Solar Panels Sizes and Weights (All Sizes)

Deciding to power your building with solar energy can be quite complicated. Roofs can only withstand so much weight, and it is crucial to know how much your solar panel of choice will weigh. Plus, there are specific wattages for different uses. 

The following are some key topics that we will cover:

  • Sizes of solar panels
  • Weight of solar panels
  • Weight by different solar companies

Keep reading to discover all the details about this topic and make an informed decision when buying solar panels.

Solar Panels On A Framed Summer House
Solar Panels On A Framed Summer House

Size of Solar Panels

The wattages of solar panels can range greatly. While some solar panels power select appliances or RVs, others are powerhouses, and others can power industrial buildings. These solar panels differ in both size and weight. 

On average, a solar panel can provide 15 watts per square foot. Let’s start by breaking down the average dimensions of different solar panels by size. 

How Big Is a 100-Watt Solar Panel?

A 100-watt solar panel measures 47 inches long by 21.3 inches wide by 1.4 inches deep. 

A 100-watt solar panel is not typically used to power a residential household. It can provide enough power for small household appliances but is usually used alongside a battery. With battery storage, any excess energy can be saved for later.

Nonetheless, 100-watt solar panels have become very popular due to their small, portable size. They are often brought on camping and RV trips. Travelers are granted peace of mind because they are easy to replace in the middle of a vacation, if necessary.

How Big Is a 200-Watt Solar Panel?

A 200-watt solar panel measures 64.57 inches long by 39.06 inches wide by 1.48 inches deep. 

Two-hundred-watt solar panels are still quite small, but they can power some houses. They are also perfect for RVs and boats. Many people select this size for its versatility and its compact size. 

Size of 60-Cell Solar Panels

The dimensions of these 60-cell solar panels are 66 inches long by 40 inches wide. The typical depth will range from 1.4 to 1.8 inches.

In most cases, 60-cell solar panels are used in residential households. Each panel contains 60 photovoltaic cells, which are in charge of capturing the sunlight to turn it into electricity.

Sixty-cell solar panels most commonly produce 270 to 300 watts of energy.

Size of 72-Cell Solar Panels

Seventy-two-cell solar panels measure 80 inches long by 40 inches wide. Like 60-cell solar panels, the normal depth can be between 1.4 and 1.8 inches. 

Seventy-two-cell solar panels have one additional row of photovoltaic cells compared to 60-cell solar panels. Thus, they generate more electricity and are usually implemented for commercial buildings. 

The wattage for these solar panels is between 350 to 400 watts. 

How Big Is a 500-Watt Solar Panel?

Five hundred-watt solar panels are some of the largest solar panels produced. The average dimensions are 86.61 inches long by 43.31 inches wide. Once again, the average depth ranges from 1.4 inches to 1.8 inches. 

Unfortunately, 500-watt solar panels are fairly new and too large for residential households. For the time being, they are only appropriate for large commercial and industrial buildings.

Solar Panel Size Vs. Output
Solar Panel Size Vs. Output

Weight of Solar Panels

Here are some quick facts about the average weight of solar panels with differing wattages:

  • 100-watt solar panels from 5 of the most popular brands average 18.8 pounds.
  • 200-watt solar panels from 5 of the most popular brands average 23.28 pounds.
  • Most 60-cell solar panels weigh about 44.9 pounds. Remember, these solar panels fall into the 270-300 watt range.
  • 72-cell solar panels weigh around 61.73 pounds. As you may recall, these larger panels usually provide 350 to 400 watts.

Weight per Unit

The weight of a solar panel per unit is an important consideration when deciding which size is best for your home, which we will discuss further in a later section. 

Kilograms per Square Meter

  • 100-watt solar panels that are 8.53 kilograms and measure 1.19 meters long by 0.16 meters wide have an area of 0.65 square meters. They will weigh 13.12 kilograms per square meter. 
  • 200-watt solar panels that are 10.56 kilograms and measure 1.64 meters long by 0.99 meters wide have an area of 1.63 square meters. They weigh 6.48 kilograms per square meter. 
  • 60-cell solar panels that are 20 kilograms and measure 1.68 meters long by 1.01 meters wide have an area of 1.70 meters squared. Thus, they weigh 11.76 kilograms per square meter. 
  • 72-cell solar panels that are 28 kilograms and measure 2.03 meters long by 1.01 meters wide have an area of 2.05 square meters. Therefore, they weigh 13.66 kilograms per square meter.

Pounds per Foot

  • A 100-watt solar panel that is 18.8 pounds and measures 3.92 feet long by 1.78 feet wide will have an area of 6.98 square feet. It will weigh 2.69 pounds per square foot. 
  • A 200-watt solar panel that is 23.28 pounds and measures 5.38 feet long by 3.26 feet wide will have an area of 17.54 square feet. Thus, it will weigh 1.33 pounds per square foot. 
  • 60-cell solar panels that are 44.9 pounds and measure 5.5 feet long by 3.33 feet wide have an area of 18.32 square feet. These will weigh 2.45 pounds per square foot. 
  • The larger, 72-cell solar panels that are 61.73 pounds and measure 6.67 feet long by 3.33 feet wide have an area of 22.21 square feet. Therefore, they weigh 2.78 pounds per square foot.

