Are you looking for an easy and cost-effective way to power some appliances off grid or on the road? A 100 watt solar panel may be exactly what you’re looking for. But what will a 100 watt solar panel run exactly? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll answer all your 100 watt solar panel questions and give you a list of appliances you can power with this kind of kit. So, let’s dive in!

## What is a 100 watt solar panel?

A solar panel is a device that converts sunlight into electricity using photovoltaic cells. It is typically made of silicon and can be used to power electrical devices and whole homes.

A 100 watt solar panel is a panel sized at 100 watts of ‘rated capacity’. This just means that at maximum sunshine (also called Peak Sun Hours), a 100 watt solar panel can produce 100 watts of power.

But solar panels rarely operate at their rated capacity.

There are factors that can cause solar panels to output less power. Such as clouding, shading and the angle of the sun and energy losses in the system itself.

There’s also power conversion losses from DC power produced by your solar panel to the AC power your appliances might use.

We’ll show you how to account for this using a formula for Peak Sun Hours, down below.

100 watt solar panels are commonly used in off grid solar systems, such as RVs, Tiny Homes, boats, and cabins. They are also popular for camping, hiking and expeditions.

And they’re commonly used to powering outdoor lighting, automatic fencing and security systems.

## How much power does a 100 watt solar panel produce per day?

There are a bunch of things that can affect the performance of a solar panel.

So to make it easy to work out how much power you can expect from a solar panel, experts use *Peak Sun Hours per day* and the *rated capacity* of the solar panel.

To get the ‘total output’ of power in a day, just multiply the rated capacity of the solar panel (100 watts) by the Peak Sun Hours in your location. Here is the formula

Daily *Power output = Panel Watts x PSH*/d

Let’s look at an example.

In Australia, we have strong Peak Sun Hours across our capital cities. Here’s the typical PSH we get down under:

## Peak Sun Hours Australian Capital Cities

City | Peak Sun Hours |
---|---|

Adelaide | 5.8 |

Brisbane | 5.2 |

Canberra | 4.7 |

Darwin | 6.4 |

Hobart | 4.3 |

Melbourne | 4.2 |

Perth | 6.4 |

Sydney | 5.3 |

Here’s a map of solar irradiance you can use if you live in the US.

Now back to Sydney.

If peak sun hours per day is 5.3 hours in Sydney, you can expect a 100 watt solar panel to produce up to 530 watt-hours of electricity per day.

100 x 5.3 = 530 watts in a day

The actual impact on any one day of course is impacted by the weather conditions, the angle and position of the panel, losses in the charge controller etc.

The formula is just a typical measure. It might not be what your 100 watt solar panel actually produces. You’ll have to test your panels in different conditions if you want to know this.

## What is a 100 watt solar panel output voltage?

Solar panels come in different voltages. The most common are 12v, 24v, 120v and 240v.

A 100 watt solar panel is commonly used in off grid solar systems because it’s small enough to be portable. So it typically has an output voltage of 12 volts.

These portable solar panels are made to match the voltage of portable batteries and appliances most commonly used in off grid situations (RVs, caravans, boats and for camping and hiking), which is also 12 volts.

You see, to work efficiently, the voltage of your solar panel must match the voltage of whatever it will power or charge.

12 volt solar panels should charge 12-volt batteries and power 12-volt appliances.

However, some 100 watt solar panels have a higher output voltage, such as 18 and 24 volts, which is more suitable for larger less portable appliances.

## What will a 100 watt solar panel run?

A 12 volt solar panel can power less power hungry 12 volt appliances and devices. And there are metric tonne of appliance and devices that come in 12 volts. Everything from lights, fans, small refrigerators, laptops, TVs, chargers for phones, and kitchen appliances.

A 100 watt solar panel doesn’t produce enough power to run more power hungry appliances and devices – like space heaters, toasters, kettles, microwaves, hair dryers and irons.

