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Solar Panels

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Solar power has risen in recent years, especially in Australia. Fueled by the continuous increase in energy prices, more households have switched to alternative and sustainable solar energy. Solar panels can be seen in most homes nowadays, sometimes even paired with solar batteries for better efficiency.

Let's address a common question among first-time solar users: how solar panels work? They convert sunlight into electricity through a process called the photovoltaic effect.

When sunlight hits the solar panels, its solar cells excite the electrons in the silicon atoms, causing them to become energised. This creates an electric field across the layers of the solar cell.

The energised electrons flow through the electric field, creating an electric current. This current is then captured by metal contacts on the solar cell, generating usable electricity. However, this electricity is in direct current (DC) form, the same type produced by batteries.

To use this, you need an inverter to convert the energy into an alternating current (AC) form, which most home appliances use. This AC electricity can either power your electronics, be stored in solar batteries for later use, or be fed into the electricity grid. If it's connected to the grid, excess electricity can be sold back to the utility company, often through a process called net metering.

This is also the same process for solar panels installed in RVs or even portable solar panels taken on outdoor adventures such as camping and caravanning. Given its many benefits, such as reducing costs and carbon footprint, solar energy has gradually become a staple in everyday life.

What Are The Types Of Solar Panels?

Before searching for the best solar panels panels in Australia, it's crucial to understand how solar panels work and their types. This way, you can choose which best fits your power needs and get the most out of your purchase. Below are the common types of solar panels you will encounter in physical and online stores:

Fixed Solar Panel

Fixed solar panels, also known as stationary solar panels, are the most commonly seen mounted on roofs. They are the most common type of solar panel installation for residential and commercial purposes due to their simplicity and cost-effectiveness.

Fixed solar panels have a fixed tilt angle, which means they may only sometimes be positioned optimally to capture the maximum amount of sunlight throughout the day. As a result, their efficiency may vary depending on factors such as the time of day, season, and local weather conditions.

Folding Solar Panel

Folding solar panels, called solar mats or blankets, are designed for portability. Because of their space-saving, lightweight build, they are often used as camping solar panels.

A high-quality folding solar panel should withstand outdoor conditions and be equipped with a built-in charge controller and output ports, making them easy to use without additional equipment.

Flexible Solar Panel

Flexible solar panels stand out because they can conform to curved surfaces or be integrated into flexible applications. This flexibility makes them versatile and suitable for applications where rigid solar panels cannot be used.

Despite their thin and flexible construction, flexible solar panels are durable and resistant to impact, bending, and vibration. Overall, they make a great alternative to traditional grid solar panels for setups where ease of installation and space are important factors.

Solar Kits

As the name suggests, solar kits include solar panels in a set, mounting accessories, a regulator, or sometimes even a battery.

The inclusions in these kits depend on the provider, but the great thing about buying a whole set is that it saves you time. Instead of purchasing the items separately and searching for compatible equipment, you can get everything in one purchase.

In terms of materials, solar panels can be categorised into three main groups:

Monocrystalline

Monocrystalline solar panels boast the highest efficiency among other panel types, though at a higher price point. Despite the initial investment, it's highly recommended for maximising output.

Polycrystalline

While less efficient, polycrystalline solar panels are more budget-friendly, making them appealing to many consumers.

Thin-film

If easy installation is your priority, thin-film solar panels are ideal. They are lightweight and offer greater flexibility, although their power output is lower compared to the first two types of panels.

Are Solar Panels Worth It?

Solar panel costs vary depending on the type and the number of panels you want to install. Regardless, they are generally considered a worthwhile investment, especially in Australia. In fact, by the third quarter of 2023, Australia had accumulated a total rooftop solar capacity of 21.2 gigawatts (GW). This tally encompasses over 68,000 fresh solar installations integrated into the grid during that quarter, augmenting the overall installed capacity by 620 megawatts (MW).

If you're considering switching to solar power, proper planning is the best thing to start with. You don't just decide to go solar overnight. Factors to consider include budget, location, sunlight exposure, available space, and solar panel installation. To ensure you're headed on the right path, reach out to experts and reputable providers who can help you make decisions allowing you to maximise the solar energy available.

Still unsure whether to go solar? Check out the top benefits, and you might just be convinced to shop for solar panels soon!

Lower electricity bills

It's no secret millions of households now rely on solar power systems to reduce their monthly electricity bills. Imagine what it would do to your energy costs if you lessen your reliance on your grid system!

Many solar panel systems are also paired with solar batteries for higher efficiency. A solar home battery serves as storage for the solar energy generated by your panels. This way, you still have energy to use even on a cloudy day when your solar panels may not be able to generate that much output.

Reduced carbon footprint

Solar panels reduce their carbon footprint by generating electricity from sunlight instead of fossil fuels, thus avoiding greenhouse gas emissions. Their reliance on renewable solar energy decreases the demand for coal, oil, and natural gas, significantly contributing to carbon emissions.

When combined with energy storage systems and energy-efficient technologies, solar panels can contribute to achieving net-zero or harmful emissions. Overall, they play a crucial role in mitigating climate change by promoting renewable energy adoption and reducing the environmental impact of electricity generation.

Clean, renewable energy

Solar power is a renewable energy source that will never run out. This is particularly important if you rely on portable solar panels for a camping trip or a complete set for your off-grid home.