Weight per Watt

  • A 100-watt solar panel the same size as that mentioned above weighs 0.18 pounds per watt.
  • 200-watt solar panels identical to the one mentioned above weigh 0.12 pounds per watt. 
  • The same 60-cell solar panels mentioned above weigh 0.17 to 0.15 pounds per watt, depending upon where they fall within the 270 to 300-watt range.
  • A 72-cell solar panel identical to that mentioned above would weigh 0.18 to 0.15 pounds per watt, based on where they fall within the 350 to 400-watt range.

Weight by Popular Companies

Here are the weights of 60-cell solar panels produced by some of the top companies:

  • LG: 38 pounds
  • Hyundai: 38 to 41 pounds
  • Kyocera: 42 to 44 pounds
  • SolarWorld: 40 to 47 pounds
  • Trina: 41 to 50 pounds

When comparing the top 10 solar brands, SunPower was shown to produce the lightest solar panels.

Their panels could be as light as 33 pounds. Canadian Solar produced the heaviest solar panels, weighing up to 50 pounds. 

Fixing Damaged Roof Shingles. A Section Was Blown Off After A Storm With High Winds Causing A Potential Leak. 2 - Sol Voltaics: Solar Panel Information
Fixing Damaged Roof Shingles. A Section Was Blown Off After A Storm With High Winds Causing A Potential Leak. 2

Can My Roof Withstand Enough Solar Panels To Power My House?

The roofs of current homes can safely support about 20 pounds per square foot. Including the mounting equipment, residential solar panels weigh about 3 to 4 pounds per square foot. 

Even after a snowstorm, your roof is unlikely to encounter any trouble. If you have 10 to 12 inches of unpacked snow, the average weight is about 5 pounds per square foot. 

That snow, plus the 3 to 4 pounds per square foot of solar panels, is well below the 20 pounds per square foot limit. 

Most houses require 20 panels to produce enough electricity for everyday activities, which can cover quite a bit of space. However, the system’s weight is fairly evenly distributed and does not place excessive stress on any area.

Although solar panels may appear heavy due to their sizes, they are perfectly safe to place on your roof. 

Sources

General Solar Panel FAQ

What Problems Do Solar Panels Solve?

In environmental terms, solar panels can potentially solve a handful of problems, including;
1. Air pollution
2. Water pollution
3. Greenhouse gases
4. Reduction in fossil fuel use

For individuals, solar energy allows you to become completely self-sufficient when it comes to your electricity needs and can save you a lot of money in the long run.

What Are 3 Important Uses Of Solar Panels?

The three most important uses of solar panels are;
1. Solar electricity. This can be used to power almost any appliance in your home, including TVs, computers, and fridges.
2. Lighting. In addition to the use of low-power, LED lightbulbs, solar panels can provide an efficient, low-cost, and environmentally friendly way to provide lighting to homes. 
3. Portable solar. In our modern, always-connected lives, our phones, tablets, and computers are almost always with us, and all run on batteries. Portable PV chargers can help keep our batteries topped up no matter where we are, as long as there is some sun to charge them.

Do solar panels give you free electricity?

Once the cost of the array is paid in full, the energy it produces is free. There are ongoing maintenance costs, too, such as annual panel cleaning, etc. 

How much will my electric bill be with solar panels?

Suppose your solar array includes a solar battery backup system, and it is large enough to fully cover your energy usage per day. In that case, your monthly electric bill will be next to zero dollars, even with a grid-tied system. 

If your solar array does not include a solar battery backup system, then at night, your house or business will use grid electricity. That cost will vary but expect to pay from 1/3-2/3 of your average electric bill, and that cost will fluctuate seasonally. 

Do you save money with solar panels?

The simple answer is, Yes, you save money with solar panels. There is an initial upfront cost, but since solar panels are warrantied for 25 years, you will save money over time. You will also begin to see monthly savings in energy bills, but there are other ways that solar panels pay you back. Those include:
1. Adding value to your home or commercial building 
2. Monthly decreases in energy costs
3. The ability to add more energy appliances without increased monthly costs
4. The potential for tax credits for going solar

Can solar panels power a house 24-7?

Most definitely! Solar panels can certainly power a house 24-7, with the addition of a high-quality inverter and a suitable battery bank, of course. To power, a house under normal usage will require a massive solar array, though, and there will be a very expensive initial financial outlay.

Do I need to tell my energy supplier I have solar panels?

This depends on where you live, but in most cases, it’s not necessary to inform your energy supplier that you have solar panels. That said, you may be producing excess power with your solar system, in which case you may be able to sell that excess power back to energy companies.

In this case, you’ll naturally need to be in contact with them. 

What Are Solar Cells Known as and Why?

Solar cells are also called photovoltaic (PV) cells. They are called so because the term ‘photovoltaic’ literally means light i.e. photo and electricity i.e. voltaic.

These cells generate electricity through the photovoltaic effect. This effect basically causes the generation of free electrons from the semiconducting silicon material of the solar panel when sunlight hits its surface.

What Type of Solar Panels Are Most Efficient and Why?

There are currently three types of solar panels available in the market that are:
1. Monocrystalline
2. Polycrystalline
3. Thin-filmed

Among these, monocrystalline solar panels are known to be the most efficient among all others.

Does heat enter your home through the roof?

Absolutely. Heat enters your home through your roof, and on a hot day your attic can get up to 150 degrees Fahrenheit or more. Through conduction, heat from the sun warms your roof which then warms your attic and the rest of your home.

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