Articles tagged "efficiency"

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Closeup photo of a solar panel
When will solar panels be more efficient?
When it comes to buying solar panels for your home, the first thing that manufacturers usually tout is the panel’s efficiency. Solar panel efficiency refers to the amount of sunlight hitting the panel that gets converted into electricity. The intensity of sunlight can be expressed in watts - the same unit used to measure electrical power. For example, if 1,000 watts of sunlight is shining on your solar panel and it generate 200 watts of electricity, the panel is 20% efficient.
Photo of a large house.
How many solar panels are needed to run a 4,000 square foot or larger house?
If you have a very large house, you probably have high electricity usage too, possibly making your home a good candidate for solar. If you’re curious about solar and want to find out how many solar panels you’d need for your home that is 4,000 square feet or larger, the most accurate way to find that out is to get a professional solar installer to perform an analysis. A quick but somewhat less accurate way is to read your monthly electric bill and use our solar calculator to determine what your power generation and estimated system price would be.
An example of a net zero home. Credit: Lord Contractors
Net zero homes explained (with 7 beautiful examples)
A net zero house is one that generates as much energy as it uses. Seems amazing, right? Even better: these homes look fantastic too. Think of all the things in your home that need power, from top to bottom: lights, cooking appliances, washer and dryer, heating and cooling, hot water, and lots of electronics. These things require a lot of electricity, but you probably have some appliances powered by fossil fuels: natural gas, heating oil, and propane are common heating fuels, depending on where you live.
How many solar panels do I need to run my house?
People often ask how many solar panels it takes to run a home with a particular square footage - a 2,000 foot or 2,500 house, for example. But square footage won’t answer that question because different homes of the same size can use wildly different amounts of electricity. The number of solar panels you need to run your home depends completely on how much electricity you use in a year. You can find this out by getting a copy of your electric bill and looking for the section that tells you how many kilowatt hours you were billed for.