How Many Solar Panels to Run the Air Conditioner?

During the summer, it becomes impossible for us to survive without an air conditioner, but we also want to save some money as well as wish to make a benefit financially.

The use of an air conditioner (AC) can become cost-effective by using a solar panel that uses the natural source to generate power. However, the AC uses most of the energy of solar power for which only one solar panel is not enough all the time to run the air conditioner.

Considering different factors like the time for powering an AC, the size of the AC as well as the solar panels etc., more than one solar panels are required most of the time to run an AC.

Without stretching further, let me give you the idea through which you can understand how many solar panels will be required to run an air conditioner.

Solar Panels to Run the Air Conditioner

Solar Power Usage

Before jumping to the main topic, it is required to know about the power that a solar panel can produce. It will give you an idea about the number of solar panels necessary for powering an air conditioner as well as other home appliances.

To produce sufficient electricity in a house of 226 per sq. Feet containing four family members, it needs a solar panel system of 3-4kw. This type of policy can produce about 121kwh per sq. Feet. Basically, an average solar system can provide 2-4kw power.

Nevertheless, the given estimation can vary as the total output of a solar panel depends on many other factors like:

  • The size of the installed board.
  • The direction where the panel faces. It should be installed facing the south by making an angle of 32 degrees to get the maximum output panel.
  • The type of materials the solar panel is made of.

Powering Air Conditioning  

Nothing can be more soothing than using natural source for generating power that will protect you from the heat created by the same natural source, the sun.

Solar panels are the result of advanced technology that utilizes the natural source for powering all the home appliances, even an air conditioner. However, the main issue with powering an air conditioner is it uses too much electricity.

As mentioned before, the average energy generated by a solar system is 2-4kw, and an air conditioner uses about 1.3kw of power. This means that an air conditioner uses up the vast majority of the solar energy.

On the other hand, the solar panel gives you the best comfort financially by reducing the electricity bill in case of using an air conditioner. Consequently, there are reasons why cosmic powers are preferred more in developed countries nowadays, such as:

  • Cost effective as it saves almost 40-80% of your electricity bill
  • Reduce the load of the compressor
  • The air conditioner produces less noise while connected to solar power
  • It causes less pollution of the environment
  • The process can be recycled

The Number of Solar Panels Required

If you plan to run your AC with the help of solar panels, you have to calculate the extra electricity needs for running that AC and the number of solar panels needed for the AC as well.  For example:

  • For running 1 ton AC, about 22 solar panels of 80 watts are required for a whole year.
  • A 1.5 ton AC requires 1.5 units to run an hour. So if you use the air conditioner for 10hours, you need 2 solar panels of 3-4kw for a day.
  • It needs about 3-4 solar panels to power a central AC that uses up 600 watts.
  • A 5 ton AC will require about 5.5 KVA of electricity. According to the thumb rule, about 17 solar panels are needed to power up the 5 ton AC of 8*4 feet size.


From the above information, you can estimate how many panels you need while planning to set up an air conditioner. You need to consider the factors according to your convenience.

Moreover, calculate the amount of electricity required as the time for how long you will run the AC before you set up your solar panels.

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