how solar works

What is a Solar System?

Solar systems or Photovoltaic Power Systems utilize the an array of photovoltaic cells, also known as solar cells, to generate power. Photovoltaic systems convert light energy from the sun into direct current (DC) electricity.  They are constructed mostly of silicon.

A general rule of thumb is – the larger the array the most electricity that can be generated.  Basic photovoltaic solar systems use a single interface to create an electric field throughout the solar cells. Systems that use multiple interfaces, or what is commonly known as “multi-junction” cells can help convert more of the energy spectrum into electricity. The bigger your system the more money you can potentially save.

Want to see how they are made?

When most of think of solar systems we only generally consider the components on the roof top, however, a solar system is comprised of three components:

  • Inverter: Solar systems generate DC power which needs to be converted to AC power to be used effectively in your home. Want to learn more about inverters? 
  • Batteries: Although optional, batteries provide an added measure of security in areas where blackouts and grid reliability is unstable.
  • Additional Systems: An array requires wiring, mounting and multiple hardware components that are used to attach the system to your roof.

There are also several considerations when going Solar. One of the most overlooked areas in exposure duration and intensity. Areas that receive high amounts of sunlight exposure are ideal candidates for solar energy.

Maximum Sunlight

Typically solar panels are installed on the top of structures. This is done to increase the amount of direct sunlight the panels are exposed to. The position of your system is extremely important. A good solar installer will survey your area and also test which location and angle of your roof will bring you the maximum amount of sunlight.  As technology like solar forecasting increases in the future this will only get better.

Sunlight Obstructions

One of the biggest obstructions in most cities in Ontario are trees. You might think that only trees directly beside your house will cause obstructions but even nearby structures or trees can cast a shadow over your photovoltaic panels.  If you want to maintain a higher operating efficiency it’s important to examine the surrounding area and make sure no shadows are being cast.

Solar energy finally allows residential and commercial consumers to become energy producers instead of consumers.  As the costs of energy rise throughout Canada, solar technology has been gaining popularity.  As battery technology increases more houses in Ontario will eventually turn to solar energy to provide their residential needs.

Thanks to government support, lower solar costs and increased financing options solar energy is an affordable option for many residents of Ontario.

If you are interested in finding out how much a solar system can help you to save money then start by getting a free estimate.


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