Posted by Todd Filbrun on Mon, Dec 17, 2012 @ 01:00 PM
The decision to adopt renewable energy for your home or business is a big one, but the money you will save in the long run is a major incentive. If you're considering a change in your home energy systems, you probably have a lot of questions.
One of the most common questions homeowners have when exploring renewable energy is: how do solar panels work? In the simplest terms, this is how solar works:
- Solar energy hits the photovoltaic panels on your roof. This energy cannot pass through trees or other objects that create a shadow on the panel, but it can pass through clouds. This is one of the reasons you can still get a sunburn on a cloudy day.
- Photovoltaic panels convert solar energy into another type of energy called direct current (or DC) electricity.
- The DC current flows to an inverter that changes it to alternating current (or AC) power, which you can then use in your home to power virtually anything that uses electricity.
So, how do solar panels work in bad weather? Just like they do in good weather. The only difference is that less solar energy will reach the panels, making them a bit more inefficient. When this happens, there will be some stored energy in the system that will be used first, but you might also have to draw from the grid. You don't have to do anything; a grid-tied system will automatically draw energy from the local utility when there is not enough solar power to meet your energy needs.
Just like it will not pass through leaves or other object, solar energy does not pass through snow on your panels. However, you can use a telescoping brush to clear the snow off the panels so you can continue to benefit from solar energy all winter long.
If you have questions about how solar panels work or how you can save money by going solar, call the experts at Kurios Energy. We're happy to answer all of your questions about solar technology, financing, economics, maintenance, and more.
Have you been thinking about going solar? Tell us more about what's holding you back.