Do Solar Panels Generate Power on Cloudy Days?

Solar Lesson #16
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Do Solar Panels Generate Power on Cloudy Days?

Do Solar Panels Generate Power on Cloudy Days?

Clouds are not really the obstacle they appear to be. Many people think solar panels work best in sun-blasted regions with few or no clouds. That's not quite true. Solar panels produce energy by converting sunlight to direct current (DC) and then an inverter turns that into alternating current (AC), which is the type of power most houses run on. Cloudy days create an estimated power drop-off of about 10 to 25 percent from what you see on a sunny day. But sometimes clouds can actually enhance the performance of solar panels at times by reflecting or magnifying sunlight.

More importantly, even conventional solar panels generate power with the sunlight filtering through a cloudy sky, and hyper-efficient Solar panels like SunPower really shine at those times. SunPower's Maxeon solar cell technology uses a one-of-a-kind design that captures a broader range of sunlight to provide record-breaking efficiency – the highest of any available panels on the market.

SunPower also uses an ultra-pure type of silicon and a solid copper foundation that keeps its panels working efficiently even after prolonged exposure to wind, rain, snow and other severe weather. In field testing across eight years and 800,000 panels at 264 sites, SunPower solar panels demonstrated the lowest degradation rates in the industry, almost four times stronger reliability than conventional panels. That's why SunPower panels are backed by the industry-leading SunPower Complete Confidence Panel Warranty.

When the weather gets really wild – like, knock-out-the-grid wild – SunPower's SunVault storage system can provide timely backup power for your home. But even when the grid's humming along just fine, SunVault allows homeowners to store solar during the day and use it when needed.

Economic factors – not just weather patterns and SunPower technology – help explain why people in cloudy regions love solar power. The biggest driver of solar power's popularity in any region is the cost of electricity, not the amount of sunlight that area sees. That's why many of the biggest U.S. solar cities are famously un-sunny places. The same is true of solar countries. For instance, Germany and South Korea – countries with plenty of cold, wintry weather – are two of the biggest adopters of solar.

Qualified solar installers like Viridis Energy know how to design your system to minimize any shading issues – whether it from clouds or nearby trees. We have the expertise in your community's weather and installation rules to tailor your home's PV solar system for maximum efficiency.

Reach out to Viridis Energy Solutions to set up your no cost analysis with a professional solar consultant today. Get started and request your FREE quote below.