Solar Panel Performance; What Factors Impact It?

solar panel performance

As Houston solar installers, a common question we hear amongst those acquiring systems is how to ensure their system’s optimal performance. Several factors affect solar panels’ performance, including controllable and uncontrollable elements. While there are environmental factors homeowners can’t control (like days of rain in June), there are some that they can. In this article, we will cover some of these controllable and uncontrollable factors. 

Solar Panel Performance – It All Starts With Sunshine

Optimum sun exposure is the most crucial factor for solar panel performance; mechanical issues aside, UV exposure is necessary for the system to perform as intended. Simply put, solar panels must receive direct sunlight to generate electricity, so the more sunlight they receive, the more energy they produce. 

While this is the primary responsibility of solar companies, it is essential to ensure that the panels are installed in a location that receives maximum sun exposure throughout the day; this means that trees, buildings, and other obstructions should not shade the panels. Any solar installer worthy of the title will consider all these factors and much more. 

Solar Panel Performance – Quality of Work and Equipment

System installation quality is a controllable factor that will undoubtedly, impact solar panel performance. While some homeowners fancy themselves as DIY solar installers, improper installation can lead to leaks, electrical issues, and other problems. When installed correctly, solar panels should last for at least 25 years and provide significant energy savings over their lifetime.

The quality of solar panels and inverters is also critical to the performance of a solar array system. Higher-quality panels and inverters generally come with a higher price tag but can significantly impact the efficiency of the system. 

The efficiency of solar panels is measured by their ability to convert sunlight into electricity, and higher-efficiency panels can produce more power from the same amount of sunlight. Similarly, high-quality inverters convert the DC electricity produced by the solar panels into AC electricity used by the home, ensuring that the system operates at maximum efficiency. That old adage, “You get what you pay for,” applies to solar gear. 

Solar Panel Performance – Somethings We Cannot Control

The temperature of the surrounding environment affects the performance of solar panels. It’s a misconception that “the hotter, the better” regarding solar array performance. Solar panels will actually produce more energy in cooler/moderate temperatures; excessive heat can reduce their efficiency. 

Very high temperatures can cause the panels to overheat, inhibiting energy output. However, modern solar panels are designed to operate at high temperatures, and homeowners should not worry too much about the impact of heat on their system’s performance.

The Perfect Day for Solar

Now, imagine a perfect day in Houston that would yield the best solar energy output. The installation has been done by one of the best solar companies in Texas. The solar inverter efficiently converts DC electricity to AC electricity, and the system is free from shading or obstructions. It is a sunny day, and the sky is clear, without any clouds in sight. The temperature is moderate, not too hot or too cold. The solar panels are installed on a south-facing roof, angled at 30 degrees to maximize sun exposure; this is what we call “solar bliss.” 

Several controllable and uncontrollable factors impact solar panel performance. Still, homeowners can take steps to ensure that their solar panel system operates at maximum efficiency. Working with experienced Houston solar installers, investing in high-quality panels and inverters, and regularly maintaining and cleaning the system will yield long-lasting results.

Contact us to learn more about solar installations and improving solar performance.