How to Minimise Shading Under-Performance in Solar Panels
When you install solar panels, sometimes you can face performance issues due to many factors. We list some of the common issues that property owners have with solar panel performance and give you some tips for dealing with them.
Physical Causes of Underperformance of Solar Systems
Although the sun in Port Macquarie and surrounding areas is ample to provide you with a plentiful supply of solar, many factors can affect the solar panel’s access to the sun.
Multiple Roof Directions
If you have a roof that runs in multiple directions this will by design cause shading on the roof. This gives you an instant mismatch for access to sunlight.
Chimneys and Antennas
Any item that has been placed or built into the roof can cast shadows and affect the performance of your solar panels.
Your Neighbour’s Home
If your neighbour’s house or other building is close, and / or casts shadows on your property this will give your solar panels less access to the sun and so reduce their productivity.
Trees, Leaves and Bird Droppings
If you have gorgeous shady trees in your yard, or even if your neighbour has, the shade that they provide can extend to your rooftop. This is less than ideal when you are using solar panels for electricity.
Leaves and bird droppings can also reduce the efficiency of solar systems. Installing an optimised system, whether for residential, commercial or off-grid will improve this until your solar panels can be cleaned.
Choosing Your Solar System
When choosing solar systems homeowners, business owners, and solar installers need to be aware of any shade issue. Buying the cheapest solar panel system on the market will just not give you the results that you need. If you have a mismatched solar panel system installed, power output will be reduced and serious damage to the panels can occur. Hot spots can even overheat and cause a fire.
If you have multiple roof directions, there are new or existing buildings next to the house, or trees nearby, it is highly likely that you will need an optimised solar system.
Any obstacle on your property’s roof such as a chimney, vent or pipe will affect the performance of your panels. If you are building a new home, consider that these factors will affect how your solar system works.
Keep all trees trimmed where you can. This may not be possible if the tree is on your nature strip or on a neighbour’s property of course.
Solar Panel Solutions to Gain a Better Yield
To maximise exposure to the sun and get the most electricity from your system, let your solar installers know about any shading issues that you have.
Solar panels that are divided into two and connected in parallel work as two independent traditional panels. The percentage of the panel that is blocked by shade affects the performance of your solar panel.
For example, if shading blocks a complete column one third of the performance decreases and the cell temperature rises.
When one row of the panel or cell is in shade only half of the panel is affected. When just one cell is blocked by shade just one sting is affected giving you a one sixth loss compared to full cell panels which lose one third power. So you lose only 50% as much electricity.
There are a number of optimisers and inverters which give your solar system maximum capacity.
If you have an existing system that is blocked by shade, or are looking for a new solar panel system and have shade issues, phone Always Energy on 1300 101 600 or contact us online for advice and a free quote. We service Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Newcastle, and surrounding areas. Our solar installers are trained and experienced at installation of solar on all types of properties.