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How to Design an Off-Grid Solar System

SolarPlanSets simplifies off-grid solar system design, offering expert drafting services to streamline operations, reduce costs, and make hiring and layoffds pain-free.

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    With SolarPlanSets, designing an off-grid solar system has never been more straightforward. We help business owners answer the question “How to design an off-grid solar system?” by streamlining their operations, reducing costs, and managing the scalability of their teams with expert solar system drafting services.

    What Are Off-Grid Solar Systems?

    Off-grid solar systems, also known as standalone photovoltaic systems, are independent power systems that can operate without being connected to the electricity grid. They typically consist of solar panels, a charge controller, a battery bank, and an inverter. These systems can be customized according to the energy requirements, and are ideal for remote locations where grid connection may be challenging or costly.

    Off-grid solar systems can offer energy self-sufficiency, a lower carbon footprint, and freedom from fluctuating energy costs. However, the design of these systems must be precise, considering factors such as the solar potential of the location, the total power consumption, and the energy storage capacity.

    Designing Off-Grid Solar Systems with SolarPlanSets

    At SolarPlanSets, we specialize in drafting detailed plan sets for off-grid solar systems. Our drafts include:

    • PV-Only Plan Sets: These are intended for systems that only involve photovoltaic solar panels. These plans detail the layout of the solar panels, wiring diagrams, and system specifications.
    • Solar + Energy Storage Plan Sets: These plan sets include the layout and specifications for both solar panels and energy storage solutions, like batteries. This ensures your system can store excess energy generated during the day for use during the night or on cloudy days.
    • Standby Generator Plan Sets: These plans are for systems that incorporate a backup generator along with the solar setup. A standby generator can provide power during periods of low solar energy generation.

    We provide these technical plan sets complete with all load calculations, giving you a comprehensive understanding of your off-grid solar system design.

    How to Calculate for 100% Solar Offset

    Planning for a 100% solar offset requires thorough calculation. You need to understand your energy consumption and how much energy a solar system can produce. The aim is to design a system that can generate as much energy as you use, offsetting your energy consumption completely.

    To achieve 100% solar offset, follow these steps:

    Step 1: Determine Your Energy Consumption

    Start by calculating your energy consumption over a year. You can find this information on your utility bill. Utilities typically measure consumption in kilowatt-hours (kWh). Add up the kWh from each monthly bill over a year to get your annual consumption.

    For example, if your monthly consumption is around 800 kWh, your annual consumption would be 800 kWh/month * 12 months = 9,600 kWh/year.

    Step 2: Estimate Solar Energy Production

    Solar energy production depends on several factors, including the location, the size of the solar array, the angle and direction of the panels, and local weather conditions. However, for a general estimate, you can use a factor of 1.5 kWh per day for each 1 kW of installed solar panels.

    For instance, if you plan to install a 5 kW solar system, the estimated daily energy production would be 5 kW 1.5 kWh/kW = 7.5 kWh. Over a year, the system would produce 7.5 kWh/day 365 days = 2,737.5 kWh/year.

    Step 3: Adjust for System Efficiency

    Solar systems do not operate at 100% efficiency. Energy is lost at various stages such as conversion from DC to AC power, energy transmission, and energy storage. A good rule of thumb is to assume about 80% system efficiency. So, multiply your estimated energy production by 0.8 to adjust for these losses.

    Using the previous example, the adjusted annual energy production would be 2,737.5 kWh/year * 0.8 = 2,190 kWh/year.

    Step 4: Calculate the Required System Size

    To offset 100% of your energy consumption, the energy production of your solar system should match your annual energy consumption. Divide your annual consumption by the adjusted annual energy production to get the required size of your solar system.

    For our example, the required system size would be 9,600 kWh/year / 2,190 kWh/year = 4.38 ~ 4.4. So, a 4.4 kW solar system would be needed to offset 100% of this energy consumption.

    Remember, these are rough calculations and actual figures can vary based on a number of factors. At SolarPlanSets, our detailed plan sets provide precise load calculations to help you accurately design your off-grid solar system for maximum efficiency. Contact us today to get started on your journey toward 100% solar offset.

    Why Choose SolarPlanSets?

    At SolarPlanSets, we prioritize providing high-quality, accurate, and detailed plan sets for your solar systems. Here’s why you should consider outsourcing your solar drafting services to us:

    • Expertise: We specialize in solar system design and possess deep knowledge of solar technologies and regulatory standards.
    • Cost-Effectiveness: Outsourcing to SolarPlanSets can save costs associated with hiring and training in-house staff, making your business operations more economical.
    • Scalability: We can handle projects of any size and complexity, providing you with the flexibility to scale up or down as needed.
    • Time Efficiency: Our experienced team can deliver your plan sets in a timely manner, enabling faster project execution.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    1. What information do I need to provide for my plan set?You will need to provide us with details about your project such as the size of the area available for solar installation, the estimated power consumption, and any specific requirements or preferences you have.
    2. How long does it take to get my plan set?The time frame depends on the complexity of the project, but we aim to provide your plan sets in under 2 business days while ensuring quality and accuracy. The accuracy of the information you submit to us also depends. Less back-and-forth the quicker our solar system designers can complete your plan set.
    3. Can SolarPlanSets help with obtaining permits?We provide detailed and accurate plan sets that you can use for permit applications. However, we do not offer assistance with the permit application process.
    4. Does SolarPlanSets offer installation services?SolarPlanSets specializes in drafting solar plan sets. We do not offer installation services, but our detailed plan sets can be used by your chosen installation team.


    Designing an off-grid solar system requires technical know-how and precision. With SolarPlanSets, you get a partner that not only has the expertise in creating accurate and detailed plan sets but also helps you streamline your business operations, making them more cost-effective and scalable.

    Harness the power of the sun efficiently with our expertly crafted PV plan sets, solar plus energy storage plan sets, or Standby Generator Plan Sets. With us, you can ensure that your solar drafting services are in expert hands.

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