Can Solar Energy power my whole house?

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Here at Green Energy Ipswich we believe that Solar panels are a great option for customers who want save on energy costs and be less reliant on high energy prices the question still stands can solar power negate the option of pulling power from the grid?

The short answer is yes In theory, they can but in a real world scenario  it will be extremely difficult for the average homeowner to install enough solar panels to power their entire home even if you have a large array. There is a but they can generate enough energy to power household appliances such as your dishwasher, TV and fridge-freezer if you have the correct installation and battery storage . Many customers want to see if they can go off grid to lower their energy bills and help the enviroment but that is not the whole solution it many be easier to adjust your energy needs alongside the installation of renewables.

In this post, we will dig down into how to power your home with solar power and make effiecncy savings and how solar panels  can help you become more self-sufficient with renewable energy source.

“Off the grid” what does this mean?

You often hear the term ‘off-the-grid’ means not using public utility companies like water, electric and gas this is often use by people who live in isolated areas, but you can also benefit form going off grid as most clients want to reduce there dependence of fossil fuels and want to help the environment. Most solar panel installs are connected to the grid as of writing it’s uncommon to install off-grid solar systems.

Green power has many advantages for those who want to reduce their reliance on utility companies if you have your own green power system then you will also be reducing your carbon footprint, but how much power do yo need to generate from solar panels and can you be self sufficient once they are installed.

Solar panels how much energy can they produce?

Current solar panel technology won’t allow for you to run your whole house entirely of grid but doesn’t mean they aren’t a good idea for a client looking to reduce their energy bills.

The amount of electricity a solar panel produces depends on two main factors:

  1. How much sunlight the panels are exposed to each day this is why Green Energy Ipswich have the most competent installers and technicians to suggest the correct angle and area to situate the panels to generate maximum efficiency from the sunlight.
  2. The efficiency rating of the panel and its various components. This rating is usually between 15 and 20%; the more modern and more expensive the panel, the better the efficiency typically is. The more efficient the panel, the more energy it can generate from the same amount of sunlight.

Solar panels have an average output of anywhere between 250-400W the higher quality the panel the more electricity it will produce and the the higher the wattage, it will product more wattage under the same conditions. Client’s who get solar panels installed in the UK generally get a 3-4kW system this is generally made up of an array of 8-12 Solar panels. You can get as much as 2,450 and 3,000 KWH per year this of course depends on sunlight positioning and the quality of the panels and the peripherals.

How much power do I need ?

The amount of energy that a household uses depends on many things.

  1. How many people live in the house
  2. How much each person uses
  3. How well the house is insulated
  4. If the house is run on electricity or gas or both


Normally the majority of solar power is produced around midday the most power is often consumed often has a peak at the start of the day due to things like making breakfast, having showers and using hairdryers consumption then peaks again at night when the heating goes on oven and other appliances are used.

Average homes use somewhere around 2,900 kWh of electricity per year according to Ofgem, so would your new solar panel system cover the annual household electricity consumption

It used to be that your energy consumption would need to match your production form your panels but now with battery storage and the use of inverters to transfer the current to 240V you can sell any unused electricity when it is transferred back to the grid to be used elsewhere but be aware won’t be compensated for this unless you have a SEG tariff.

To give yourself a better understanding Green Energy Ipswich will be posting many more articles in our blog and news pages so you can get the most out of your solar PV system so you van have a better balance of directly used solar power and lower your  imported electricity.

Solar power so how much does it take to run a home?

Solar may not be able to get you off the grid completely but combined with battery storage you can still make a huge dent in your grid consumption.Home appliances can be run on solar directly and using batteries so saving energy is still worth while.There are many devices in your home that could be powered by solar panels. According to the Centre for Sustainable Energy:

Below are average figures for energy consumption.

  • Kettles use 163 kWh/year
  • Toasters use 115 kWh/year
  • Hairdryers use 172 kWh/year
  • Computer Screen uses 330 kWh/year
  • Washing Machines use 255 kWh/year
  • LCD TV’s use 175 kWh/year
  • Dishwashers use 657 kWh/year

Depending on your solar panel system, you could charge batteries and use the power later or if you use more electricity than you generate you would have to buy from the grid.

Making the most of solar panels!

Installing green energy solution like solar panels will same you money after the initial investment they might not be able to power eveyrthing in your home but with the advancement of battery storage you can certain improve your impact on the environment.

Most households use a significant portion of their electricity in the evening because Solar panels do not work at night but with the use of a battery, electricity generated during the day can be saved for your nightly use and you could increase your grid independence by 50% depending on the system of batteries and solar panels you install.

Going of grid isn’t easy but you may be able to reduce you bills

  1. Supplement your panels with a wind generator
  2. Reducing your energy needs. Switching to less power-hungry appliances, getting rid of appliances you don’t need, and generally living a less tech-heavy lifestyle will mean you need less energy, to begin with.
  3. Charging battery packs during the day and heating water during the day when your energy is generated by solar

If you want more information how Green energy Ipswich can power your home take a look at our new updated Green energy website.