How Does Solar Power Work?

There are a few different types of solar power. Here, we will discuss Solar Photovoltaics.

Solar Photovoltaics Solar Power

In the simplest terms, solar power works when sunlight is converted to electricity. This happens when electrons are knocked loose from silicon semiconductors by the sunlight’s photons.

  • That electricity is then conducted through wiring to an inverter that converts it to AC power that you use in your home.
  • Power then goes through your electrical panel that services the devices you want to power.
  • From the electrical panel, solar energy will power your devices just as the normal power grid would.
  • If you do not have enough solar energy to power your devices, the utility’s power grid will provide the rest of the power.
  • If you have a surplus of solar power even after you have powered all your devices, then you can send that surplus of power to the utility’s power grid, storing it as a credit to use in the future when the sun is not shining. Learn about net metering and other incentives in Washington State.

Store Solar Power

You also can use batteries to store solar power, but the system becomes more complicated.

How Solar Panels Work

A smarter energy solution is closer than you think. Take the first step today.

Last Modified: February 19, 2018

Share this article. Knowledge is power...