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CompleteSolar System Kits. In house solar panel

CompleteSolar System Kits. In house solar panel

    Is My House a Good Candidate for Solar Panels?

    If you’re thinking about going solar, you’re probably wondering: Is solar cost effective? Is my roof suitable for solar panels? Will solar energy generate enough electricity to power my home? Who makes the best solar panels?

    But first, it’s important to explore if solar panels for your home make sense. Here are some key questions we ask anyone interested in buying or leasing a solar energy system to make sure their home is best suited for making power with solar panels.

    How much is your energy bill?

    Knowing how much you pay for energy is the first step in evaluating whether your house is a good candidate for solar. The main question is, will it save you money? In some areas, electricity is very inexpensive. For most homeowners, the electricity bill is a dreaded monthly expense. The general rule is that solar makes the most financial sense for someone with a monthly electricity bill of at least 75. Why? Because going solar replaces utility energy with solar energy, and we want our customers to see a return on that investment by paying less for that energy. A utility bill of 75 is the threshold at which residential solar customers will see solar savings. There are several ways to go solar, depending on a customer’s needs and goals. SunPower offers zero-down lease, loan and cash purchase options — each with different benefits. (See How to Buy Solar Panels for Your Home for more.) Ask your local solar expert about local and federal incentives and electricity policies where you live.

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    The overall idea is to pay less than you currently pay, lock in your electricity rate and save money by generating your own clean energy onsite. (Learn more about solar financing here.)

    What kind of roof do you have?

    Solar panels work best with strong, durable roofing materials, such as composite or asphalt shingle, concrete tile or standing seam metal. For roofing materials such as wood shake and slate tile, or for roofs made of clay with mortar or composite metal/stone coated steel, you can still go solar but you’d want to choose a solar professional who has experience installing solar panels on those types of roofs. Also, the type of mounting hardware your solar installer plans to use is important. SunPower Equinox™ uses InvisiMount™ hardware that is designed to work with most roof types and is visually attractive.

    Does your roof need to be replaced?

    It’s a good idea to replace a roof that is near the end of its life before installing solar because SunPower solar panels have an expected useful life of 40 years, and you wouldn’t want to unnecessarily have to remove them. Solar panels should be installed on roofs that are in good condition and will not need to be replaced in the near future. Considering that your savings from high-efficiency solar panels could pay for the cost of a re-roof in as little as five years after installation, it may be worth it to do any needed roofing work before your solar installation.

    How much sunlight does your roof receive?

    To see if your house is a good candidate for solar, try out a solar panel suitability checker such as Google’s Project Sunroof. Then set up an appointment for a solar consultation with an expert who will visit your home to inspect its orientation (solar panels facing south capture more energy), roof angle and tree shading to see if your roof will receive enough sunlight to meet your family’s energy needs. SunPower’s solar consultations are free, and you can learn a lot about your home and best energy options. The more direct sunlight your home receives, the more power the panels will produce. While SunPower solar panels are known for being extremely efficient at generating power in low-light situations, excessive shading will reduce the amount of power that can be generated.

    It’s also important to know that SunPower’s Equinox solar solution has factory integrated micro-inverters in each panel, an innovative solar design feature that means if one panel isn’t producing energy because of shade, neighboring panels that might be receiving more sunlight can still generate solar energy for your home.

    What is your local climate like?

    Solar energy can be generated in all sorts of extreme climates, from rainy areas such as Seattle, to extremely hot locations such as Los Angeles, California. Solar suitability checker tools can help you understand how this could affect solar on your house. High-efficiency solar panels convert direct and indirect sunlight into electricity, so they work even on cloudy days. A solar consultant will estimate the amount of energy your system will produce so that you can see the potential savings before you decide to go solar.

    If your area is prone to severe weather, check the durability rating of the panels you’re considering for your home. SunPower panels are rated No. 1 in third-party durability testing, which means they can withstand some of the harshest weather conditions, including hail up to 1 inch in diameter. 1 In fact, SunPower technology is so reliable that NASA chose our solar cells to power its GROVER project, which explored Greenland’s vast and inhospitable ice sheets. Solar that’s tough enough for NASA is tough enough for your roof, too.

    Think your house is a good candidate for solar? Find out how much you might save by entering your address into our solar savings calculator. Sign up for a free home solar estimate and evaluation or call us at 1-800-786-7693.

