Do Solar Panels Work Without Sun?

o solar panels work without sun

Do Solar Panels Work Without Sun?

If you’re considering switching to solar energy, you may be wondering what happens to your power when there is little or no sun. Luckily, solar panels do work without direct sunlight, and can even provide power at night with solar storage solutions. 

The solar experts at Energy Saving Pros can help you determine if your home is a good candidate for solar power, and back up your panels with solar batteries. Continue reading to learn more about how solar panels can work without the sun. 

How Do Solar Panels Work Without Sun?

Solar panels must be able to absorb sunlight in order to convert that energy into electricity. A south-facing roof that receives little to no shade is the best candidate for solar, because it will naturally get the most sunlight. However, that doesn’t mean your home can’t benefit from solar if your roof faces in another direction or if it’s partially covered by shade. Although solar panels work best in direct sunlight, they can also work with indirect sunlight. 

Do Solar Panels Work in the Shade?

Solar panels do still work in the shade. If your roof receives partial shade throughout the day, or is entirely shaded for short periods of time, solar power can still be a good option for you. However, if your roof is entirely in shade for most or all of the day, then your solar panels won’t be very effective. Although they still absorb sunlight in the shade, solar panels still require some direct sunlight throughout the day to be able to power your home efficiently.

Do Solar Panels Work on Cloudy Days?

Just like shade from trees or other buildings, the weather can also affect the efficiency of your solar panels. For instance, when it is cloudy, your solar panels will keep working, but the energy output will be lower than it is on sunny days. The clouds block the sun, inhibiting sunlight from reaching your panels.

In winter, snow can build up on your panels and prevent them from absorbing sunlight. Luckily, this problem is rare, because solar panels usually stay hot enough to melt the snow. Don’t try removing snow from your panels yourself, because you might accidentally damage them. If snow builds up on your panels and doesn’t melt, contact a solar professional for maintenance and cleaning

Do Solar Panels Work at Night?

Solar panels do not work at night because there is no sunlight to absorb, but they can still power your home. Solar panels produce more energy than necessary throughout the day as long as they receive enough sunlight. That extra energy can be accessed through net metering or backup batteries to give you continuous access to solar electricity. 

Net metering sends the excess electricity that your solar panels generate back to the grid. You then receive a credit for that extra energy, so that you can access power from the grid at night and on cloudy days at no extra cost. However, that means your solar panels will not work if there is a power outage that affects the grid. 

Backup batteries are a long-lasting solar storage solution that can keep your home powered during storms, high winds, and wildfires. Solar batteries store the extra electricity that your panels produce throughout the day for you to use at night and whenever the power goes out. 

Solar Power Solutions in Sacramento

Investing in solar power can help you save money on your energy bills and reduce your carbon footprint. The experts at Energy Saving Pros install and maintain solar panels and backup batteries across Northern California. If you have any questions about solar power or would like to request a free quote, give us a call at 916-259-2501 today.

Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (5/18/2022). Photo by Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash