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Which way should Solar Panels Face ?

Ask this question to any solar expert in the Northern Hemisphere like India, and the simple answer to this question is South! But though you will find multiple plants which do not face true south and some even face east west. As you might realised there is no definitive answer to this question, it all depends on site conditions, geography of the site, nearby obstructions, roof type and the capacity of the solar plant.

South is generally suggested as, India is in the Northern Hemisphere Earth meaning we are above the equator. Meaning, the sun's path will always be tending towards south in all the seasons year long. It might get below a certain angle during winters and higher in summers, but the sun will always be in the south. Thus to get the maximum energy out of the sun through your solar panels, the panels are always tried to face south, true south. In some conditions, when the roof is itself inclined towards east - west or there is a huge obstruction in the south we try to take advantage of the east west combination. The east part of the solar plant will generate more energy during morning or pre-noon and the west part of the plant will have higher generation post noon. Through, you will need to ensure that east and west facing solar panels are on two diffrent strings connected to the inverter (in case of string inverter) for this advantage.

Softwares like Helioscope are generally used to place the solar panels in diffrent diffrent directions in the simulation and the generation of the solar plant is measured. They give a pretty accurate estimate of which direction or particularly the angle of the solar panels it should face for maximum generation output.

When considering solar panel installation, keep in mind that for maximum energy production, your panels should be exposed to direct sunlight throughout the day. Again, this means orienting your panels toward true south in the Northern Hemisphere and vice versa in the Southern Hemisphere.

It's worth noting that when we talk about true south, we're referring to geographic south, not magnetic south. In other words, you should orient your solar energy system using longitude lines on a map rather than compass directions.

Another thing to consider is that if you want to adjust the hours that your solar panels provide energy, a slight rotation away from the best direction may be beneficial (like facing them southwest to get more energy in the late afternoon as the sun is setting).

Hopefully, you have a south-facing roof that is well-suited for solar panels. However, if the orientation of your roof isn't quite right, solar power isn't out of the question. Other options to consider include solar carports and ground-mounted solar panels that can use south-facing panels to maximize electricity production.

The Best Solar Panel Angle

It's important to choose the right angle for your solar panels in addition to the best direction. In this case, the general rule of thumb is to set the tilt angle of the solar panels to be equal to the geographical latitude. In other words, if you're at 17 degrees latitude, you should angle your panels at 17 degrees.

The angle of your solar panels will help ensure that the sun hits them perpendicularly, promoting maximum solar production and, as a result, maximum electricity bill savings for your household. Having said that, you should also consider how weather affects solar panels.

Heavy snowfall is a good example of this. If you live in an area of the country where there is a lot of snow, the efficacy of your solar panels may suffer as a result. You can reduce the accumulation of snow or other debris by tilting your panels at a sharper angle.

This may all sound technical, but it's important to note that professional solar installers will work with you to design an optimal solar power system, including recommending where to place your panels, how to angle them, and more.

Tracking Systems for Solar Panels

Consider installing a solar panel tracking system for ground-mounted panels. Solar trackers increase panel efficiency by rotating your panels throughout the day, allowing them to track the sun's movement from sunrise to sunset. What difference can a tracker make in the efficiency of your solar panel system?

According to one study, on a clear day, the average efficiency of a tracking panel is about 67 percent, while fixed panels are only about 40 percent efficient. When looking into solar panel tracking systems, you'll need to decide whether you want a single-axis or dual-axis system.

Single axis systems can only move one way, typically north to south. A dual axis system allows movement along both the north-south and east-west axes. Dual axis systems require more space and are therefore mostly found in commercial settings.

They can certainly be useful, allowing your solar panels to reposition themselves in accordance with changing seasons when the sun is higher or lower in the sky, but they are rarely required for residential use.


If you want to be the part of BigWit solar rooftop family, you can give us a call on 7082955224 or send us a mail on BigWit Energy is one of the best solar companies in Chandigarh, Mohali, Punjab, Panchkula and all of North India and we offer EMI plans of upto 3 years for our customers too pan India!

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