Solar Panel Sizes & Dimensions

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Jack Ayre

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Are you considering purchasing your very own solar array system, but you don’t know whether you have enough space to power your home? This article will break down everything you need to know regarding the types of solar panels available on the market, any size and dimension information you need, and how many solar panels your system will require.

With spiralling energy prices and the cost of living crisis, households throughout the United Kingdom are looking into ways to reduce their energy bills. One of the most popular methods that has grown in recent years is to install your own solar panel system, and move away from the National Grid, to power your home. Not only will this reduce your bills, but you also gain energy independence and become more environmentally friendly.

What Types Of Solar Panels Are Available?

There are a variety of different types of solar cells on the market that can fulfil your energy needs. Whether you are looking to purchase solar panels on the cheap, have high energy demands, or have a limited amount of space, there will be solar panels that will fill your requirements.

Monocrystalline Solar Panels

One of the most popular forms of solar panels are monocrystalline panels. They are made from pure silicon crystal, which allows these panels to have an extended lifespan and come in a more compact size. Additionally, they are also more discrete compared to other panels due to their black colouring.

However, the production of monocrystalline panels allows for more silicon waste compared to other panels. This consequence tends to result in a higher price tag compared to other types of solar panels.

Polycrystalline Solar Panels

Completely contrasting with their monocrystalline counterpart, polycrystalline panels produce almost zero waste during the manufacturing process. Meaning that these panels tend to be cheaper than the former.

However, by selecting these cheaper panels you will be compromising on your solar panel system’s efficiency rating. Compared to the monocrystalline panels, polycrystalline solar panels also tend to take up more space, which is not ideal for smaller properties.

Passivated Emitter And Rear Cell Panels

Passivated emitter and rear cell panels, also known as PERC panels, are a new evolution of monocrystalline solar panels. These new solar cells have greater reflective qualities, meaning that they can utilise the rear of your solar panels while also optimising the sun exposure the front of the panels also receives.

The fact that PERC panels can utilise both sides of a panel means that they are ideal for properties that have limited available space. However, they are also slightly more expensive compared to traditional panels.

Thin Film Solar Panels

The easiest solar panel systems to install are those that utilise thin film panels. These solar panels do not require frame backing and are extremely thin, making them both lighter and easier to install. Additionally, thin film solar panels break the mould regarding standardised sizing as they can be manufactured to any required size.

However, comparing thin film solar panels to the other three variants, these panels are the least efficient on the market.

What Are The Most Common Residential Solar Panels?

Most residential solar panels tend to feature monocrystalline cells. This is because they are one of the most efficient options available on the market, and they also have the required power capacity to fulfil a household’s energy consumption requirement. Additionally, they do not require an extensive amount of space, making them the perfect fit for properties with a minimum amount of available space.

Whereas commercial solar panels tend to be made out of monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin film solar cells depending on the requirements of the business. If the property is unusually shaped, or the solar panel installer must work around limited available space, commercial properties may also opt for PERC panels.

Pros And Cons Of Solar Panels

Advantages Of Solar Panels

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

As we have previously mentioned, installing a solar panel system on your property could help you reduce your household’s carbon footprint. Instead of relying on the National Grid, which utilises fossil fuels, to power your home you can generate your very own solar energy.

Gain Energy Independence

Moving away from using the National Grid’s electricity allows you to gain energy independence. Not only will you no longer be vulnerable to energy price rises, but you will also be protected against power outages.

Additionally, if your solar panels fail to power your home, you can always rely on the Grid to fill any voids that you may experience.

Slash Your Energy Bills

Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of solar panels, especially considering the current economic climate, is that they can reduce your energy bills. As your household will be utilising the electricity that your solar panels produce, you will no longer have to pay the ever increasing prices demanded by the big energy companies.

Disadvantages Of Solar Panels

High Initial Cost

While your solar panel system will save you money in the long run, one of the biggest drawbacks about making the purchase is the high initial cost. Across the lifespan of your solar system, which spans between 25 to 30 years on average, the panels will pay for themselves and make you further savings. But the initial cost will set you back £1000s.

However, there are a variety of financial aid options available to the vast majority of UK households.

Reliant On Sun Exposure

Solar panels work by capturing sunlight and converting it into usable electricity that can power your household appliances and devices. However, if the area you live in does not receive much sunlight, this could be an issue. It is important to note, however, that solar panels will generate electricity even during overcast days, they simply won’t work as efficiently.

Requires Free Space On Your Property

While this article will delve in deeper to the average size and dimensions of solar panels, no matter how many solar panels you require, you will need an extensive amount of available space on your property. The more power your household requires, the more panels you will need, which will result in more space being taken up. If you don’t have enough space for the amount of solar panels you require, then this might not be the alternative energy generation method for you.

What Size Solar Panels Are Available?

When it comes to the size of solar panels that are typically available on the market, there are three standardised cell sizes. These are:

  • 60-cell solar panels.
  • 72-cell solar panels.
  • 96-cell solar panels.

 

The standard solar panel size used in most residential households are either the 60-cell or 72-cell options. This is because the larger 96-cell panels are often too big to be installed on residential properties.

solar panel weight

What Are The Dimensions Of Solar Panels?

Now that you know what the most common solar panel sizes available on the market are, you may be wondering what the average solar panel dimensions are depending on each size. Knowing the dimensions of each solar panel size will allow you to get a better grasp on whether you have enough available space for solar panels on your property. Our solar experts can help you there if you’re unsure if you have the space.

