HOW SOLAR WORKS?
When looking into solar panels, it is essential to understand how solar works in order for you to be able to take care of them well. Installing a solar panel system onto your roof takes the sunlight and converts it into electricity. Depending on where you live, many roofs take in sunlight all day long anyway, so adding in low-maintenance solar panels to your roof is using energy that is really already there. There are six components that go into creating solar energy.
- The Solar Panels: This is the key component to having solar power. The solar panels are comprised of photovoltaic (PV) cells. The PV solar cells absorb the sunlight and convert it into direct current (DC) electricity. It works because the cells are made up of crystals that all share electrons. When the light is absorbed, one of the electrons gets excited and starts to move around freely and produces electricity.
- The Inverter: Since most homes are powered with an alternating current (AC), an inverter is required to take the DC power and convert it into AC power in order to use the power from the solar panels in your home or business.
- The Electrical Panel: Once the power has been converted into AC, the AC electricity travels from the inverter to an electrical panel. The panel is what controls your outlets, lights, and appliances in your home or office. This is also known as a breaker box.
- The Utility Meter: This is a meter that measures how much energy you use. If you have enough sunlight, the meter will actually show your energy usage going backward as it reserves the electricity for nighttime use when the sun is not out.
- The Utility Grid: This is the power grid of your city or town. Even after you switch to a solar power system, you will still be connected to the grid. If you don’t have solar batteries or your system doesn’t collect enough sunlight during the day, you will still need to use the grid at night. The cost of nighttime use is often offset by the amount of excess energy you put back into the grid system during the day, so you still may not have a power bill.
- Solar Batteries: If you are looking to store your excess energy for use when there is no sunlight, like at nighttime, you may want to invest in solar batteries as well. This is not a required component, but one that may help if you live in a snowy area. A good solar battery has to be able to handle the demands of the unstable grid energy as well as heavy cycling and irregular full charging. Since there is a huge range of quality between solar batteries, you will want to check with SOLAR PRICE DISCOVERY before you make any solar battery purchases to ensure you are purchasing a battery system that is worth your money and one that works with your solar panel power system.