Solar panels produce the most electricity on days with clear skies and plentiful sunshine. But all is not lost on cloudy days – typical solar panels can generate anything between 10-25% of their estimated capacity. The amount will vary depending on the type of solar panel as well as the cloud coverage. Modern PV systems actually function better in cooler temperatures.
UV light also reaches the earth’s surface even when it’s cloudy. Have you ever gotten a sunburn when it was overcast? Then you have firsthand experience of this. Even during the grayest days, visible light still gets through clouds and rain. Whether it’s cloudy or foggy outside, even the most standard solar panel will produce some power during daylight.
What if you live in a place where it’s mostly overcast?
If you’re thinking about investing in solar panels to help you save money on your electricity bill, you need to examine how much sunshine you receive annually and not on a specific day. In South Africa, however, we have an abundance of sunshine and while the winters in the Western Cape might get a little dreary, the amount of daylight is still enough to make solar power a legitimate option.
Another option is to invest in solar batteries. They can help you save money by storing free energy to use on cloudy or rainy days.
Even in places like Germany where it can be grey throughout most of the year, they have successfully installed approximately 25 gigawatts of solar power. This accounts for 50% of their electricity needs. The UK is not far behind and has experienced enormous success with its solar initiatives.
Overcast days will come and go, but on average, it won’t affect the ROI of solar panels. If you would like to find out more about saving on electricity bills even when it’s cloudy or rainy out, speak to the team at Nupower today.