The table below details the dimensions of each solar panel size, as well as the grid size they require:

Dimensions of the most common solar panel sizes
Solar panel sizeDimensionsGrid size
60-cell solar panel3.25 feet x 5.5 feet6 x 10
72-cell solar panel3.25 feet x 6.42 feet6 x 12
96-cell solar panel41.5 inches x 62.6 inches 8 x 12

 

If you are looking for small solar panels, perhaps due to a lack of space, then your best bet will be to purchase either the 60-cell or 72-cell panels. Alternatively, if you require more powerful solar panels or if you have more space, then you could also consider the 96-cell option.

How Much Do Solar Panels Weigh?

There are a variety of factors that can influence final solar panel weight, including:

  • The cell structure of the panels.
  • The materials used in the production of the panels.
  • Any mounting accessories used during the installation process.

 

Typically, a solar panel can weigh anywhere between 40 to 60 pounds (18 to 27 kg), depending on the previously mentioned factors.

How Many Solar Panels Do I Need?

Another key factor that can influence the final size of your solar panel system as a whole is how many panels your household will require to generate the amount of electricity you need. To establish the amount of solar panels you need, you must first work out your household’s energy usage. ESE Group’s solar energy experts can help you calculate your household’s power requirements.

Once you have completed this calculation, the table below will help you figure out how many solar panels your desired system will require:

How many solar panels do I need?
Solar panel system sizeAmount of solar panels required
6kW19
8kW25
10kW32
12kW38
14kW44

 

Factors That Can Affect How Many Solar Panels You May Need

Household Energy Consumption

As we have previously mentioned, how much electricity your household requires on a daily basis will have a major impact on the solar panel system you will require. The greater your energy consumption, the bigger the system and more panels you will need. Additionally, you may also want to look into purchasing a solar battery which can store any excess energy that your panels generate.

Your Budget

Related to the previous point, how much solar panels can cost the average household can be a huge turn off for those considering making the purchase. Whether it’s the worry of making such a big investment, or purchasing enough solar panels to fulfil your power requirements, ensuring that your budget can cover all the necessary expenses is a huge factor to take into consideration.

ESE offers solar finance options for customers looking to improve their home with solar panels who might not have the capital to pay for the installation all at once upfront. 

How Much Roof Space You Have Available

Most residential households will opt to install solar panels on their roofs. Not only is this space that wasn’t previously being utilised, but it will also free up any available ground space. However, the more solar panels you need the more roof space you will require. If you don’t have enough available roof space, then the system’s energy generation capabilities will suffer.

Where Can I Have Solar Panels Installed?

The most popular location to install solar panels is on any available roof space that your property has. However, if you are installing solar panels on your roof space, depending on the number of solar panels you wish to install, the space might not be suitable. This is because there is a hierarchy of preferential roof locations, which goes from:

  • Most preferred: South-facing roofs.
  • Middle ground: East or west-facing roofs.
  • Unpreferred: North-facing roofs.

 

Additionally, if your roof area is shaded or obscured during daylight hours, installing solar panels on your roof may not be ideal. If you have a north-facing roof or a shaded roof area, then the solar panel installer may opt to install your solar panels on any free ground space around your property if this option is viable.

Solar Panel Sizes & Dimensions Summary

If you are considering purchasing your own solar panel system, but you are worried that there isn’t a system size that will fit on your property, we hope that we have reassured you that there are sizes to fulfil anyone’s requirements. The table below will provide you with a brief outline regarding the sizes and dimensions for the most common solar panel used on residential properties:

Sizes and dimensions of solar panels
Solar panel sizeDimensions
60-cell solar panel3.25 feet x 5.5 feet
72-cell solar panel3.25 feet x 6.42 feet
96-cell solar panel41.5 inches x 62.6 inches 

 

If you are still unsure about what solar panel size or system size will fulfil your household’s power needs, then why not get in touch with ESE Group today? Our solar experts will be able to help you find the perfect solar panel system for your household that will fulfil your needs whilst also keeping to your budget.

 

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Born in North West England, Jack kicked off his career in the insurance arena, dealing with claims for three years. Always up for a challenge, Jack leapt out of his comfort zone and embarked upon 5 years of excitement with the military.

Working for the Ministry of Defence, Jack specialised in counter-terrorism which took him to places such as Dubai, Oman, Iraq, Norway and Bahrain. During this period he worked with various Governments implementing strategic operations to prevent terrorism.

After travelling around various countries Jack increasingly came across various forms of solar from large solar farms to domestic solar panels. From here Jack took a keen interest in all things solar and started reading about the technological capabilities with a view to entering the industry after his career in the Ministry of Defence.

Once home after 5 fruitful years, Jack had 3 months leave in which he immersed himself in a solar crash course and got applying for jobs within the solar sector. He came across ESE Solar, a long-established forward-thinking company whose head office was only a stone’s throw away from him. He picked up the phone to see if there were any vacancies and within a week had a successful interview and obtained a full-time job, starting in the technical team.

Within the first few months, Jack onboarded in various online courses during work and social hours to speed up his knowledge of all things solar. Due to his strong work ethic and thirst for knowledge Jack was promoted to Head of Technical at ESE Solar. He currently leads the team and oversees the product development of new technologies within the company alongside assisting where necessary on their maintenance department.

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