How Much Solar Power Do You Need To Run Household Appliances?

We Break It Down To The Nitty Gritty.

Disclosure: Some posts contain affiliate links, which earn us a commission if you make a purchase through them.

We Break It Down To The Nitty Gritty

Solar power is becoming increasingly popular in modern times and leverages many benefits over standard power consumption.

As the environment and using renewable energy has come to the forefront of people’s minds, solar power has come to the rescue.

Depending on your circumstances, you can dramatically lower your electricity bill by incorporating a solar panel system into your residential building.

You may be even able to eliminate your electricity bill.

The overall amount of energy you’ll be able to generate by using solar panels on your roofing will vary depending on your building’s geographical location and orientation.

The question remains: how much solar power do you need to run household appliances?

It’s crucial to understand how much power you’ll be needing to generate to cover all your day-to-day appliances.

How Much Solar Power is Needed to Power an Average House?

Purchasing and installing a solar power system that simply doesn’t do the job is a nightmare that you don’t want to deal with.

That’s why you should ensure you understand household appliance consumption so you’re prepared to buy the most appropriate power system.

However, energy usage may not be as low as you think.

Household Appliances and Energy Use

Calculating your household appliance’s energy consumption may vary wildly from person to person.

In fact, many factors will come into play when calculating energy use.

If you’re constantly traveling or work through the nights, you’ll find that your appliances will use less energy than others. The same can be said if you’re a fan of going out to eat.

Beyond your daily usage of household appliances, you should remember that your residential building will generate a different amount of electricity than other solar power systems.

That’s because the orientation of the building will play a large factor in determining how much electricity you’re able to generate.

Ideally, you want to have a southward facing roof to absorb as much direct sunlight as possible each day.

In the same vein, if you live in an area where it’s constantly sunny, you’ll generate a ton more power than those who live in areas where it’s consistently cloudy.

If just one solar cell on solar power is shaded, the amount of energy it produces can drop to as little as 50 percent efficiency.

Take these thoughts into consideration when thinking of how much energy you’re going to need to produce through a solar power system.

How Much Power Does One Solar Panel Produce?

On average, a high-efficiency solar panel in ideal conditions can produce approximately 250 to 400 watts of power. A solar panel produces around 30 kWh of energy per month.

With this in mind, we can begin to determine how many solar panels you’ll need to power different appliances in your house.

But take all of this with a grain of salt!

It really depends on whether you’re using monocrystalline vs polycrystalline panels vs thin-film solar panels.

Some are more efficient than others, and output varies wildly.

More info about the differences between the types of solar panels here.

How Much Solar Power Do I Need to Run a Refrigerator?

On average, a refrigerator can use about 495kWh of electricity in a year. After some quick math, we can determine that a refrigerator will use an average of 41.25kWh of electricity per month.

However, it should be noted that these numbers may vary depending on the age and model of your refrigerator. Modern times brought many amenities, including refrigerators that use less power.

If you’re using a fridge that’s 20 years older or more, expect the energy consumption to more than triple.

Your fridge will also use more energy if it’s constantly stocked. The more items being cooled, the more energy will be required to keep everything cool. If you’re a fan of a fully-stocked refrigerator, be warned that your energy consumption will be higher than those who keep fewer items.

In the end, one solar panel will take care of your refrigerator without using even one-sixth of its total amount of energy produced.

How Much Solar Power Do I Need to Run an Air Conditioner?

Air conditioning will use an average of 1.3kw of power, however, they can use as much as 2.5kw depending on your current conditions. Solar panel systems will generate between 2kw to 4kw, so you’ll be hard-pressed to power all of your air conditioning using a solar panel.

The thing is — air conditioning can be tricky to calculate, and you’ll be surprised at how much energy it uses.

AC units come in many different sizes and shapes; window units and central air systems will use a varying amount of energy. Typically, a central air system will be more effective and more commonly found in households. So, we’ll use that as our guide.

If you’re using a lot of energy on air conditioning, you can use your entire solar power system to provide air conditioning and still end up having to pay out of pocket.

This is even truer if you live in an area where you’re constantly turning the air on.

However, the better your building is orientated to receive sunlight for power, the more energy it can produce.

If you have an efficient solar power system, you could theoretically power all of your air conditioning use, 24 hours a day.

How Much Solar Power Do I Need to Run a TV?

The amount of solar energy needed to power a TV is going depend on the model of TV you own.

Large, more extravagant TVs will require more power. For example, a 60-inch LED TV ay use 300 kWh while a 32-inch LCD TV may only use 75 kWh. You should be able to find the power consumption your TV uses on the box or by doing a simple google of the product model.

For the sake of determining the amount of solar power needed to run a TV, we’ll assume the average TV to consume roughly 200 kWh of electricity.

As stated earlier, a singular solar panel will produce 265 watts of power and produces 30 kWh of energy per month.

With that in mind, we can determine that one solar panel won’t be enough to power your TV for a singular hour. You’ll need to incorporate a solar panel system with at least seven solar panels to be able to consistently power your TV without incurring any standard electricity charges.

How Much Solar Power Do I Need to Run a Heater?

Heaters aren’t made equally and you’ll find that there are many variations of heaters that are used to warm houses across the world. For this question, we’ll stick to the most commonly used heater: the simple space heater.

Generally, you’ll find that space heaters come in at around 1500W of power consumption. This is the most powerful source of heat without looking into other resources outside of electricity.

Using the rate of 265-watts of power from earlier, you can find that you’ll require at least 12 solar panels to efficiently run a space heater with solar power.

This isn’t the most efficient use of solar power and is rarely done by those who aren’t hardcore solar power lovers.

However, it can be a useful application for renewable energy.

Calculating the Power Consumption of Household Appliances

If you’re wondering how much solar energy is needed for any other household appliances, you’re in luck. There’s a user-friendly calculation you can follow to help you understand your estimated consumption.

Power consumption is always measured in watts-hour (kWh). Appliances use energy determined by watts, and their hourly consumption is measured as kWh.

An easy way to check the amount of wattage an appliance uses is to check the wattage shown near the power cord. This should be clearly labeled for you to see.

If you find that the power is given in amps, don’t fret. A simple formula can be used to find out the power consumption. Watts = Amps * Volts.

Once you’ve found the amount of power your appliance uses, you can easily use the average numbers given above to determine how much solar energy you’ll be required to use to power it.

Use this calculation on appliances such as ovens, stoves, computers, and other daily appliances you use around your house.

You’ll soon be on your way to ensuring you get the appropriate solar power system.

How Much Energy Do Electric Appliances Use?

Understanding how much energy your household appliances use is one aspect of the equation.

You should remember that the energy your appliances use will be determined by how often you use them. It’s entirely possible to easily power the air conditioning in your home if you’re only running it for a few hours each afternoon. However, it’ll be another story if you want to have it running 12 hours a day.

In Summary

Solar power isn’t for everyone, but it can certainly power your household appliances and shave some money off your electricity bill.

Remember to factor in your daily usage of an appliance to get a better understanding of how well solar power can be used to power it.

More Stories
Ground Mounted Solar Panels (Are They Worth It?)