You’ve heard about “walking on sunshine”, but what about “driving on sunshine”? Why not use rooftop solar panels to charge your Tesla? Up your green game by doubling down on your fight against climate change and rising retail energy prices. Plus charging your Tesla with solar is much cleaner than charging it with natural gas or coal. It’s clearly a concept that Tesla founder Elon Musk is embracing with Tesla’s acquisition of largest U.S. solar installer.
How can you get on board this exciting green initiative? If you are considering a solar panel system, you need to combine the projected energy needs from your Tesla with the expected household energy usage. The key to “going zero” is to install a solar panel system that can generate enough electricity to meet the combined demand.
In terms of basic figures: the 2016 Tesla Model S requires 34 kWh every 1oo miles -- assuming you don't spend most of your time traveling at ludicrous speed. Determining how many kWh it will take to charge your Tesla is dependent on the distance you will be traveling. Short trips 25 miles each way require roughly 17 kWh of energy while running errands close by may only require 2 or 3 kWh. But don't get caught up in the minutia of per trip charging. Florida energy policies like net-metering ensure you can simply use your annual average miles driven as a baseline. Everyday when you come home and plug in you're basically buying back the sun power generated by your solar system throughout the day.
So how many solar panels does it take to charge a Tesla? The answer is not clearcut. Solar panel electricity production depends on a number of factors including solar cell efficiency, solar panel size and the amount of sunlight directly hitting the panel. As a factor of miles driven and kWh needed to charge. A 10,000 mile per year driver needs to generate an additional 3,400 kWh annually from their rooftop home solar panels - In Florida that is around 2.5kW of rooftop solar.
Still want to know more? Don’t go pulling out a pencil and calculator in preparation for some complex equations. Let a solar panel expert like us here at Vinyasun do the work for you. After an analysis of both your home and your entire projected energy demands (including those related to your Tesla is applicable), we will recommend the best home solar panel system to cover all of your needs.