As long as the sun is shining, there are no worries here. However, to be 100% sure you'll have electricity, pair your solar panels with solar batteries for reliable energy storage.

Protection from energy price hikes

In 2023, numerous Australian households experienced substantial rises in their electricity bills, with rates surging by approximately 20% to 25% nationwide.

For homeowners worried about escalating costs, rooftop solar energy presents a remedy. By enabling individuals to produce electricity, solar power diminishes reliance on the grid and serves as a shield against prospective rate hikes.

Easy maintenance

While solar power installation requires time and extra fees, it's relatively easy to maintain solar panels once they're mounted. Most of the time, regular inspection and cleaning are enough to keep them in excellent condition, and their longevity is impressive.

Fast payback, long service life

Solar panels have an average lifetime of 20-25 years. Aside from being a fantastic long-term investment, the payback is fast, provided you have installed them correctly. This is why, as mentioned earlier, it takes a lot of planning before purchasing.

Solar Incentives

The Australian government has been actively encouraging the uptake of solar energy through diverse incentive programs and rebates. These efforts aim to enhance the affordability of solar panel installation for homeowners.

Homeowners can markedly reduce the initial expenses associated with solar power installation using these solar rebate initiatives.

Technological advancements

The solar energy sector is continuously evolving. At present, solar panels are significantly more efficient and durable. There are even bifacial panels now that enhance the overall performance of PV systems, making them a better long-term investment.

Moreover, Australia generally has favourable conditions for solar power use. Of all the continents, it has the highest solar radiation per square metre and one of the best solar potentials globally.

How Many Solar Panels Do You Need to Run a House?

To power your house using solar panels, you must first know your daily kilowatt-hours consumption. A household consumes about 10kWh of electricity daily, but this will vary for each home. The easiest way to get an idea of your average consumption is through your previous energy bills, and once you have an estimate, you can go to the next step: determining your location's peak sun hours.

Knowing how much sun exposure your location gets is crucial as it can impact your solar panels' efficiency. Peak sun hours are any hour of the day when the sunlight's intensity is at an average of 1000W per square meter. There are online tools to help you get this before choosing your solar panel rate.

Solar panel ratings usually range from 200W to 450W. If you have limited roof space, consider getting a higher power rating to use fewer panels.

To calculate how many solar panels it takes to power a house, this is the equation to use:

Daily energy consumption/peak sun hours/solar panel wattage

Let's add some values for a clearer computation. If you have 25kWh of daily energy consumption, 5 hours of peak sun exposure, and would like a 400W solar panel, the computation would be:

25,000Wh / 5 peak sun hours / 400W = 12.5 solar panels

To effectively power your whole house and offset electricity costs by 100%, you'd need about 13 solar panels.

How Much Does It Cost to Install Solar Panels?

Solar power installation can vary in price. Solar panel prices alone can vary in terms of output and material. Overall, installation fees depend highly on panel quality, consumption, the number of panels needed, location, and additional components.

In Australia, installation costs average between $2,900 and $14,100. A basic 2kW system can cost around $2,800 - $5,600, while a large-scale 10kW setup can range from $7,600-$14,000.

Remember that a total solar setup with solar batteries, a solar charge controller, and an inverter could incur more costs. However, while it can be pricey to go solar initially, it has been proven to reduce monthly bills, which will help you pay back the initial cost.

Solar rebates and incentives are also available in every location, which can help you save more annually.

Why Choose Outbax?

Outbax is a reliable and customer-focused company that provides all your outdoor power needs. They offer a comprehensive range of high-quality solar panels that allow you to get the most out of the solar energy available, whether camping, at home, or travelling in your RV.

At Outbax, we are committed to participating in the global push towards sustainable, green energy. Our range of solar power components offers top-notch performance and is built using only the highest-quality materials for utmost efficiency.

Switch to solar energy today and check out some of Australia's best monocrystalline solar panels. With an efficiency rate of up to 23.5%, these can power your essentials indoors or outdoors. Our panels are also manufactured using advanced PERC technology, allowing better sunlight absorption even in low-light conditions.

Need a solar battery to complement your solar panels? We have them, too! Our range of lithium batteries features premium LiFePO4 batteries made of prismatic cells, perfect for storing solar energy for later use. Backed by a built-in battery management system, these batteries are also protected from common battery issues, including overcharging, over-discharging, overheating, and short circuits.

We also have solar panel accessories, such as solar charge controllers, available here. It's a one-stop shop for anyone wanting to go solar, so shop now, refer to our solar buying guide, and start your journey to cleaner energy.

Here at Outbax, you'll also experience a wide array of service benefits. For instance, we'll process your order promptly and dispatch it within twenty-four hours. Afterwards, you can expect your package to arrive within three to twelve working days.

Plus, you can have peace of mind knowing you'll get support whenever you have burning questions about our solar panels or other products.

Reach out to our knowledgeable team through the following channels:

Address: Level 27, 1 Farrer Place, Sydney 2000, Australia

Phone: 02 888 10 333 (Monday - Friday, 9 am to 5:30 pm AEDT)

Email: info@outbax.com.au

Live Chat: Available on our website (Monday - Friday, 9 am to 5:30 pm AEDT)

WhatsApp: +02 888 10 333

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