    Complete Solar System Kits

    Unbound Solar offers complete solar panel kits that include everything you need for a solar system. Browse complete solar systems and backup power kits for homes, businesses, boats and RVs, remote industrial, and more.


    Grid-tied solar systems generate electricity for your home or business and route the excess power into the electric grid for compensation from the utility company. Browse a wide range of complete grid-tied solar panel kits including the best brands.


    Wondering how much will your grid-tied solar system cost? Find out with our grid-tied solar calculator.

    Grid-Tied Battery Backup

    Grid-tied solar systems with batteries can power some essential appliances during an outage. Our grid-tied solar panel kits with battery backup included are ideal for maintaining critical appliances in areas with unreliable power.

    Backup Power


    Robust solar panel kits for remote homes and cabins. Off-Grid solar systems are ideal for remote areas, undeveloped land, and anyone without access to utility power.


    You want to go off-grid, but how many panels and batteries will you need? Find out with our off-grid calculator.

    RV Marine

    Unbound Solar‘s newly redesigned RV solar panel kits make adding a solar system to your RV easier and more affordable than ever, with a variety of options available for all vehicle sizes and energy needs.

    Remote Industrial

    Explore our Remote Industrial solar panel kits. a hassle-free solution for powering equipment remotely. Commonly used for lighting, security cameras, telemetry, environmental monitoring, and more.

    Ready to get started?

    Grid-Tied or Off-Grid?

    Which solar system type is best for you? Find the answer in our handy guide for choosing your solar panel kit.

    Custom Systems

    The home and industrial solar systems above usually work for most folks’ needs, but we wouldn’t be the DIY Solar Experts if we didn’t specialize in custom system design. Whatever your application, our techs are here to talk to you about it and design the perfect solar panel kit.

    Gary W. had no power lines nearby. The electric company told him it would cost 10,000 a pole. He chose to purchase our medium-sized system, The Homestead, one of the most popular we sell. For an investment of under 20 Grand, he now lives where he wants, he is not tethered to the power company, and he does not have to worry about blackouts or disconnection notices for late payments.

    Cyril Richardson and his family witnessed two Category 5 hurricanes in the course of two weeks. They weathered it safely, but like thousands of other Virgin Island residents, they found themselves without power and with no real hope of having it restored for months. With the help of our solar experts, Cyril settled on our popular off-grid solar panel kit, The Ranch.

    The price breakdown really surprised Tom D. He was enjoying a nice solar systems installation presentation at a kiosk at Costco when the numbers came out. Two-thirds of the overall cost was installation. Tom got online and found Unbound Solar. He didn’t have much construction experience and had no electrical experience. But after conversations with our solar experts, he felt confident to take on the project.

    Rocky considers himself an extreme DIYer. He’s never worked in construction, but he built his house, garage, and workshop. He didn’t know anything about solar systems or DC wiring/properties, but the huge cost savings inspired him to take on the challenge and learn what he needed to know. Our solar experts helped bridge the gaps in his knowledge and supported him through a successful solar panel kit install.

    Complete Solar Panel Kits

    Unbound Solar stocks and delivers a complete solar power system for homes, businesses, boats and RVs, remote industrial and unique applications to utilize solar energy. We also customize systems to fit your exact energy needs.

    Each solar panel system contains everything you need, from connectors to mounting hardware and all the essentials, and you can order a solar battery bank for backup power generated from the solar panel kit.

    You can install your solar power system as a DIY solar project or opt to hire a contractor.

    When you purchase a complete solar system from Unbound Solar, you get tailored solutions and lifelong support. We’ll help you calculate how many solar panels you need, determine the cost of your solar system and guide you when you’re ready to install the solar panels.

    Read our step-by-step guide to learn more about going solar, or reach out to us directly with questions.

    A Safe and Secure Solar Panel System

    A solar power system ensures you are equipped in the event of an outage from a natural disaster, whether you choose to ground mount or install your solar panel kits on the roof of your home. Regardless of the choice you make, you will no longer rely on the city or town grid solar system and reduce or totally eliminate your monthly electric bill.

    Even better, order a grid-tied solar panel system to sell some of that energy back to the energy company. Each home and its necessities are different, so it is important to evaluate all the options and determine what works best for you. Although it can initially seem confusing, use our guide on how to size a solar system before you order your solar panel kit.

    Every project is unique so we’re here to help you determine the right kit for you. Our knowledgeable team of techs will answer your questions and make sure you select the appropriate kit for your project. Or browse our resources, videos, and guides to help decide which solar system kit best suits your needs.

