Will seasonality affect your solar savings? The answer depends on the time frame in question.
Technically speaking, your solar system’s electrical output is affected by a variety of things, including temperature, irradiance, air quality, conductive resistance, and balance of system component efficiency. And yes, the most productive environmental conditions for solar modules are those long, sunny, dry, clear days when the temperature is around 72° F. How much electricity your system is expected to produce, and therefore how much money it is expected to save you, though, is based on annual estimates, not moment-to-moment or even day-to-day snapshots of time. So, things like cold snaps, storm fronts, heat waves, or any other normal season variation in atmospheric conditions will not affect the system’s projected savings.
In other words, while its true that your solar system’s electrical production will be higher when, for example, the modules are in the sun rather than when under the cover of passing clouds, solar systems are designed with things like fluctuations in light and heat in mind, so no single season should affect your projected yearly electrical cost savings. That’s why it’s critical to work with a solar installation company that will get the system design and installation right from the start.
Good solar design starts with quality products optimally configured to take best advantage of the available sunlight, and carries through to an accurate assessment of the system’s expected annual and service life productivity. This is where things like your system’s orientation to the sun (azimuth) proximity to shading (i.e., trees, chimneys, other houses), and available installation come into play.
Your modules’ orientation and tilt towards the sun directly affects how much light they will receive. If your installation is partially in the shade this will also greatly affect the amount of electricity you produce. Lastly, space is important for an obvious reason – the more space your solar installation takes up, the more sunlight it will capture
It’s important to talk with your solar company and make sure these three factors are helping you create more energy. Here at California Solar Electric, we use only the most up to date technology to predict shade in the various seasons and take into account tree growth. We also know how to create maximum space. Ground installations can have the same affect as roof installations if not better if it means you have more space and less shaded area.
Overall, it’s safe to assume the summer months will generate more power than winter months. However, it is important to look at your savings over the whole year. Not just month-by-month. This way you can see the combined earnings throughout the changing of the seasons