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How Does Solar Work at Night?

By: Eric Huesca, SEO Content Writer

July 22 2022

Residential solar panel installations have been a tremendous help to the owner save as much money as they can. Solar panels are designed to produce electricity using sunlight, that energy will be spent by you on any that requires electrical energy. If you happen to produce more energy than the amount you used, you will get credited through your power company. Those credits will be covered in further detail, but the credits are used in your power company’s account and can be used to cover days that did not produce as much. This helps use that excess energy in a form of credits. 


Solar Panel Installations

To benefit the most out of your solar panel energy system is that the amount of sunlight you get affects the amount of solar energy that you can produce. This can be important when looking at what kind of power you want to produce from your solar panels. In areas where they are more exposed to sunlight will tend to save more money than those with less sunlight. Energy consultants will work with you to figure out how to best optimize the installation to obtain solar energy. A solar company will look at your energy bill to see what kind of consumption you are getting every month and the energy consultants will design a solar plan with the proper number of solar panels, they must be in the most optimal location to obtain sunlight, and it need to connect to your current electrical system. 

Solar During the Day

When the sun is fully lit is when solar panels will intake the most sunlight to convert to solar energy. The amount of sunlight you can get involves multiple factors like shading, amount of sunlight, and the weather. The period of the day you can look to produce the most solar energy is between 11am – 4pm. The United States is an excellent location for solar due to the sun being overhead. Most of the solar panels you can buy today allow you to produce anywhere between 260 and 410 watts each per hour. Depending on where your target electric bill is, you can make more or less energy. The bigger you make your installation, the bigger the amount of energy you will be able to generate. Some homes are big and require a large solar panel installation to compensate for the high usage of electricity. A smaller home would need less panels to tackle their energy usage, these plans are made so that the homeowner can start to save money on their bills and start using that money in other areas. Benefits from solar can help other areas of life become easier for you. The type of solar panel you get might also affect your solar energy production due to the technology they are made out off. Polycrystalline solar panels are cheaper but produce less energy, monocrystalline solar panels use high grade silicon that allows the panel to produce more energy. 

Solar During the Night

The night is not what you think, it is not an off switch on your solar energy production. The moon can reflect sunlight from the sun during the night, but it will not be enough as it was during the day. Some depending on your usage and solar panel size, you might end up getting credits to use at times like the nighttime to cover those costs. The credits will be stored in your account with your power company and will be used when you need them. That is one of the positive values solar panels provide, you can build a system that will produce a lot more energy than what is used to cover for the lack of sunlight during the wintertime. You can have a certain number of credits already in your account to cover the amount the solar might not be able to obtain. During the wintertime, the sun is usually the furthest from the planet and therefore limits the amount of sun rays that can hit the planet. With that reaction of the rotation of our solar system, you also get cloudy skies that further block the sunlight from hitting the surface of the planet. Even snow-covered solar panels can obtain enough sunlight to produce solar energy, might not be enough energy to cover costs but the fact that sunlight can travel a couple inches through snow. 

Should you worry about it?

The nighttime for solar owners might seem like a problem when creating energy is the main goal of creating solar energy that will help alleviate your electric bill. Nighttime means you cannot produce and cannot create value, but solar panel installations are meant to create enough energy to cover your daily consumption which is your 24-hour day. You produce enough energy during the day to cover for energy consumption during the night. Some systems will make more energy than what is consumed during the 24-hour day, the excess energy is sent back to the power grid where you be credited for the energy. You can you those energy credits to cover for the lack of sunlight you will get in the wintertime. 

Residential Solar At Night

Solar Panel Close Up

The amount of energy you produce in the wintertime is lower than the amount you get during the summertime, so the amount of saving will not be as much. 

Your solar energy might not be able to cover the complete usage of energy in your home uses during the winter so those energy credits will then get used to cover the cost and bring your energy bill down during the wintertime. You should worry about unless you are in an area where the time of sun is a lot shorter than areas with a lot of sun. Like in Alaska, there is a span of 4 months where there will be 30 days of dark night and 30 days of sunlight. The month where it is constantly generating solar can cover for the month that doesn’t produce sunlight whatsoever. They think about that is, that the rest of the year is mostly dark, the days are shorter so obtaining solar in this area might not be as beneficial as it would in mid-American. 

The way solar energy systems work is that they are designed to target an energy bill in mind, and they take the monthly average of their bill and will build a plan that will allow the homeowner to save money on their utility bill. The plan includes the full 24 hours which means that the system will make enough to cover usage at night and will keep energy consistent throughout your home. Solar panel technology is getting better, and some places are already developing panels that can use moonlight to create solar energy. As time goes on, nighttime will become less of a negative impact for solar. Till then, you can trust that your solar panels will get the job done as intended, just build a power plan that fits your needs. Another important thing about getting solar is that you are going to being creating energy that is starting to become more valuable. The value of the energy you create will start to be worth more and solar will do an excellent job to alleviate those costs and help your family not think about your utility costs. The value solar provides will build up and become a very useful resource four your entire family. 

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Solgen Power is a solar energy contractor that sells and installs solar for homeowners. Solgen Power has been recognized by INC. 5000 as one of the fastest growing companies in the nation. Solgen Power has grown nationwide and continues to provide excellent customer service to homeowners.

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Copyright © 2022 Solgen Power, All Rights Reserved