What Does the End of Daylight Saving Time Mean for Solar?
Daylight saving time is the part of the year where solar power really gets to shine. Long, sunny days mean plenty of opportunities to generate energy for your home.
However, as daylight saving time comes to a close, you may be concerned that your solar power capability will be affected. Will shorter daylight hours translate into less energy for your home? Will you need to rely more on the grid in the winter and early spring?
The good news is: Solar power can withstand the switch to standard time just fine! With a few adjustments, you will be able to weather the winter with plenty of power.
Here are answers to 6 of the most common questions we get about what rolling back the clock means for a solar energy system:
1. Should I Install a Battery?
Whether you are considering solar or you already have a system in place, a battery backup can assuage any fears you have about generating energy when sunlight is less plentiful.
Batteries work in tandem with solar panels. When you don’t consume all of the power your system produces during the day, the battery stores the surplus for later use. So, if you have leftover energy when the sun goes down, the battery will continue powering your home without you having to take energy from the grid.
Storage batteries can be installed as part of your solar power system, or you can add them at a later date. It is generally best to contact an experienced solar professional to help you set up the battery so it is safely and correctly connected to your home system.
2. Do I Need to Trim My Trees?
Shade is built into the initial solar model. We do not encourage cutting down or even trimming trees to increase sunlight onto panels.
We do ask that you don’t plant new trees in front of solar arrays. If you do plant new trees, plant them on the east and west sides of your home instead of the south.
3. How Should I Monitor My Energy Usage?
One of the joys of having a solar energy system is being able to see the savings in real time. Modern solar panels include software that delivers data on energy generation and usage right to your smartphone or home computer, enabling you to see your times of peak usage, when the system generates the most power, and more.
These insights enable you to save energy throughout the year. When the days are shorter, however, it is even more important to know your peak hours for energy consumption.
If you primarily consume energy during the (new) daylight hours, you will likely see minimal impact in your energy usage or electricity bills once daylight saving time ends. However, if you see that you use more energy in the evening and at night, you may want to rethink your home energy habits so you won’t have to draw from the grid or use up surplus power from your storage battery.
4. Will I Need to Reposition My Solar Panels?
We ask that all clients leave their panels in place for the lifetime of the system. If you re-roof your house, only certified professionals should remove solar panels.
5. Do I Need to Plan Ahead If the Forecast Calls for Snow?
Although standard time comes with shorter days, this also means that the sun is out earlier than it is during daylight saving time. If you can adjust your energy usage to earlier in the day, you should still see savings on your electric bill.
The switch to standard time does, however, come with changes that are more difficult to predict: winter weather. Whether it’s snowfall, an overcast day, or another weather event, it is important to know what Mother Nature is bringing so you can be prepared for potential interruptions to your solar power output.
The good news is that Colorado weather changes on a dime. A snowstorm can give way to a bright, sunny day in hours. So, while it is important to check the forecast for your area, don’t get too worried about how winter weather will impact your home’s power supply overall.
6. Should I Remove Snow and Ice?
“A”-rated solar panels do not require maintenance. Of course, getting the snow off a day early will earn you another day of production, but it is not worth getting on a snowy roof.
Contact Our Solar Energy Experts Today
If you are interested in saving money and helping the planet – yes, even during the winter months – then you need an experienced company to help you make the switch to solar and enjoy the full benefits of renewable energy for your home. At REenergizeCO, our solar team treats your home with respect and handles all aspects of solar panel installation, optimization, and wiring for you.
We offer multiple $0 down flexible financing options.
To get started with solar, please contact REenergizeCO today to get started with your comprehensive home energy audit. We serve customers in Denver, Fort Collins, and throughout the Front Range.