Solar panel technology has allowed the world’s population to slowly turn away from non-renewable energy by powering their homes with renewable solar energy. Every one of us on this planet has free access to solar energy, so why wouldn’t we want to harness its full potential?
It’s not only an environmentally friendly solution to traditional energy sources, but it will undoubtedly help you save a lot of money in the long run.
However, it’s not a good idea to buy the first-panel system you come across because there are limitations associated with certain panels that you don’t want to deal with.
Fortunately for you, we cover everything you need to know about these smaller 4kW systems and their production efficiencies in this article. By the end of the article, you’ll be a master of a 4kW system that you will be able to determine what a 5kW solar system can run.
Electricity Production of a 4kW Solar System
Starting with a 4kW system is ideal, as it provides your home with sufficient electricity, and you won’t have to break the bank during the purchase. A common question solar newbies have around these 4kW systems is how much electricity it produces.
There’s no straightforward answer to how much electricity a 4kW solar system can produce, as the electricity output is dependent on a few very important variables.
The first variable that affects electricity production is the angle of your roof. To maximize production your panel should be angled directly towards the sun at a slight angle on a south-facing roof. Roof surfaces facing away from the sun will decrease efficiency, ultimately decreasing the electricity output.
The second most important variable is the amount of sunlight your area neighborhood receives over 24 hours. In sunny areas, you can expect a 30% increase in yearly electricity when compared to areas that are well-shaded with lots of cloud cover.
If you stay in a sunny area and have a south-facing roof, then your 4kW solar panel system can roughly produce 19kWh (kilowatt hours) in a day, 590kWh in a month, and a whopping 7,000kWh in a year. That is impressive for this small solar power system. In comparison to how much an 8kW solar system produces, a 4kW system produces half as much power.
In areas that don’t have long periods of sun exposure, your solar panel system could produce approximately 11kWh in a day. However, this is still powerful for a standard 4kW solar system.
The average US household uses roughly 10,800kWh annually. That being said, a 4kW system cannot completely cover your annual energy usage, but it significantly reduces your reliance on traditional energy sources.
If you’re in the market for a solar system but need further assistance on which system is suitable for your home location, then you should visit Shop Solar Kits for help. We can help you decide on an ideal setup, or you have the option of choosing one of our custom solar kits.
How Many Solar Panels for a 4kW System
The majority of residential solar panels are 265 watts, which strikes a good balance between cost and efficiency.
The higher-end solar panels have wattages that range between 300 and 400 watts. These panels cost more money, but you require fewer of them to reach the same electrical output.
Homeowners typically opt for 240-watt solar panels because they are affordable and perfectly meet their energy needs.
If you want the more affordable 240-watt solar panel option, then you’ll need at least 17 panels for your 4kW system. All you need to do to work this out is take the total desired voltage of your solar system, in our case, it’s 4,000 watts, and divide it by the wattage of individual panels. This would be 240 watts for our setup.
The final equation is as follows:
4,000 watts/240 watts = 16,67 (which we round up to 17 panels).
If you want the higher-end panels which have an individual wattage of 400 watts each, then you’re looking at 10 panels in total.
You can use the same equation to work out how much power a 3kW system produces and the number of solar panels you will need.
How Much Roof Space Do I Need
Installing the lower efficiency panels to your roof is the best financial option, especially if you aren’t limited by space.
If money isn’t the issue, then you can instead opt for the higher-end panels. However, a 4kW solar system is relatively small, and the majority of residential homes have enough roof space to accommodate it.
To put it into perspective, the average dimensions of your standard solar panels are about 5 feet tall and 3 feet wide. This gives you a total area of 15 square feet for one panel.
With this area in mind, you need approximately 255 square feet for standard panel installation. For the higher-end panel system, you would need 170 square feet of space available for installation.
Remember, your roof should be able to accommodate a 4kW system with standard solar panels. However, if you have an incredibly small roof or stay in a cabin then the higher-end option is more beneficial.
How Much Does a 4kW System Cost
Solar panel cost is calculated by the cost per watt. In 2016 the average cost of a single watt was $3. These days, the average cost for a watt is $2.77.
Using the new rates, a brand new 4kW system will cost you about $11,080. However, if you have a solar panel installed, you are eligible for a 26% federal tax credit discount, which brings the total cost down to approximately $8,200.
This isn’t all, you can earn money back through government incentives, tax rebates, and credits, making the overall cost cheaper in the long run.
The costs of 4kW systems fluctuate depending on the area you live. For example, in Arizona, the cost of a 4kW solar panel system could cost you between $8,200 and $10,400, while in Colorado it would cost between $11,300 and $13,800.
You might want to know how much a 6kW solar system costs, and you can find out by using the $2.77 multiplied by the 6000 watts.
Installing a solar panel in your home is a huge financial investment, but it will start paying itself off the moment it is installed. Starting with a 4kW solar panel system is great for beginners breaking into the solar scene.
You will still reap all its glorious benefits and you are guaranteed to produce your clean energy without relying too heavily on traditional energy production. Over time you can upgrade your existing system with big energy capacities and more panels, which will save you even more money in the long run.
By now you should be able to determine how much 10kW solar systems or larger can produce by applying what you learned.
If you have any concerns about maintenance or installation, then feel free to contact Shop Solar Kits. We have all the experience and expertise to assist you with any queries you might have.
The time to go solar is now. You will be thanking yourself for making the sustainable switch.
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