How Does Solar Power Work?
Have you ever wondered how solar panels convert sunlight into electricity? And whether factors like cloud cover and shade affect solar systems? The benefits of solar energy are much broader than just lower electricity bills. They reduce carbon pollution and empower communities.
Solar power is being used everywhere in today’s society from home units and cottages to large corporations. Using solar is a win-win for everyone. The home owner or business owner lowers carbon emissions while saving on power bills. There are many benefits. If you do not use all your solar electricity you can even make a profit.
While the technology used to generate solar electricity may seem complex, it is actually quite easy to understand. Grid connect systems have a particularly simple setup.
Sunlight is Converted into Electricity
Solar panel converts sunlight, not electricity, which can be used in your home or business or be returned to the grid when it is not used. The solar panels are installed on your rooftop and generate direct current (DC) electricity. This electricity is fed into a solar inverter which converts the DC electricity produced by your solar panels into alternating current 240V(AC) electricity.
What Happens When there is no Sunlight?
At night time, or on highly cloudy days, the solar panels do not produce electricity. At these times the power comes from the main power grid. Your electricity provider charges you the usual fee for the power that you use during these times.
What are Solar Panels Made Up of?
Solar panels are made from silicon photovoltaic (PV) cells. Sunlight hits your solar panels and the PC cells of the panels absorb the sunlight’s rays. This produces DC electricity. The DC electricity is directed to your inverter. The inverter then converts the DC electricity into AC which is the form in which it can be used in your home.
A switchboard installed by your solar installers allows your AC electricity to be used by the electrical appliances in your homes such as power points and lights.
Because of the sunlight factor involved, there are certain times of the day where using electricity consumes less of your solar energy. Using the dishwasher, washing machine, and air conditioning etc through peak sunlight times can mean that your power bill will be less. The system works seamlessly – there is no need to switch it on and off and night. This is done automatically.
Any solar electricity that is not used will be fed back to the main grid and you will earn a credit on your power bill. This is known as a feed-in tariff.
What Type of Solar System Should I Use?
Choosing a quality solar energy system means that you will get the maximum benefit from the system. The smallest and cheapest solar panel system will not always give you the best benefits. There are many residential solar power, commercial solar systems, and off-the-grid solar systems to choose from.
Factors to consider when choosing a system include the size and direction of your roof, and the access to sun. If you have shady trees or buildings close to your home your solar system will be less functional. Talk to our solar installers at Always Energy about the best system for your needs.
Solar panels are usually placed on the roof facing north, however, they can be mounted at an angle that ensures the glass on the panels get the most access to the sun for your located. In most areas of Port Macquarie, Newcastle and surrounding areas this is approximately 30-40 degrees horizontally.
Everyone’s needs are different.
Always Energy has a team of trusted fully accredited solar installers and designers. We service Port Macquarie, Newcastle, Taree, and Coffs Harbour areas of New South Wales. For more information about how solar works, or for an obligation free quotation for solar panels for your home or business, contact us today.