3,000 annually and 8:8 daily. If you are from Tampa, expect to receive more sunlight hours than you would if you were from an area with less daily average sunshine.
The quality of a panel plays a crucial role in meeting your solar energy needs. The performance and capabilities of these systems vary from one product to the other. When it comes to residential PV panels, expect to get wattages varying between 150 and 345 watts for each panel. This further depends on the cell technology employed to manufacture the panels as well as the size of the products. To determine the number of panels you require for your home, simply divide your household’s hourly energy needs by the panels’ wattage. This will help you set a realistic expectation.
While installing solar panels for your Tampa home, get a professional installer to calculate the number of panels you will need to meet your household’s energy consumption. An installer will also educate you about the panel inclination and roof architecture to help you derive the maximum benefit out of your PV system.