Solar panels are easily one of the largest sectors of all renewable energy on the market today to be aware of. Since the technology was first invented, there have been advancements almost faster than imaginable. There are multiple different types of panels out there, and there’s a lot to learn when it comes to setting up your own system.
One of the most important things to understand before installing solar panels is knowing about the solar panel size. This includes the dimensions, size charts, and other key considerations for size selection.
In this article, we try and all of the aspects of solar panels to help guide you towards a clearer understanding of solar panel size. Ultimately, we hope that you’ll be able to purchase your own system and set it up to join the clean and renewable green energy movement taking over the world today.
What is Solar Panel Size?
Different solar panels will have different dimensions that need to be looked at when designing your system for a specific setup. While all solar panels do the same thing, harness the power of the sun and convert it into usable, storable electric power, not all of them are working at the same speed or operate from a piece of equipment the same size.
Different environments, projects, and systems will influence the overall size of the solar panels that are created for that job. A solar panel that’s far too large won’t be able to be brought along on a weekend outing. It will weigh far more than anyone wants to move frequently.
Applications like solar power for home electricity use will benefit from these larger panels that can gather a huge amount of power, but will never need to be moved from a fixed location.
But, with today’s advancements in solar technology, you have the option to pack a panel into a backpack and gather power anywhere you go. These smaller, more compact panels are absolutely perfect for travelers that want to go backpacking deep into the woods, but still want a source of power for all their gadgets.
Overall, the size of a solar panel can be figured out by knowing its use, otherwise the size will determine what it can be used for.
What is the Standard Solar Panel Size?
You can look at different solar panel sizes by looking at the width, length, depth, and number of solar cells. The higher the number of solar cells, the more power being created. The more cells also require more space, increasing the length, width, and depth of the panel.
Depending on the type of panel and who made it, the average solar panel size will change. While this number fluctuates, the standard solar panel size is typically between 36 and 42 inches in length, and 63 and 77 inches in width.
The smaller standard panels will be those that are found in residential applications, like on top of someone’s home or nearby in a solar field.
The larger panels are best for providing a massive amount of energy to huge industrial business buildings or warehouse manufacturers. It seems like common sense, and it’s right, that the large panels will produce a higher capacity of solar energy for you to use.
Different Types of Solar Panel Size
Most solar panels can be categorized into standard, large, and custom sizes. Understanding these three sizes can be an easy step toward getting the right size panel for the job you hope to use it for.
A standard panel are those that you will see in a residential application. Typically, these are around 39 inches wide and 65 inches long. This houses, on average, 60 solar cells. Those 60 cells produce a large amount of energy, and when paired with other panels, you can easily run an entire house from solar power.
A standard sized solar panel is perfect for those that want to fit as much power onto a single surface when possible. The size will easily allow for you to cover your home’s roof without adding too much weight or taking up more space than necessary.
The large solar panels are those that you would see in a large solar farm or on a huge corporate office or business. These range closer to the 42 inches by 63 inches side of the spectrum. While these larger panels provide a ton of energy, there is also much more that can go wrong with a much larger surface area. The larger surface area makes a single panel more prone to damages and requires a huge amount of maintenance all year long.
While these two categories definitely won’t cover every need, there are panels small enough to fit in your backpack and panels that can be thrown into the trunk of your car for your next camping trip with friends.
A custom solar panel is the perfect fit for your needs, as it is designed, shaped, and sized according to your needs. You can often work with solar providers to create custom measurements.
Standard Solar Panel Sizing
Factors Influencing Solar Panel Size Selection
When you’re choosing the right solar panel size, there are a few main factors that you need to take into consideration in the process. These are the main three factors that should influence your solar panel size collection, but the factors are certainly not limited to these three listed here.
Each home and user has different energy needs, so it’s important to take the time to get yours right, rather than making a decision without much information behind it.
Solar Panel Wattage
Different panels will have a different wattage capacity. Growatt’s 200W solar panel measures in at 92” by 21.2” when unfolded and set out to capture the sun. This size weighs in at 7kg, which is sufficient to move around and use for multiple applications.
The benefit of a solar panel that is sized in this manner is that it can be folded down to be more compact and portable, but when opened, there is still a higher solar panel wattage available.
The smaller 100W solar panel that Growatt has to offer measures in at 46” by 21.2”. This delivers half the power for half the size. It can also be folded down easily, taking up significantly less space than most standard solar panels on the market.
Solar Panel Type
The kind of solar panel that you’re looking for will greatly influence the size that you want to end up with. As mentioned before, the solar panels that are designed for residential use will typically be smaller, while those produced by Growatt are designed to be used for multiple applications and can be folded to take up less space.
These portable panels are great for anyone that wants to harness a huge amount of energy but doesn’t have the space to store or install them permanently.
Larger operations require a larger type of solar panel, which can give you quite a lot of information as far as choosing the size that you need.
Your Output Needed
If you’re looking to run your entire home or power a small camper, the size you require will vary. If you have less sunlight, you also may need a higher output solar panel, meaning having to choose the larger panels.
To get more power in a shorter period of time, you are combining different panels to increase the overall wattage that you get from the panels you are using. In general, knowing how much output you need will be the number one most influential determining factor for picking the right set of solar panels.
How Much Do Solar Panels Weigh and Are They too Heavy for a Roof?
You’ll often see houses with solar panels lining their roofs, but it can bring up the question of how much they weigh, and how many panels a roof can hold.
In general, roofs are built to hold a huge amount of weight. They need to be built this way in order to survive long winters with immense weights from snowfall, or to bear the burden of a fallen tree if that ever happens.
Solar panels are surprisingly light for the work that they do, but can still add a significant strain to your roof. A 200W panel from Growatt that you may have connected to an INFINITY 1500 inside, weighs in at 7 kilograms, or 15.4 pounds. The average roof can hold around 20 pounds per square foot.
Thinking about that, the size of a solar panel and the overall weight that it is adding to your roof will not be too much to handle. You can easily load your roof with panels and not worry about them being too heavy for the roof, so long as the roof is properly built and in good condition.
It’s in your best interest to consult with an expert before throwing a large number of solar panels on the roof. There could be structural damages that you are unaware of that a professional could easily identify. They will help you determine exactly how many panels your roof can safely hold and may even help you install them.
How big is a 400W solar panel?
A 400W solar panel will vary in size depending on the material it’s made from, while on average, 400W solar are 22.75 square feet (6.5” by 3.5”).
How much does a 300 watt solar panel weigh?
A 300W solar panel typically weighs in around 40 pounds.
What size of solar panels do I need?
Depending on your use, you may need a standard size solar panel, but likely you won’t need anything larger. That is, unless you are running a business and hoping to switch over to solar on a much larger scale.
Choosing the right solar panel size by determining the output you need, the type of solar panel you want, and the wattage you are looking for will be the best route to getting exactly what you need. There are so many different sizes of panels out there that it can be overwhelming at first.
Taking the time to do your research and identify what exactly you want these panels for will help you get the perfect choice for exactly what you need solar for. No matter what, you can never go wrong with getting a bit too large of a panel and having too much power than you know how to use. Pairing larger panels with a quality portable power station will only make you more prepared for any emergency that can come your way.
Choosing the right panel size will lead to the optimal level of energy collection, leading you straight toward a life of clean, green, renewable energy at home or on the go.