Two Common Solar Panel Myths Debunked

Residential use solar panels are extremely popular with over 400,000 homes with panel installations on their roofs. By the year 2020, projections show that millions of people may be using solar energy to power their houses. Solar panels may be right for your home, but you may be shying away from roof panels due to myths that you believe about the way the panels work. Keep reading to learn the truth about a few myths that may make you a bit more eager to invest in solar panels.

Myth - Panels Do Not Work In Cloudy And Cool Areas

When a professional solar panel installation expert plans the placement of the panels on your home, he or she will try to secure them on the South facing side of the residence. If you live in the northern hemisphere, then solar energy will be strongest towards the southern part of the home. As the sun travels from East to West, the solar panels will be able to catch the strongest energy beams from 9AM to 3PM

Solar panels work by absorbing the radiant light that is emitted from the sun. While clouds can absorb some of this light in the atmosphere, a great deal of the radiant light and solar radiation will move through the clouds. Since clouds are made up of tiny water droplets, they are not solid enough to completely stop the sun's rays from passing through. 

While solar panels will absorb the light on cloudy days, efficiency may drop by as much as 50%. If you live in a cloudy area, then you may need to invest in extra panels or a few more battery cells so stored electricity can be pulled to run the electrical appliances in your home on overcast days. 

If you live in a cloudy and cool area, then the cool nature of the weather may actually help to counteract the drop in efficiency cause by the clouds. Solar panels will not work as efficiently in hot weather. Specifically, energy production drops as the solar panels heat up. Heat is created as solar energy is converted into electricity, and the ambient outdoor temperatures can greatly increase heat levels around the panels. Cool outdoor temperatures can reduce heat gain around the panels so they can work as efficiently as possible. 

Myth - Solar Panels Can Cause Asphalt Roof Deterioration

Solar panels can easily be attached to steel roofs, and the panels are often clipped or snapped into place. Steel clips are typically added to the ribs, seams, or purlins that run across the roof. Solar panels are then adhered to the clips. While this makes installation extremely easy if you have a steel roof, it does not mean that solar panels cannot be added to asphalt roofs. 

If you have an asphalt roof, then a mount system will need to be secured. The base of the mounting system will consist of bolts that are fitted into the wooden beams of the roof. The beams must go through the asphalt shingles. However, the bolts are surrounded by wide pieces of metal flashing. Sealants are typically placed around bolts to reduce leak concerns. 

Once the bolts are secured, brackets are added to the bolts. Long metal mounts are then attached to the bolts. The solar panels are set on top of the long mounting strips. This means that the solar panels are not set on the roof, so they will not place direct pressure or stress on the asphalt shingles. Only the bolts, flashing, brackets, and mounts will make contact with the roof. These parts will place very little weight and pressure on the roof though. This means that roof damage is highly unlikely. In many cases, the solar panels will actually protect the shingles underneath them from solar, wind, snow, and ice damage. 

For more information, contact a solar panel installation company like AAA Solar Source.