When we talk about the angle of solar panels
, we mean their vertical tilt towards the equator. Getting it perfect is tricky, but luckily the angle matters much less than the right positioning of solar panels. If you don't want to dive too deep into the possible complications, choose a tilt between 30 and 45 degrees – it always works well in the USA.The problem is that there is no optimal solar panel angle, or rather it differs from season to season. Some experts suggest setting an angle equal to your latitude. It works perfectly for spring and autumn, but not for summer and winter. In the winter, the sun is lower, so it's better to have your panels ~15 degrees higher than the latitude. On the contrary, in the summer subtract ~15 degrees from the latitude.
The additional energy that you gain by adjusting solar panel angle seasonally isn't really worth the hassle. Fixed angle allows panels to receive ~71.1% of the available energy. By fixing it up four times a year you only raise the percentage to 75.7.
As a way to maximize the energy production, you can add solar trackers which make panels follow the sun at all times, eliminating the problem of an imperfect angle. It is possible to collect 25-30% more energy with them, but a solar system with solar trackers is much more expensive. Besides, the warranty for them lasts only for 5-10 years. Panels aren't afraid of hurricanes and storms
, but trackers are. Overall, solar trackers can be justified only when maximum energy is a must.