It won’t directly power 24 volt appliances, 120 volt or 240 volt appliances either.

If you want to know what a 100 watt solar panel can power and for how long, you need the wattage of the appliance.

To work out how long your solar panel will run a device or appliance for, take the daily solar panel output in watts and divide it by the wattage of the appliance you want to run.

In our example, a 100 watt solar panel produces 530 watts a day. You want to know how long (on average or typically) it will run a 50 watt TV.

530W/50W = 10+ hours.

530 watts is enough to run a 50 watt TV for a maximum 10 hours, but on the day it might be less than this because of weather, season, sun angle, etc.

Remember the sun has to be shining to run the TV from the off grid solar panel. If it’s not, you need a battery to store the solar energy in. So in reality your TV won’t run for 10 hours if there’s not 10 hours of sunlight.

## List of appliances a 100 watt solar panel will run

Remember, your 100 watt solar panel will only run these appliances when the sun is shining, unless you have a solar generator (solar + battery kit).

Here is what a 100 watt solar panel can be expected run *individually* (one appliance at a time) and the approximate runtime. This table assumes that your 100 watt solar panel, located in Sydney, produces 530 watts per day.

These are all 12 volt appliances:

Appliance | Total watts/hour | Total Runtime (hours) |
---|---|---|

10 x LED lights | 70 | 7.5 |

2 x Laptops | 50 | 10 |

3 x Tablet Chargers | 72 | 7 |

Small TV | 40 | 13 |

Small fridge | 50 | 10 |

Water pump (sml) | 70 | 7.5 |

Radio | 12 | 42 |

Streaming device | 30 | 17 |

Wifi router | 15 | 35 |

Bluetooth speaker | 65 | 8 |

4 x smartphone charger | 24 | 22 |

Small fan | 30 | 17.5 |

## How much can you run on a 100 watt solar panel? (during the day)

The number appliances you can run on a 100 watt solar panel *at once* depends on the appliances you want to power at once, and their total energy consumption.

Lets look at a typical RV power use from our table above. And our 100 watt off grid solar panel located in Sydney.

Appliance | Watts / hour | Total hours used / day | Total watts / day |
---|---|---|---|

Fridge | 25 | 8 | 200 |

Fan | 30 | 2 | 60 |

5 x LED lights | 35 | 3 | 105 |

Water pump | 70 | 1 | 70 |

Laptop | 25 | 1 | 25 |

Phone charger | 6 | 1 | 6 |

TOTAL | 466 |

## What will a 100 watt solar panel run together?

Even though a 100 watt off grid solar panel can produce enough power to run all of the appliances on our table above during a day, doesn’t mean it can run them all AT THE SAME TIME.

A 100 watt solar panel produces a maximum of 100 watts in an hour. And this is at peak sunlight. You may get less power out at any one time due to weather.

So anything you want to power *together* can not exceed 100 watts.

For example, you couldn’t run the water pump and the TV at the same time. This totals 110 watts.

So you need to size your off grid solar panel to you have enough power to run appliances and devices you need to run concurrently. Like the WiFi router and laptop, which you would always use together. Or the wifi router, streaming device and TV.

This begs the question, is 100 watts of solar enough? Lets take a look at that next.

## Is 100 watts of solar enough?

To work out how much solar is enough, you have to look at:

- what appliances you want to run in a day,
- how long you want to run them for, and
- what appliances you want to run together.

A 100 watt off grid solar panel is enough to run 2 or 3 small 12v appliances together.

But it’s not enough to run other essential RV or camping kit* at the same time*. Like your water pump, TV and fridge for example.

You would need a higher wattage panel, or 2 x 100 watt solar panels to run these things in tandem.

So what CAN’T you run with a 12 volt 100 watt solar panel

- your house
- large power hungry appliances with compressors or heat elements (this take a lot more running watts and starting watts or surge power)
- lots of small 12 volt appliances at the same time
- 24, 48 120 or 240 volt appliances.

