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Old 11-02-2012, 12:41 PM   #1
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how does heat effect solar panels ?

I'm researching solar panels pros and cons and problems. trying to not make to many mistakes. one thing i've just read as a note, is solar panels over heating ????? so my question to you brainyacts out there. what effect does the heat of the day have on the panels ? lower output ? if so % loss ? if heat is a great problem what would be an adequate air space under the panels , verses to much (wind will try to lift them off on hyw.) ???? and if heat is a problem, is being to cold a problem also ????
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:49 PM   #2
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The solar panels on my home are affected a lot by the temperature. My system is designed to output not quite 4 KW. When we have full sun and 90 plus temps, I get about 2.9 KW max. When we have full sun and temps in the 70's, I get about 3.8 KW.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:54 PM   #3
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Yes there is a degradation in out put when hot and yes they work better when cold how much depends on the type/construction/mounting of the panel. As I said they work better when cold and that is not a problem unless they exceed the voltage capacity of the controller.
Yes mounts are a factor in cooling. I used ABS mounts I imported from China that are some what more aerodynamic and have enough contact area that I was able to use 3M VHB tape with no screws, they have withstood combined wind and speed in excess of 110 MPH (40+ mph head wind 60+ mph speed
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Old 11-02-2012, 01:13 PM   #4
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they have withstood combined wind and speed in excess of 110 MPH (40+ mph head wind 60+ mph speed[/QUOTE]

That's only 100 mph Someone hadda say it.

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Old 11-02-2012, 01:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wonderer1 View Post
I'm researching solar panels pros and cons and problems. trying to not make to many mistakes. one thing i've just read as a note, is solar panels over heating ????? so my question to you brainyacts out there. what effect does the heat of the day have on the panels ? lower output ? if so % loss ? if heat is a great problem what would be an adequate air space under the panels , verses to much (wind will try to lift them off on hyw.) ???? and if heat is a problem, is being to cold a problem also ????
Yes heat does affect the output of solar panels and can be as much as a 60% loss.
Thats one of the factors that most do not allow for when sizing the solar array. That is one of the reasons a 1 to 1 ratio is recommened. 100 watts of output for each 100 AH of storage capacity.
I believe this loss of output is not realized by many and they become dissapointed in the performanc of their system.
anyone interested in researching it can do so by doing a websearch for
" How does temperature affect solar panels". Plenty of reading on the subject.
There is not much one can do other than allow for air to circulate under the panel and about an inch is sufficient. The frame and glass heat up and that is transferred to the cells.

Conversly lower temperatures, higher output.
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Old 11-02-2012, 01:53 PM   #6
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Line drawing of what you wish out of your system. Review where you travel. Look at battery space needed. Temps always affect. Most efficiency is cheaper over time. Cloudy day and the efficiency is a benefit. Hard wire the biggest wires from roof to solar controls. BIG wires to batterys. As many 6Vbatteries as you can afford, weight wise and Dollar wise. Just a few thoughts.
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:32 PM   #7
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If the power from solar is being used as it is produced, than heat is a problem. However, in an RV environment, and if properly sized, the lesser output due to heat is a non event because most users have their batteries to the full stage prior to noon, so less is more than enough because the controller is limiting the output anyway.

Solar panels being utilized in the antarctic put out more watts than the rated maximum.


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Old 11-03-2012, 12:43 PM   #8
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I don't worry about temps I just camp and always conserve. I mounted mine about 1 1/2" above the roof so I could clean debris out from under them. I ended up putting a little air deflector on the one that's in front as it made a howling noise that bugged me . I've traveled in some pretty hard wind on our So Cal deserts and never had a problem in almost 10 years since I mounted them. (3).
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Old 11-03-2012, 01:41 PM   #9
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TdogKing ----do you have a picture of the air deflector you made. hadn't thought about noise. you're the only one that's brought that up. thanks
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Old 11-04-2012, 10:34 PM   #10
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This is my air deflector that I used roof sealer to mount in front of my solar panel, its not much but it did stop the howling sound. It sounded like when you blow across the top of a big soda bottle.
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