Tue. Jul 16th, 2024
Car with Solar Panels

Charging your Car with Solar Panels

If you’ve bought an electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle, you’re probably interested in a greener way of living – and that’s commendable. Fossil fuels will eventually run out, so looking at sustainable alternatives is definitely the way forward. Many people have solar panels too so they don’t have to rely on the National Grid. The question is – can you charge your car using solar energy? Wouldn’t that be the ultimate eco-friendly combination? Let’s find out more.

Using Solar Panels to Charge an EV

To get straight to the point – you can charge an EV using solar power. A solar PV specialist will install the right amount of panels for your energy needs, so if you’re new to the solar panel world, be sure to tell them you want to charge your car as part of the set-up. A 3-4 bed home with 16 solar panels will easily have enough solar power to charge an average sized EV with an average sized battery. If you plan to charge your EV overnight when you’re not busy and when electricity tariffs are at their lowest, then investing in a solar battery system is also a good idea. This will allow you to tap into solar energy even when the sun has set.

As well as some sort of solar battery, you’ll also need a home charging unit and a PV converter for electric car charging. Solar panels generate AC power. The PV unit will convert this to usable DC power which is perfect for electric car charging. Many car manufacturers will offer home charging units with a vehicle purchase, so look out for good deals. Otherwise, you can choose a wallbox that provides between 3kW and 22kW depending on the battery size of your electric vehicle and how fast you need your vehicle to be charged.

Is Charging My Car with Solar Panels Effective?

Going green is great, right? But it has to work for you. Solar panels are most effective when they’re installed properly. A specialist will look at your energy needs and provide the right amount of panels for your property, but your setup needs to be efficient too in order to reap the most benefits. A south-facing roof will be exposed to the most sunlight and therefore produce the most solar power, but south-east and south-west facing roofs can also provide a good level of power. Your specialist will advise whether your roof is suitable for installation.

On average, solar panel systems generate between one and four kilowatts of electricity per day. That’s enough to fully charge an electric car with a 40kWh battery in just over eight hours. The average plug-in hybrid has a 14kWh battery, which means you can fully charge it and have power to spare.

Charging your EV with solar power is a winning combination for those looking to live a greener and more affordable lifestyle. Solar PV installers in Kent provide solar panels to suit your property as well as battery storage systems for solar power usage after dark. Find the right setup for you and continue your journey to a greener living environment.

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