How Many Solar Panels Do I Need
“How many solar panels do I need?” That’s the big question. Let’s figure it out.
I’m here today to answer one massive question we get all the time. It’s one of the things we get asked most often. And it’s how many solar panels do I need on my home? That’s a great question to ask.
The better question you should be asking is, how much power do I need to produce? Then we could just do the math.
So let’s talk about this, though, and how this all works.
Let's go back a few years.
The first cell phone I had was one of those Motorolas. It was shaped like a peanut, and it had a little antenna that you pulled out. It was the worst thing ever, by the way.
I don’t know if you remember, but if you tried to text, you had to sit there and hit the button three times just to get to the letter you wanted. I never even used it for texting because of this reason.
Think back to the cell phones like that. Remember what we used to pay for? We didn’t have unlimited minutes or unlimited data. There was no such thing as data. What we paid for were minutes.
That was the only way the phone company could figure out how to charge us. We paid for how many minutes we used and how many texts we sent out.
Your power bill is just like the old school phone bills.
Let’s just talk about the minutes. Your power bill is just like that. In the end, no matter how you want to slice it, your power bill is actually being charged by something called a kilowatt-hour, so just like a cell phone, you get charged for minutes.
Every month, every day, you are racking up kilowatt-hours in usage. That’s being counted on your meter. That’s running through over to San Diego, Gas Electric, (SDG&E), or PG&E if you’re in NorCal or whoever else in between, right? They are sitting there like our cell phone companies used to do.
How Many Solar Panels Do I Need to Replace Those Kilowatt-hours?
These little kilowatt-hours are what you want to ask about. You need to know how many panels you’ll need to replace those kilowatt-hours, so you’re not having to flip switches and always run around the house, turning things off and worrying that your rates are going way up.
It's No Obligation.
To figure out how many solar panels you need for your home, you need to look at your power bill.
Everything I’m about to walk you through, don’t let it overwhelm you. I’ll show you at the end of this blog a way that we’ll just do it for you for free with no obligations from you.
Hang with me here, but hear me out because it is good to be educated about how you get charged for your power bill now.
Also, if you do get solar, it’s great to know how many panels you’re going to get.
All you’re going to need to do is grab your power bill and look for a graph. Now, most of you actually buy gas and electric. If you’re with SDG&E, that’s gas and electric. If you’re with PG&E, that’s gas and electric. We are only looking for that chart that has electric.
A big mistake people look at is their full power bill and think that’s their power bill, but your power bill also includes gas. Gas doesn’t matter for this, though. We’re not talking about gas here. There are no solar panels that can produce gas for you. Not today, and hopefully never. That would be weird.
How Many Kilowatts Have You Used in a Year?
That graph is showing you exactly how many kilowatt-hours you use. That’s the first thing we’re trying to figure out is how many kilowatt-hours you’ve used over the last year. I’m going to assume in this example, you’ve lived in your home at least a year.
If you’re just moving in or you just moved in three months ago, you can do some estimating. We don’t know yet how many panels you would need over a year to cover you, but there are ways we can do that. That’s not a problem.
We’re going to pretend you’ve lived there for a year, though. That graph is vital.
What I would do is just round up the kilowatt-hours. We don’t need to be exact right now. This is just for this example. Look at your bill, write down the number of kilowatt-hours you use, round up, and write that down.
I’m going to give you an example and walk you through the math. You’ll just have to change it for your actual numbers.
Fun fact: The average home uses 909 kilowatt-hours per month.
Let’s Do The Math…
I’m going to round up and just say 1000 kilowatt-hours per month is the average amount being used in this example. That’s easy math, right?
Over the year, that equals 12,000 kilowatt-hours. That’s 1,000 times twelve months equaling 12,000 kilowatt-hours over the past year.
But what does that mean? How do you know how many panels you need?
Panels produce differently, and it also depends on the type of panels you get. You can go to an expert like our team to figure that all out. We’re just doing simple math right now.
The average panel is going to produce 44 kilowatt-hours per month.
Take the rounded-up total number of kilowatt-hours you use in a month and divide that by 44.
In our example, it’s a thousand kilowatt-hours a month that you need to power a two-thousand square foot home.
If we divide that number by 44 kilowatt-hours, that gives us 22.72 panels. That’s how many you need.
Your bill is the indicator.
Unfortunately, you can’t cut a panel off. The solar panels don’t have little break off Lego pieces.
You’ve got to round up, and you’ll just have a little extra power for the month.
So, you’ll need 23 panels for about a two-thousand square foot home.
If you have a four thousand square foot home, instead of 23 panels, you would need 46 panels.
Truthfully though, you really need somebody to design that for you. You need somebody to do a walkthrough. I’m not saying you need us or anyone else, but you do need to walk through and get the exact number off of your bill.
Your bill is the indicator, not me just giving you general math. This is just giving you an idea.
There's No Obligation
Here’s what’s cool. Our team will actually help you figure all of this out and get exact numbers for you. If this sounds like a sales pitch, it isn’t because what I’m about to tell you is absolutely free.
Text the word “BILL” to (619) 304-0123.
You can text us anytime at that number, but in this case, if you text that word, you’ll get a quick response. We’ll ask for your email, and then you’ll be able to email the bill to us or take a picture and text it to us. From there, we’ll go ahead and set up exactly how many panels you would need to replace all the kilowatt-hours you use in a year.
We’ll get you the exact design plan. We’ll even shoot over a neat little design of your roof, showing you what it would look like with that many panels on your roof and also suggest where they will go.
That’s free. There’s no obligation.
We'll Do That For You...
If you are wondering, “How many solar panels do I need,” your next question will probably be, “What does that look like? Do I have enough roof space for that? Where do I put it?”
We’ll do that for you!
Of course, the next question after that is always going to be how much does that cost? We can discuss that later but let us help you. We’re here to help.
It’s not about how many panels you need, it’s about how much energy you use, and that is measured in kilowatt-hours.
Once we figure out how many solar panels you need, then we can discuss how to finance it and actually get those panels up and running.