    Each kit contains all the major components you need to install a complete solar power system. Choose from a variety of solar power kits to accommodate your installation needs. Our grid-tied kits include solar panels, inverters and a racking system. The off-grid solar power kits include batteries, solar panels, a power center and your racking system. Complete kits are also available for grid-tied systems with a battery backup, RV and marine off-grid systems and remote industrial solar panel systems. Customize any kit with additional items that align with your project needs.

    Our designers are experts at building flexible systems that can grow right along with your energy needs. Solar panel kits make the perfect starting point for a project that may need more energy down the line. We customize each kit for your needs, so that your system is expandable to account for increases in energy consumption.

    How Many Solar Panels Are Needed to Run a House? (The Answer Will Surprise You!)

    Are you thinking about adding solar to your home? With over 2 million homes in the United States with solar now, many homeowners are recognizing how beneficial they are. If you’re considering having solar panels installed in your home and not sure where to start, then you’ve come to the right place.

    We’re going to go over the details of how solar panels work and how many you might need for your home.

    How Do Solar Panels Work?

    Simply put, solar panels absorb photons that then tap electrons free. Once they’re free from the atoms, it creates electricity! Solar panels take in light and directly turns it into a flow of electricity to use.

    • Solar panel cells absorb sunlight
    • They convert the light into DC power.
    • All systems need some type of inverter (string, Micro or hybrid) to convert that power to AC power.
    • The electricity is then sent through wires into your home
    • That powers everything connected to it
    • Any excess of electricity produced is then fed into the electric grid

    Solar systems are not complicated and easy to understand once you have the basics down. Now that you understand how they work, let’s take a look at how long they last –

    How Long Do Solar Panels Last?

    In short, a quality solar panel can last up to 25 years or even longer. Solar panels are designed to live a long life in the elements outside.

    Your typical solar panels come with a warranty that lasts 25 years, so you are guaranteed to reap the benefits for quite a long time.

    According to a study conducted by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, solar panels last 80% longer than their warranty.

    This can save you thousands on utility bills down the road!

    How many Solar Panels Do You Need?

    To find out how many solar panels you’ll need for your home, you need to consider everything that uses power. Taking a look at your utility bill can also give you a good idea of how many you might need.

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    How Many Watts Do You Use?

    When looking at your utility bill, you should be able to see kilowatt-hours (KWH). KWH for homes can vary greatly depending on location. A home in the south is more likely to draw massive amounts of energy from air conditioner units.

    Finding the average daily energy usage will help you calculate your solar needs. Once you have your usage you can look at how much wattage you’ll need to be able to run everything.

    Peak Sunlight Hours

    Keep in mind that solar panels only work when they are in direct sunlight. After the sun is no longer shining down on them, they aren’t producing energy. Peak sunlight hours are when your panels are in direct sunlight.

    Depending on your location, your peak sunlight hours can vary.

    Multiply your home’s hourly energy usage by the peak sunlight hours your home has and then divide that by a solar panel’s wattage. You can do this both high and low wattage panels to find a range of what you might need.

    Most reputable solar companies can also help you determine this by providing them with this basic information as well!

    Solar Panels For a 1500 Square Foot House

    The average home in the United States is roughly 1500 square feet. With a home of this size, the typical electric bill comes in around 100 month. In order to cover the electricity for this home, you would need an estimated 15-18 solar panels.

    For example, a typical fridge may be rated for 250 watts and runs for 4 hours a day. 250 watts X 4 = 1000W. A 1k watt is equal to 1 kWh of energy in a day.

    This, of course, is a general estimate and eclectic usage, sunlight hours, location, and the type of panels can change this amount.

    Types of Solar Panel Systems

    When it comes to solar panel systems, there are three different types. Gid-tied, grid-tied with battery backup, and off-grid. Let’s take a look at each one.

    Grid-Tied System

    The most popular type of system used by residential houses is the grid-tied system. This type of system is tired directly to your home and the utility grid. This allows homeowners to seamless switch between power from either the solar system or the utility system.

    If the system produces more power then the house needs, the excess power will be sold back to the utility company or it will be used to prorate your bill.

    These are generally the cheaper systems out of the three.

    Grid-Tied With Battery Backup

    Similar to the grid-tied system, this solar power system is also connected to both your house and the utility grid. However, it also comes equipped with a battery bank.

