Solar panels are a worthy investment, but newcomers to the subject have many questions. Luckily, asking questions will make you more in-tune with how these systems work to benefit buildings daily. For instance, a common question that newcomers have is “How do clouds affect solar panel efficiency?” Browse the guide below to learn how your solar panels will function in the face of cloudy skies.
Solar Energy & Cloudy Days
Instead of pulling energy from the grid, solar panels draw their power from the sun’s rays, giving your building an ample supply of clean, eco-friendly energy. However, because the system relies on the sun, it’s understandable to fear that bad weather will hinder your panels’ performance.
To put it simply, cloudy days can impact solar energy intake, but not as substantially as you might expect. For instance, a few rogue clouds in the sky aren’t going to leave you powerless. On gloomier days, solar batteries can keep your home powered.
Backup Solar Batteries
Installing solar batteries with your system provides the building with an extra place from which to draw energy. As the system transfers the sun’s rays into electricity, it stores extra power in the batteries. So, if the weather worsens or your area has a power outage, you can rely on the battery to provide you with electricity in the meantime. As you’ll learn below, clouds aren’t inherently an enemy of solar panels.
Benefits of Shady Days
The answer to “How do clouds affect solar panel efficiency?” varies by weather conditions. Clouds floating lower to the ground may slightly diminish incoming solar rays, but clouds higher in the air can amplify energy intake. When higher clouds interact with incoming sunlight, they can reflect down at the ground, helping solar panels below drink up even more energy. Whether you have a standard rooftop system or a backyard solar panel pergola, reflective light from clouds will do more good than harm.
As you can see, the cloud formations above your home impact solar intake, but it’s not as straightforward as newcomers expect. Suffice it to say that you don’t have to worry every time the weather is overcast. Instead, you can rest easy knowing that your system won’t shut down on a cloudy day.