## Can 100 watts of solar charge a battery?

The answer is yes 100 watts of solar can charge a battery, but not a big battery. A battery around 30 to 40AH is probably a good fit for a 100 watt solar panel. Anything bigger and you won’t be able to charge the battery to full in one day.

If you want to know how a 100 watt solar panel fares charging different portable battery sizes (or how to work this out for yourself), check out these two articles:

- What size solar panel to charge a 200AH lithium battery
- What size solar panel do I need to charge a 100AH battery

## 100 watt solar panel price

So how much will a 100 watt 12 volt off grid solar panel cost you? Well as of May 2023, different prices for 5 popular solar panel brands ranged from between $130 to $170 AUD.

Brand | Model | Price (AUD) |
---|---|---|

Renogy | 100 Watt 12 Volt Solar Panel | $130 – $150 |

ECO-WORTHY | 100 Watt Solar Panel Kit | $150 – $170 |

RICH SOLAR | 100 Watt Solar Panel | $130 – $150 |

SUNGOLDPOWER | 100 Watt Solar Panel | $130 – $150 |

HQST | 100 Watt 12V Solar Panel | $130 – $150 |

But to use the 100 watt solar panels you’re also going to need a charge control (to regulate the current from the solar panel) and most likely a battery.

You may also need an inverter to convert the DC electricity produced by the solar panels into the AC electricity used by appliances. You can get 12 volt DC appliances, but most household applianced will use AC power.

Let’s look at the typical set up next.

## How to use a 100 watt solar panel

Using a 100 watt solar panel is relatively simple. Here are the basic steps if you’re using your solar panel with a battery storage system:

- Connect the solar panel to a charge controller. This will regulate the amount of energy and current that flows into a battery.
- Connect the charge controller to a battery. This will store the energy produced by the solar panel.
- Connect your devices to the battery. You can use an inverter to convert the DC power from the battery to AC power that your devices can use. Sometimes batteries have these built in.

## How big is a 100 watt solar panel? (dimensions)

100 watt off grid solar panels are typically portable panels because of their small size. They can be lifted by one person and even folded up for transport.

A standard 100 watt solar panel is typically 1030 x 670 x 35 mm and weighs between 16 and 20 pounds.

It takes up roughly 0.69m2.

The exact size and weight will vary depending on the brand and model.

## How long does a 100 watt solar panel last?

There’s 2 ways to look at this question:

Lifespan – A 100 watt solar panel can last for more than 20 years with proper maintenance. However, the lifespan can vary depending on the specific model and manufacturer.

Runtime – This is more about how long the 100 watt solar panel will run for. The answer is, it depends! On what you’re powering and on the sunshine hours in your location.

A solar panel will only produce power while the sun is shining. In some places that might be 6 hours a day, in others more than 10.

## FAQs

### Can a 100 watt solar panel run a refrigerator?

Yes, but only a tiny 12 volt fridge and you need a battery with the solar panel (here’s why). This type of small fridge is typically used in RVs and campers.

A 100 watt solar panel cannot run as standard household refrigerator.

Standard refrigerators require a lot of power to keep food cool. They need a lot of surge power or starting watts to turn them on. They also need a lot of running watts. For example, my Tiny House fridge requires 600 watts of surge power and 200 watts to run continuously after start up.

A 100 watt solar panel will not be able to produce enough energy to run a fridge. You would need a larger solar panel system, with more panels and a battery, to run a refrigerator.

Check out this article for specific solar panel size info to run a refrigerator.

### Can a 100 watt solar panel run a TV?

Yes, a 100 watt solar panel can run a TV, depending on the TV’s power requirements.

Most smart TVs consume between 50 and 150 watts, so a 100 watt solar panel should be able to power a small to medium-sized TV, as long as it’s not on for extended periods of time.

