Solar panels are the workhorses of a solar energy system, and as such need to be durable enough to withstand often-brutal weather conditions . While the length and strength of sunlight is, of course, the main factor that determines the efficiency of a panel’s power production, temperature can also play a significant role on how a solar energy system performs.
How Temperatures Impact Effectiveness
When a panel gets extremely hot, its energy efficiency is reduced. According to a 2007 experiment conducted in the United Kingdom, for every degree Fahrenheit the temperature rises over 107 degrees, solar panels typically lose about 1.1 % of their peak output. A study in Nigeria conducted in 2008 found similar results. In this study, efficiency suffered after the temperature of the panel reached 111 degrees. Since solar panel temperatures are typically about 20 degrees hotter than ambient temperatures, a slight decrease of efficiency, according to the studies, takes place when the air temperature starts to get warmer than about 87-91 degrees. Solar panels normally work at optimum efficiency when the weather is cold and sunny.
Improvements in Technology
But the effect that temperatures have on the effectiveness of solar panels can vary greatly depending on the quality of the panel being deployed. The studies mentioned above were conducted in 2007 and 2008 – and the quality of panels has improved considerably since then. Today’s panels are not only more durable, they are also more efficient than ever. If you are considering making the switch to solar energy, it is extremely important that you choose a contractor who will provide clear, easy-to-understand answers to all of your questions.
At Global Efficient Energy, we realize that going solar is a substantial investment. As such, we want all of our customers to be 100 percent comfortable and confident before they make this commitment. If you are thinking of having solar panels installed, get in touch with us and we will make absolutely sure that whatever doubts you may have are addressed honestly and frankly. Give us a call at 1-888-826-7881 or contact us online to learn more.
By Abe Issa
Founder and CEO
Global Efficient Energy