Sunny days lead to efficient energy production when it comes to solar panels. Although they produce less power when the clouds come out, bad weather isn’t really an obstacle to generating clean, renewable energy.
While it’s true that solar panels generate less power on cloudy days, cities with consistent inclement weather like Seattle, Portland, New York and San Francisco help lead the nation in the number of homes that have solar panels installed.
To figure out why solar power remains popular in cities that experience more rain and clouds relative to other large metropolitan areas, you first have to understand how solar panels produce energy. Solar arrays convert sunlight into direct current or DC. An inverter then transforms that power into alternating current or AC. Most homes and home electronics run off of AC power. On a cloudy day, solar panels can see an estimated power drop-off of about 10 to 25 percent compared to what they generate on a sunny day. On the flip side, clouds can sometimes enhance the performance of solar panels by reflecting or magnifying sunlight.
Here’s an interesting twist when it comes to the effects of weather on your solar panels. Hotter climates negatively impact the power output of solar arrays. Solar panel output begins to decrease if temperatures rise above 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius).
At Good Energy Solutions, we prefer to install SunPower solar panels that utilize Maxeon® solar cell technology. These hyper-efficient solar cells can better filter luminescence through a cloudy sky to capture a broader range of sunlight than other solar panel brands.
SunPower also employs an ultra pure type of silicon and a solid copper foundation that keeps your panels working efficiently, even after prolonged exposure to wind, rain, snow and other severe weather. Conventional solar cells lose power over time because of corrosion and breakage, but the unique design of SunPower solar cells eliminates 85% of the reasons conventional cells fail. With these unique solar cells, you’ll enjoy outstanding performance and savings with your commercial or home solar system for decades to come. That’s why SunPower panels are backed by the industry-leading SunPower Complete Confidence Panel Warranty.
During severe weather events that might blackout your solar power production, Good Energy Solutions also offers several different battery backup solutions. During power outages, a backup battery can supply enough power to keep your most important appliances operating including refrigerators and sump pumps. Also, a correctly configured battery storage system can discharge power during peak times, so you don’t pay higher rates to utilities that charge a time-of-use rate.
If your solar panel system doesn’t have a battery backup, you can still use your surplus solar energy at night and during stormy days. With net metering, the excess power your solar panels produce during a normal day is exported to the utility grid. You receive credits from your electricity company for this power, which accumulate in your account. You can use these credits to help pay for your electricity bill.
When it comes to solar power, cloudy days provide few obstacles to getting the most out of your system.
Our mission at Good Energy Solutions is to provide our customers with honest, real solutions to reduce their fossil fuel consumption and lower their long term energy costs. “Energy with Integrity” isn’t just a company slogan, it’s how we do business.
Founded in 2007 by Kevin and Shana Good, Good Energy Solutions has earned a reputation for our expert reliable service, long workmanship warranties, and quality commercial and residential solar installations.
If you would like to know more about solar power for your home or business, contact us here.