The short answer: yes, they will work. In the Northern Hemisphere, your solar panels should face south to generate the most electricity, but sometimes there isn't much choice.
Solar panels are typically mounted on roofs, so homeowners have only a few options when it comes to their orientation. The azimuth is also known as 0°, which means pointing north, and 180°, which means facing south.
What is the best direction for solar panels to face?
Solar panels facing south in the Northern Hemisphere, where the United States is located, will produce the most electricity.
On average, during the year, the sun shines directly over the Equator. You can get the most sunlight if you face south towards the Equator if you are north of it. The Sun crosses the southern half of the sky all year long in any part of the world north of the Tropic of Cancer (23,4°N Latitude). This includes the entire U.S. mainland.
The United States is oriented south, so solar panels oriented south will always face the sun.
What are the benefits of pointing your solar panels south?
The sun rises in the eastern sky in the Northern Hemisphere, sets in the western sky, and spends all of its time in the southern half of the sky. Because of this, when you have fixed placement solar panels - such as those on your roof - facing them directly south will give you the most electricity. Sunlight hits directly south.
Solar installations facing east require net metering
Solar home owners get billed according to their net electricity usage with net metering. Consider the case where your solar panels produced 500 kWh of electricity in one month, but your home used 501 kWh. As a result of net metering, you will be billed for 1 kWh of electricity. At the time of usage, it wouldn't matter whether your house was actually running on grid electricity or solar electricity. With net metering, it does not matter. Only your net usage counts.
The problem with east-facing panels without net metering
As a result, the solar homeowner has to use as little grid electricity as possible without net metering. Any extra solar electricity, from the homeowner's point of view, is largely wasted (although the utility company still reaps significant benefits). However, most people leave the house for work and school every day. When nobody is around, the electricity might then drop off and if it's early in the day, your house didn't have the chance to warm up yet and the ac isn't operating.
Call SunPower by Green Convergence for your solar panel installation
If you’re looking for a way to save money, keep your solar facing the right direction for your home, and generating the maximum amount of energy possible, contact us and let us help you explore your options for installing a solar.
Call the pros at SunPower by Green Convergence at (661) 491-5111!