Can Solar Panels Power a Whole House: Are They Smart?

Homeowners considering solar panels often wonder “can solar panels power a whole house”? Today, modern solar panel systems are indeed powerful enough to provide electric for an entire house. Using only solar energy, many homes are opting to convert to solar panels thanks to their many benefits.

In this brief overview, we’ll explore modern advancements in solar panels and their ability to effectively power an entire house. After reading, you’ll have everything you need to know to answer your burning questions about powering a house using only solar panels.

Although solar panels have been around for quite some time, they’ve recently gained even more popularity in the last decade. As technology advances and prices came down, more and more homeowners are beginning to see the many benefits in using solar panels to power their home. In addition, many local and federal government incentives (such as tax credits and rebates) have incentivized homeowners to switch to solar panels. 

solar panels on roof with sun rising in the background

Cost Effectiveness of Solar Panels

Homeowners wondering “can solar panels power a whole house”? often also question the cost effectiveness of solar panels. To determine the cost effectiveness of solar panels, you’ll first need to determine your home’s energy needs. You’ll need to know how much energy, on average, your home uses per month.

Using the average energy usage, SunTalk solar can help you to calculate how much power your solar panels will need to generate in order the power your entire house. While the average energy needs are considered, energy bills are likely to fluctuate throughout the year. You can checkout our solar estimator here.

Consider the Climate In And Around Your Home

The climate of your home is another important consideration when it comes to solar panels. Homes in colder and cloudier areas may not have enough sunlight in order to power a whole house. If you don’t see direct sunlight for weeks on end, this could pose a problem.

You’ll also want to take a look at the number of trees surrounding your property. Tall trees that produce large shady areas may block the sunlight’s ability to reach your solar panels.

Two people holding a solar panel on it's side while installing it on the roof.

Direct Sunlight Needs

The number of hours of direct sunlight your home receives each day is an important consideration. Making an estimate of the average number of daylight hours of direct sunlight your house gets can be useful in determining your needs for solar panels.

Fortunately our beautiful state, Colorado, is an excellent place for solar panels! Residents of the Centennial State enjoy several sunny days per year that are well above the national average.

Residential solar panels in Colorado can often overproduce the power needed for many homes during the long summer days. However, when days are shorter in winter, the panels may be blanketed with snow and produce less power. In this way, the electricity production can balance out annually producing an amount that enables you to run your whole house on solar energy alone! If you are curious about maintaining your solar panels and clearing off that snow, checkout this article.

What’s Your Home’s Monthly Energy Consumption Rate?

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, “in 2019, the average annual electricity consumption for a U.S. residential utility customer was 10,649 kilowatt-hours (kWh), an average of about 877 kWh per month.”

For simplicity’s sake, let’s round that number up to 900 kWh per month. And let’s assume that this number applies to most residential properties in the United States. If we divide 900 by 30, we can determine that most homes consume 30 kWh per day or 1.25 kWh per hour.

That being said, it’s important to remember that this number does vary depending on the size of your home and the amount of household energy consumption. You may be able to find your home’s specific energy consumption rate listed on your monthly electricity bill. Be sure to check that out before making your own calculations.

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The crew did a terrific job on the installation at my house. Their attention to detail was very evident and much appreciated. The system looks great.
Matt M
Your team was very good at making sure I understood the system and was consistent about leaving the yard spot free of debris. Great job and they deserve kudos on a job well done!
Stacy D.
Just wanted to pass along the kind words from Anni I. She was raving about the crew and said they were absolutely amazing, and she wants to bring you all cookies :) She is so happy with her installation.
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