Switching to solar energy can effectively help cut down your expenses and your carbon footprint. With that said, if you already have a solar energy system installed, you want to make sure that you’re taking full advantage of the available solar energy.
Here are a few tips to ensure that you’re getting the optimum output from your solar system:
Keep Those Panels Cleaned And Maintained
A bit of tender loving care (TLC) goes a long way with enhancing the lifespan of a solar panel along with improving its solar output.
Since solar panels don’t have any moving parts, they require little maintenance. But that also means they can accumulate dirt and dust which, can cause a 5% decline in their solar output.
With that said, you want to keep your solar panels cleaned regularly. You can do it yourself or hire a certified residential solar panels maintenance expert.
How often you should clean and maintain your solar panels will depend on several factors like location and how frequently it rains in your area.
Adjust Solar Panels
If your panels are not permanently installed, consider moving them throughout the day to generate the most electricity from them as possible. It is more doable for ground-mounted solar panels.
Preferably, you also want to adjust your panels on specific angles throughout the year.
There are several mathematical equations to position panels accurately based on your location; however, here’s a general rule of thumb.
In February and August, you need to tilt the solar panel at the same angle as your location’s latitude. By May, you should reduce the tilt angle by 15 degrees while adding a 15 degrees tilt in November.
Invest In A Solar Battery
Solar panels can only produce energy when the sun is shining. However, if you don’t want to limit your solar use during the daytime, you can invest in solar battery storage. It allows you to have a reserve power source at night or when sunlight is scarce.
In the earlier years of solar systems, solar-powered homes had to switch over to the local power grid after sunset. Nowadays, with solar storage solutions, you can now maximize the power generated by your solar panels day or night.
Manage Your Consumption
Battery storage can make your home independent of utility grids. However, that’s only if you can balance the production with your consumption.
You need to consider how much electricity is generated and compare it to how much electricity you use. This way, you can choose what activities or appliances you can run when your solar energy system produces the most power.
For instance, energy-intensive activities such as doing the laundry are best performed in the mornings or noontime when the panels are soaking up sun rays.
Using solar energy during the day can help prevent you from paying peak-hour prices on electricity from utility grids. With that said, you can check with your local utility for any incentives when you rely on solar during peak hours. Also, there are net metering programs that can optimize your solar savings by “selling” extra energy that your solar panels generate back to your utility grid.
Insulate Your Home
Heating and cooling your home make up one of the biggest energy consumptions in your home. And while solar panels can help you save money and reduce your dependence on utility grids, if your home’s energy use is inefficient, then your solar energy system will have a hard time producing the power you need.
So, make sure to repair or upgrade your ductwork insulation to optimize your HVAC performance and help prevent air leaks in your home. The less energy your HVAC uses, the more solar output you can divert to other uses.
Utilize A Solar Monitoring System
Solar monitoring systems allow you to keep an eye on the performance of your solar panels. It allows you to keep track of the amount of solar energy being produced by each solar panel. This way, you can determine if any of them requires maintenance or if their solar efficiency can be increased.
In addition, most system also gives you insightful data on past power production and consumption so you can optimize your power usage.
Most monitoring systems are available through an app or a mounted display, giving you access to updated information on your solar energy system anytime, anywhere.
And there you have it! The above tips should help improve and optimize your solar energy system’s efficiency to take your electricity savings and positive impact even further.