Solar panels give optimal output by capturing sunlight and converting light energy into electrical energy. That’s why any form of shade can directly affects their functionality. Research suggests that if even 1% of solar cells are in shadow, the capacity for power production drops by 50-80%. There’s more! An evenly cast shade like that from clouds doesn’t dampen the efficacy, but uneven shading reduces the solar panel’s lifespan. Hence, most solar panel installation agencies advise against placing solar panels where any object might obstruct them.
Wondering what could be causing the shading? Here are a few examples of physical or topographical obstruction:
- Hill or mountain
- Nearby building
- Vents or chimney
- Snow or ice
- Adjacent racks
- Mounting racks
That said, after being in the solar industry since 2014, we have a few tricks up our sleeves to improve solar power production. Let’s discuss them.
With the help of bypass diodes, the current produced by solar cells bypasses the shaded cells. In short, you will be able to isolate underperforming cells. Thus, they would have no effect on the solar panels.
Here, each module in an array has a parallel connection instead of a serial connection. When the connection is serial, the shading of one module affects the functionality of the other modules. However, when connected parallelly, you can eliminate this anomaly and maximize productivity.
A DC optimizer can optimize current and output voltage, thus maximizing solar power generation. This device will boost the lower current that a shaded cell would produce to match the standard current produced by unshaded modules. Hence, each cell of your solar panel will produce equally, and the overall generation will remain uncompromised.
You can ask your technician to attach a microinverter to each module, which will then convert DC to AC. Since the outputs are in a parallel connection, one module’s malfunctioning will not impact other modules in the array.
Ahead of designing, ask the technician to consider the possible blockage. Regular maintenance is also an effective way to reduce the shading effect. Also, ground-mounted solar panels are more at risk in comparison to rooftop ones. Before wrapping up, we would like to highlight that the placement of the panels will influence the power generation. Use the discussed solutions to raise your residential solar panels. And if you need any help, we are here for you! Let us know the ideal time to reach you and one of our experts will help you get your solar panels the best care.