### Can a 100 watt solar panel run an air conditioner?

No, a 100 watt solar panel cannot run an air conditioner.

Air conditioners require a lot of power to operate, and a 100 watt solar panel will not be able to produce enough energy to power an air conditioner. You would need a much larger solar system, with more panels and batteries, to run an air conditioner.

### How many 100 watt solar panels does it take to run a house?

The number of 100 watt solar panels needed to power a house depends on the energy needs of the house. Energy needs vary based on factors such as the size of the house, the number of people living in it, and the appliances used.

The typical Australian household uses around 16 kilowatt hours or 16,000 watt hours of power per day, You’d need over 30 x 100 watt panels (each producing 530 watts per day) to get close to meeting that kind of energy use!

100 watt solar panels are not used for residential solar for this reason. Rooftop solar panels are used instead. These are much large and more powerful solar panels of around 250 to 400 watts each. So you need fewer panels.

Also, the solar panels are only going to run your house during the day when the sun is out. To run your house at night, you’ll need a battery. Here’s how long a solar batteries will last at night.

### How many 100 watt solar panels to go off grid?

The number of 100 watt solar panels needed to go off-grid depends on your **energy needs**.

Off-grid solar systems are designed to meet all of your energy needs without relying on the power grid.

To calculate the number of panels needed, you should first determine your **energy consumption**, which will help you determine the size of the system you need.

As we mentioned above the typical Australian home uses 16kWh of power a day.

To cover all of that with solar panels, you’d need over 3 or 4kW of solar, depending on the peak sun hours where you live. That’s too much for 100 watt panels. Most household solar uses 300 to 400 watt panels.

But off grid, you wouldn’t use your * average* power consumption to work out what size panels you’ll need. Instead, you’d need enough solar to cover your

**.**

*highest energy use day*in the yearYou also need to understand * when* you use the most power and how much your instantaneous peak demand for power is.

Peak demand answers the question: “**At any one time, what’s the most power I will use?**“

Once you understand your energy use, you’ll be able to size your solar panels and your battery to meet your highest daily energy use and peak demand for power..

### How long will a 100 watt solar panel take to charge a 12v battery?

The time it takes for a 100 watt solar panel to charge a 12v battery depends on a number of factors, including the amount of sunlight the panel receives, the efficiency of the panel, and the capacity of the battery.

On average, a 100 watt solar panel will take more than a day to charge a 12v 100AH battery. You’re likely to need something closer to 300 watts to charge that same battery within a day.

Take a look at these two articles to learn what size solar panels you need to charge different size batteries. And how to calculate this yourself:

What size solar panel to charge a 200AH lithium battery

What size solar panel do I need to charge a 100AH battery

### How much power does a 300 watt solar panel produce?

A 300 watt solar panel can produce up to 300 watts of power, under ideal laboratory conditions. However, the actual power output will depend on factors such as the amount of sunlight the panel receives, the temperature, and the angle of the panel facing the sun.

Located in Sydney, which has 5.3 Peak Sun Hours per day, a 300 watt solar panel would be expected to produce 1590 watts in a day.

Here’s where to learn how to calculate how much power a solar panel produces. It’s easy!

### How many lights will a 100 watt solar panel run?

The number of lights a 100 watt solar panel can run depends on the power consumption of the lights. For example, if you are using 10 watt LED lights, you could power up to 10 lights with a 100 watt solar panel, in ideal conditions assuming you have enough sunlight. It’s more likely you’d run 7 to 8 of these lights with a 100 watt panel in good sunlight, accounting for energy lost due to efficiency.

### What is 100 watt solar panel output on a cloudy day?

The output of a 100 watt solar panel on a cloudy day will be reduced compared to a sunny day.

Our Ecoflow portable solar panels will produce about 25% to 40% of their rated power on a day with total cloud cover. So, a 100 watt solar panel may only produce between 25 to 40 watts rather than 100.

You’ll get more power than this if the cloud is intermittent.