    When the panels produce electricity while in direct sun, it stores any excess power in its battery banks. This power can then be used at a later time after the sun has gone down and the panels are no longer producing power.

    The power can also be sold back to the utility companies as well – This system is much more expensive though because of the expensive price of batteries.

    Off-Grid System

    Unlike the other two, the off-grid system is not connected to the utility grid at all. This system is only connected to your home and a battery bank. The battery bank is essential in this setup in order to continue producing power for your home 24 hours a day.

    This tends to be the most expensive system because you need an excessive amount of battery in order to store the amount of energy your house will need.

    How Much Do Solar Panels Cost?

    Solar energy has become cost-effective most recently. The have gone down and they are much more available to the public. The average cost of a solar panel is almost less then half it was a decade ago.

    A typical solar panel can run between 50 cents to 70 cents per watt. At 50 cents a watt, a 350W panel would cost 175. In a typical home needing 15 solar panels, the total cost for panels would be 2,625.

    That is for the panels alone though, the cost of installation needs to be considered as well. It takes professional that know what they are doing to properly install a solar system in your home.

    How Much Does a Solar Installation Cost?

    This can vary depending on the company, but for an average installation, it can run you between 15,000 and 30,000.

    Many solar companies offer incentives and financing. There are a ton of other financial benefits that come along with installing your home:

    • Electricity rates have risen across the nation and are higher now than they have ever been
    • You can save thousands on electricity bills and will only continue to save more over time
    • The resale value of your home skyrockets. Many home buyers now are searching for homes that come with a solar system already installed
    • The government offers a massive tax credit when it comes to solar systems. Some states also offer a rebate program
    • The systems come with a warranty that secures your investment for at least 25 years

    How Much Does it Cost Total For a 1500 Square Foot House?

    The typical 1500 square foot house can use around a 6kw solar panel system. The total cost of the panels and full installation can be estimated at about 18000.

    To get an estimate for your home and how much you can save, contact a local energy consultant. They can provide you with an installation quote and answer any questions you have about solar systems for your home.

    Things to Keep In Mind

    Solar panels are a great way to save money and go green. However, they only work effectively when using the correct products and proper installation.

    You want to make sure to only use quality solar panels and solar equipment. Using cheap or knock-off brands won’t produce as much as quality products.

    Ensuring proper installation is key to a solar system. Not having it properly installed can cause ineffective panels, failure, or fires. Make sure to always have a Professional company conduct the install for your home.

    Wrapping Up

    Now that you have an in-depth understanding of how solar panels work and how many you’re going to need, Its time to go green and start saving money. Contact a professional solar company and receive a quote to have your solar system installed for your home.

    If you have further questions about solar panels or are ready to get them installed for your home, send us a message today.

    How Many Solar Panels Do I Need?

    Lexie came from HomeAdvisor and Angi (formerly Angie’s list) and is responsible for writing and editing articles over a wide variety of home-related topics. She has almost four years’ experience in the home improvement space.

    We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Home. Commissions do not affect our editors’ opinions or evaluations.

    Solar panels have enjoyed a meteoric rise in popularity in recent decades. That’s thanks in part to an increase in environmentally responsible behavior and the desire to reduce energy bills by exchanging traditional sources of heating, cooling and electricity with cleaner, more natural sources. If you’re thinking of making this switch, you’re probably wondering how many solar panels it takes to power a house.

    While the answer can be a bit complicated, if you hire a professional or solar panel installation company to consult with, they’ll likely handle this part of the process as well (and may give you tips on how to maintain and clean solar panels ).

    THIS IS AN ADVERTISEMENT AND NOT EDITORIAL CONTENT. Please note that we do receive compensation for any products you buy or sign up to via this advertisement, and that compensation impacts the ranking and placement of any offers listed herein. We do not present information about every offer available. The information and savings numbers depicted above are for demonstration purposes only, and your results may vary.

    Power Your Home With Solar

    Find a network of trusted installers for your solar system, solar panels and electricity needs. Find a solar panel installer today!

    But if you’re wondering how many solar panels you may need, and you’d like to take a stab at calculating it yourself, you’ll need a few pieces of information: how much energy your household uses; how much space you have on your roof that can be used for solar panel placement, how many hours of sun your home gets and the wattage and relative efficiency of the photovoltaic (PV) solar panels you’ll be installing.

    How to Determine Solar Panel Needs

    In order to learn how many solar panels are needed to power a house, you’ll use a formula with three key factors, according to EnergySage: annual energy usage, panel wattage and production ratios. But what does that mean exactly?

