Cloudy weather – will your solar panels still function?
It’s not hard to see why some people may not be too thrilled with cloudy weather. The idea of relying on the availability of sunlight in order to power their homes or buildings seems problematic. Especially if they live in places where the weather is less than ideal and the sky is always overcast, having access to adequate sunlight becomes an issue of efficiency and sustainability.
What happens when the sun is behind the clouds?
In cloudy weather, solar panels don’t get nearly as much sun as they would need. Still, they will be able to convert available light into energy—but output is reduced. If it’s very cloudy, estimates have the figure at around 25 percent of the usual output on a typical sunny day. That is a drop-off in capacity, but the system will still work! Continue reading to see how this is easily compensated for in a well designed system.
What about partly cloudy weather with a little sunlight?
For partly cloudy weather, it is estimated that solar power systems can generate up to 80% of its capacity. That’s good enough for most home applications depending on the size of the system and the power requirements of the facility.
The viability of solar as a long-term energy solution is always feasible. Your installation company will show you how efficient and reliable a good system will be. Because you can almost always count on it to give you a fair amount of the power, the savings you make will much more than offset the costs of installation
Is there a difference for large-scale solar installations?
That’s for smaller-scale applications. For large-scale facilities, cloudy days aren’t really a problem because the facilities are located strategically or have backup systems that generate power by other means. Households and smaller setups don’t always have that luxury, but some additional equipment can offset this, even in less-than-optimal conditions.
There are also various systems that can help maximize the level of solar radiation reaching your panels. A good installation company will ensure that you have the maximum coverage available on your roof. Getting the positioning and angle of the panels optimally adjusted. This helps get more sunlight to the panels and ensures an efficient supply of power. Even though clouds diffuse sunlight, enough gets through to keep the system operating on most days.
Banking on the battery bank
Some locations have cloudy weather for a good percentage of the year. The solution is to utilize sunny days to store any excess energy generated in battery backup units. Having a proper battery bank in place can go a long way towards making sure you have enough juice for your home or building even during periods where there’s not enough sun.
Since energy storage can cost a bit, it’s not always a necessity. The power produced by your system may well be more than enough for most days. Especially if the system can readily switch to grid-supplied power. If you’re interested in getting battery solutions for your solar energy system, consult with your provider. They will identify your capacity and storage requirements based on local conditions.
Overcast doesn’t mean no power!
An overcast sky does not mean the end of the usefulness of your solar power system. Fortunately, Maryland has plenty of sunny days, so it’s rarely a problem. We are lucky in being one of the states where solar is really proving efficient and become more popular by the day. The cost saving is so great that it’s a no brainer to switch from the grid to solar!
Any surplus summer energy is waiting for you to use on cloudy days!
With a properly installed system, your panels will be producing much more energy on sunny days than your daily needs require. This solar energy never goes to waste! It is automatically fed back into the commercial grid. There it remains “banked” for your later use, whenever you require it. So you will always have a store of free energy to draw on. Ready for you when the days are short and the nights long!
Don’t let yourself be swayed away from solar just because winter is here. You will most definitely still be able to enjoy the benefits of a solar power system. Even when the temperatures drop and the nights grow long. So go online now and contact Renewable Energy Corporation, Maryland’s premier solar suppliers, for a free no-obligation quote.!