Today in the United States, there are close to 3.5 million solar energy systems. There has been an enormous increase in the amount of residential solar systems over the past decade, thanks in chief to the ever-falling cost of installation. In the past 10 years, the price of solar panels has declined by 50%, making it an attractive option for homeowners looking to save on their electricity bills.
If you are planning to install a solar system on your property, it is essential that you consider solar panel orientation. In this blog post, we will highlight the best direction to install solar panels for optimum solar energy creation. We will also look at how direction affects the solar output.
What Is the Best Direction to Install Solar Panels?
In the United States, it is highly recommended that you install a residential solar panel system in a south-facing direction. For most homeowners, the roof will be the most suitable place on their properties to install solar panels, so opting for the south-facing side of the roof is ideal.
The reason is that solar panels installed in a south-facing direction will be able to attain what is known as maximum output. Installing solar panels in any direction other than ‘true’ south will result in a loss of output. For example, consider the following output loss:
- North-facing panels: 30%
- East or west-facing panels: 15%
- Southwest or southeast-facing panels: 8%
To ensure that you get the best output from your solar panels, it is advisable to partner with an experienced solar company. Continue reading here to learn more.
How Does Direction of Solar Panels Impact Its Output?
There are 3 main factors to consider here. The first factor is the number of degrees that solar panels are faced from the south. We have already touched on this point above; basically, the greater the turn away from a south-facing direction, the greater loss in energy out there will be.
The second point relates to the property’s latitude, specifically how far north your home is. A property in the north of the country with solar panels in misalignment will experience a greater loss in energy output compared to a property in the south that has the same degree of non-south alignment.
Finally, it is necessary to consider the pitch of your roof (if your solar panels are mounted on the roof of your property). Steeper roofs will increase the output drop for solar panels that are not in a south-facing alignment.
What You Need to Know About Solar Panel Orientation
The bottom line is that the best orientation for solar panels is to install them in a south-facing direction. For more information, we recommend that you speak to a reputable solar panel installation provider in your area.
Like this blog post on solar panel orientation? Be sure to check out our other informative articles on a wide range of interesting topics.