Solar Car Charging
Driving an Electric Car is about driving greener, with a lower carbon footprint and lower financial running costs.
By charging your car from your own Solar PV system integrated into your home, you can save even more money on your driving costs, whilst further reducing your carbon footprint, by using your own produced 100% green solar energy. This makes a solar panel system for your home the ideal accessory to accompany your electric car.
By moving to an electric car you are already taking a positive step towards a greener low carbon lifestyle. Even using conventional fossil-fuel generated grid power your carbon emissions are vastly reduced.
“A Solar PV Panel system will give you completely green and sustainable electric power that can power your home as well as charging your EV free of any cost”
However generating your own electricity from you own Solar PV panel array you will minimise your impact still further. A Solar PV Panel system will give you a completely green and sustainable electric power source, that can power your home as well as charging your EV free of any cost. Many EV owners think of the purchasing a solar system as pre-buying their fuel for the next few years – at a cost that is very quickly repaid.
Even in the UK it is possible to produce enough power from even a standard domestic sized solar pv system to both power your home, as well as providing the energy required to fuel your car.
A Typical Solar Charging Example
A typical EV (a Nissan Leaf for example) will achieve roughly 4 miles of driving from 1kWh of charge.
A typical 5kW south facing solar pv system produces an average of 18kWh of solar energy per day March to October.
The typical uk home that cooks with an electric stove consumes 9kWh of electricity per day on average. That leaves 9kW of spare solar pv production that can be used to charge your car – that is the equivalent of 36 miles of driving per day (or 13,000 miles pa) plenty for the average daily commute.
“A 5kW Solar PV system is capable of providing all the electricity to both power the average uk home and run a car 36 miles a day from March to October”
Sizing a Solar PV system to suit your home and Lifestyle
The above is a very simple uk average example, but you can use the same basic principles to size a solar pv system to suit both your domestic usage as well as your electric car charging requirements:
Step 1 – calculate your average daily electricity consumption
Step 2 – calculate your average daily mileage and divide by 4, equals kW used driving per day.
Step 3 – add together to give your anticipated daily kwh electricity requirement
Step 4 – times the figure in step 3 by 365 days of the year and divide by 1000 to give the suggested kWh size of pv system needed, in order to completely offset your electric vehicle and domestic electricity requirement.
Under this very basic formula it is possible to completely offset all of your annual electricity requirement.
“It is possible to design a renewable system that matches your consumption and lifestyle perfectly, to minimise your combined energy and fuel bill – moving you even closer to a fully sustainable and carbon neutral lifestyle.”
Solar Generation in Winter
Due to the UK’s latitude and our gloomy Winter weather it becomes very difficult to completely cover all of your domestic and EV electricity requirements – this is a challenge faced with off-grid system design, where a backup generator is always required.
The low level of sunlight in the winter months, means that grid purchased electricity will be required on many days to top up your solar pv production, in order to cover all of your electricity requirements.
However even in the winter months the 5kW south facing solar pv system example used will still be producing on average 7.5kWh of electricity per day – that is still enough to be able to drive 30 miles per day on your own produced green solar energy. Also if you look at total solar pv production over the year, all of your domestic and EV electricity usage can be fully offset by your home produced green solar electricity.
“Even in Winter a 5kW Solar PV system will produce on average enough electricity to drive 30 miles per day”
Domestic Solar Battery Storage
The time of day when you wish to charge your car is also an issue when designing a Solar PV system to suit your needs. If you are at home for much of the day, your EV can be charged directly from your solar pv system, however if you plan to charge your car at night a domestic solar battery storage system will also be required.
A domestic battery storage system is charged by your solar panels during the day, to give you a store of energy you can use at night to both power your home in the evenings, as well as to charge your Electric car overnight.
“A Battery Storage System acts as a buffer enabling you to maximise the consumption of your solar pv production, and means you can power your home and charge your car at night or when the sun isn’t shining”.
Your home battery storage system should be sized in a similar way to your solar pv system, by calculating your night time electricity consumption and your after dark EV charging requirement, to give the size of your required battery.
For a more detailed assessment to size your battery storage system and solar pv system, contact our sister company ‘Completely Green’
Solar PV System Savings and Returns
Following the above example of a 5kW PV system, with a 9kwh per day household domestic consumption and 36 miles per day EV driving, the solar PV system is capable of saving you over £2500 pa in electricity and fuel costs, compared to powering your home with grid electricity and fuelling a 35mpg diesel car.
15p per mile diesel cost, compared to zero solar car charge cost [4p per mile if grid charged] for
13,000 miles pa = £1950 saved compared to fuelling a diesel car
9kWh x 365 days = 3285kWh of domestic electricity at the current average grid rate of 15.5p per
kWh = £509 pa of domestic energy bill savings potential
Plus £328 pa Feed in Tariff payments (5000kWh @ current FIT rate of 4.04p per kWh and 2500kwh
of deemed export at 5.03p per kWh)
Potential total savings = £2787pa
“A top of the range 5kW Solar PV system is capable of annual savings of up to £2500pa and 5-year investment payback”
It is completely and affordably possible to power your home and fuel your car from a domestic solar pv system, with an expected payback period of less than 5 years and system life expectancy of 20 years plus. That is potentially a further 15 years’ worth of free driving and free household energy, all the while the cost of fuel and grid electricity will be soaring for everyone else.
The Performance of a solar pv system is impossible to predict with certainty due to the variability in the amount of solar radiation (sunlight) from location to location and from year to year. This estimate is based PVGIS solar production averages and is given as guidance only. The saving obtainable from a solar pv system are also dependant on user interaction with the system and additional devices and patterns to maximise self-consumption.
Solar Suitable Charge Points
If you are planning to use solar pv to charge your car be sure to select a car charge point solution that enables effective solar charging (charging at a lower power rate to suit solar PV production levels, and maximum solar battery storage discharge rates.)
Please visit our Charge Point installation pages for advice and options in this regard.
Through our renewable energy sister company Completely Green we can advise you, as well as install a suitable solar PV system to accompany your EV purchase.
Contact us to help you calculate the right size and type of system to suit your new EV and your home.
• Different panel choices
• Battery storage
• On roof and in-roof mounting systems
• Smart home systems
As well as Solar PV system we can advise and install a complete range of green and renewable energy technologies, including:
• Heat pumps
• Heat recovery
• Solar thermal
• Rainwater harvesting
• Biomass heat
Make your EV purchase be the first step towards a greener and more sustainable lifestyle for your family and your home.