    Annual Electricity Usage

    The first step is to determine your annual electricity usage; that’s the amount of electricity consumed by your entire household in a year. Measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh), this number includes all sources of electricity in your home, including small and large appliances, air conditioning units, lights, air purifiers and water heaters. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) indicates the average household consumes about 11,000 kWh of electricity per year.

    Solar Panel Wattage

    When choosing the best solar panels you may think they look mostly the same, but they aren’t exactly created equally, so you’ll need to know the wattage of the panels you’re hoping to install. The panel wattage is the amount of electricity emitted from the panel. Most solar panels range between 250 to 400 watts of power, so it’s safe to assume 300 is the average panel wattage you might find.

    Production Ratios

    According to EnergySage, a solar panel system’s production ratio is the ratio of the estimated energy output of a system over time (in kWh) to the actual system size (in W). You might think that this would be a 1:1 ratio – that you get out what goes in. But variations in the amount of sunlight that beams down on your home cause that not to be the case.

    A 10 kW system that produces 16 kWh of electricity in a year will have a production ratio of 1.6 (16/10 = 1.6). In a place like Hawaii, which enjoys long days and consistent sunshine, it’s totally possible to have this type of ratio, whereas cloudy, rainy New England might see an average production ratio of only 1.2

    Calculate How Many Solar Panels You Need

    Here’s the actual formula, used by EnergySage, that you can use you’re hoping to determine how many solar panels you’ll need:

    • Number of panels = system size / production ratio / panel wattage
    • Using the numbers we’ve determined so far, we get:
    • Number of panels = 11,000 kW / 1.6 / 300 W

    That equates to about 20 to 25 solar panels to do the job. You can use this same formula to determine how many solar panels you’ll need to power your home. Or, you can use the easier route, which is to look at your energy bill to determine what you’ll need.

    THIS IS AN ADVERTISEMENT AND NOT EDITORIAL CONTENT. Please note that we do receive compensation for any products you buy or sign up to via this advertisement, and that compensation impacts the ranking and placement of any offers listed herein. We do not present information about every offer available. The information and savings numbers depicted above are for demonstration purposes only, and your results may vary.

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    An Alternative Way to Figure Out Solar Energy Usage

    If you’re not interested in doing the math on your own, simply look at your utility bills to figure out how much energy you’re using. Doing this allows you to multiply your energy usage by the number of hours of strong sunlight your home gets, then dividing that result by the wattage of the panels you’re thinking of installing.

    Factors that Affect How Many Solar Panels You Will Need

    Is there anything else to think about outside of the above calculations? Turns out, there are a few other things factors need to consider when determining how many solar panels to power a house.

    Solar Panel Output Efficiency

    Your solar panels won’t draw the sun’s energy at top capacity all the time. Think of those three-day bouts of rain that come in the fall, or large snowfalls in the winter that take several days to melt. Those are times you’ll need a buffer in your energy usage, so it’s recommended to have about 25% more solar panels than you need.

    Hours of Sunlight

    The amount of energy you’ll get from your solar panels is directly related to how much sun your home gets. panels will be required if you live in an area without long hours of strong sunshine.

    Wattage of Your Panels

    Most solar panels range in wattage from 150 to 350 watts per panel. If you choose lower wattage panels, you’ll need more in order to generate enough energy for your home. Of course, that’s assuming you’d like to replace 100% of your energy usage with solar energy. If you’re only hoping for a partial conversion, the difference in solar panel wattage may not matter as much.

    Cost of Solar Panels

    How much do you want to or plan to spend on your solar panels ? Before you buy, make sure you know how many make sense for your budget.

    Solar Panel Size

    To understand how many solar panels you’ll need, you must know the standard sizes of solar panels to know how many you can place on your roof. The area of a residential 60-cell solar panel is 17.62 square feet, and the area of a commercial 72-cell solar panel is 21.13 square feet. Solar panel installation companies will measure the area of your roof to determine how many panels can be installed safely.

    THIS IS AN ADVERTISEMENT AND NOT EDITORIAL CONTENT. Please note that we do receive compensation for any products you buy or sign up to via this advertisement, and that compensation impacts the ranking and placement of any offers listed herein. We do not present information about every offer available. The information and savings numbers depicted above are for demonstration purposes only, and your results may vary.

    Compare Quotes From Top-rated Solar Panel Installers

    Free, No-commitment Estimates

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