If you want to invest in an electric vehicle, the best way to maximize your new car’s value is to charge it daily with the sun’s power. Teaming solar panels with an electric car can drastically reduce energy costs and reduce your carbon footprint. Here are some important things to consider when deciding whether to integrate solar panels and electric vehicles into your home energy plan.
The electricity that an EV requires
There are a couple of different ways to think about the electricity that an EV requires the first is to consider the charge required per mile driven, typically expressed in kilowatt-hours per 100 miles driven (kWh/100 mi). The other way to think about the electricity required to run an EV is to consider the electricity required to fully charge the car. This metric is closer to how we currently think about how much it costs to fill up a tank of gas on internal combustion engine cars.
The electricity required to “fill the tank” for an EV is equivalent to the size of the battery. Generally speaking, electric vehicle batteries can store between 25 and 100 kWh with that variation mainly driven by the range that a certain car can cover on a single charge. For a sense of scale, home energy storage systems, such as the LG Chem RESU 10H and the Tesla Powerwall 2, often store around 10to15 kWh of electricity.
Estimate the number of solar panels needed to charge an EV
Just like standard automobiles, some electric vehicles are more energy efficient than others and the energy efficiency of EVs is calculated using a unit of measurement called MPGe. Miles per gallon gasoline equivalent is a measure of the average distance traveled per unit of energy consumed.
On average, Americans drive their automobiles 13,500 miles a year, which works out to around 40 miles per day.
Now let’s figure out how many solar panels it takes to charge a car for a day. Most of the solar panels that are used generate 335 watts of power per hour. If we get between 3to7 to hours a day of peak energy production from solar panels. we can expect to generate between 1kWh and2.345 kWh of power per solar panel per day. That means it would take 5or6 solar panels to generate enough energy to power for electric vehicles on a sunny day for their average daily commute.
Here’s a look at the best energy efficient electric vehicles available in 2021:
|Make and Model kWh for 40 mi. daily range|
|1. Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus 9.6|
|2. Hyundai Ioniq 10|
|3. Tesla Model Y Standard Range 10.4|
|4. Hyundai Kona 11.2|
|5. Chevy Bolt 11.6|
|6. BMW i3 12|
|7. Kia Niro 12|
|8. Nissan Leaf 12|
|9. Tesla Model S Performance 12.4|
|10. Mini Cooper SE Hardtop 12.4|