Is My House Suitable for Solar Panels?

November 14, 2022

Is My House Suitable for Solar Panels?

Is My House Suitable for Solar Panels?

In a world where the last seven years have been the warmest on record, sadly, more than one million species are at risk worldwide due to climate change. Climate change in the United States has led to the country warming by 2.6 degrees F since 1970, and so homeowners across the country are searching for new ways to lead a more sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle. The pressure to undo what fossil fuels have done to the planet is a massive concern for Americans, and with the cost of living on the rise, solar panels are becoming one of the most popular ways of reducing a family’s carbon footprint.

Installing solar panels can be a way of dealing with both of these issues in the home, and so you may be wondering, “Should I get solar panels?” With so many myths and untrue facts doing the rounds online, here’s what you should know when it comes to confirming if your house is suitable for solar panel installation. 

When looking to make the solar power jump, there are a few factors to consider to make sure it is the right decision for your home. 

Your Home, Roof Position and Weather

Firstly, what kind of roof do you have? Solar panels work best with strong, durable roofing material (composite, asphalt shingle, concrete tile or standing seam metal.) For softer materials such as wood shake and slate tile or roofs made of clay with mortar-coated steel, you can still opt for solar power; however you may want to choose a supplier who has experience in this type of installation to ensure all is correct and safe. 

While we are on the subject, if your roof is due to be replaced at any point in the near future (25 years or less) it is a good idea to do this home improvement before you consider installing solar panels. You are potentially adding additional weight to your home from the top down, and so from a safety point of view, you should only do so if the roof is in a good and strong condition. 

The main initial concern of any household looking to install solar panels on the roof is the amount of sunlight your roof will receive. When you initially speak with a supplier, they should take out a suitability visit and consultation based on your home orientation. Although houses that are south-facing often receive more sunlight, it tends to be tree placement and roof angle that would be more of an issue when making the decision if installing solar panels is the right choice. 

Although local climate can also have an effect on how much energy will be created. It is possible to install solar power equipment in all climates, from rainy to hot and dry. Only if you live in an area of extreme weather can this be an issue, so it would be worth checking the durability of the panels you are considering for your home. 

Do You Have Enough Space Available For the Equipment?

A final consideration for your home in the early stages of this process is the space that you have available for installing solar panels. With a quick at-home test, you can tick this one off the list yourself. The steps to follow for your own at-home solar panel space calculation would be: 

1.    Check out your electricity bill to see how many kWh on average your home uses. 

2.    Measure your available roof space. The average solar panel is around 17.6 square feet and will produce 265 watts under direct sunlight per day- 15 watts per square foot. 

3.    Figure out how many panels will fit in your available roof space by dividing your square footage by 17.6.

4.    Then, multiply the number of panels by 265 watts and then by 30 days. 

Do the numbers match up with the amount of electricity you use per month? If so, you have enough space, if not, you may still be able to use solar energy to supplement your usage, reducing your monthly costs from the more traditional suppliers. 

If you have managed to answer yes to most of the above points, it may be time to get in touch with an expert to confirm that your home is a good candidate for solar panels and decide what type of system would work best for your needs! Feel free to reach out to our team today!